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Zekun Liu

Halifax, Nova Scotia
Regional Referee at Soccer Nova Scotia.

Zekun Liu, originally from China, embarked on a soccer refereeing journey in 2018 after discovering his love for the sport during junior high. His passion for soccer led him to transition from playing to officiating, a decision influenced by a friend who was already a referee.

Reflecting on his journey, Zekun highlighted the structured and comprehensive referee courses he attended upon arriving in Nova Scotia in 2015. These courses equipped him with the knowledge needed to become a soccer referee.

“The referee course was an eye-opener. From mastering the laws of the game to rigorous fitness components, it provided a comprehensive and interesting journey.”

Starting with youth games, Zekun gradually progressed to officiating University Games, college games, and even had the opportunity to participate in the U15 National Championship. The shift from youth to higher-level games brought a change in focus, emphasizing player and game management over strict law application.

Zekun’s enthusiasm for refereeing stems from the thrill of making decisions on the field, working with teammates, and interacting with players. His experiences include traveling to different locations for games, learning and adapting to various playing styles.

Looking ahead, Zekun aspires to advance his refereeing career by participating in more soccer events and joining Canada Soccer’s next-generation program, a pathway to officiate professional and international games.

The importance of funding in Zekun’s journey became evident as he shared how support from programs like Support4Sport and Nova Scotia gaming enabled him to attend crucial referee courses, enhancing his skills and diversifying his career.

Expressing the broader significance of such programs, Zekun emphasized their role in fostering a culture of learning and collaboration. According to him, these opportunities bring people together, promoting personal growth, leadership, and communication skills.

In concluding his interview, Zekun acknowledged the crucial role sports play in community development. He highlighted the sense of unity and shared experience among players, contributing to personal and community growth.

“From local games in Nova Scotia to university matches in Truro and beyond, each game offers a unique experience and a chance to evolve as a referee.”

Zekun’s ultimate goal is to be part of Canada Soccer’s next generation of referees, illustrating his dedication to continuous learning and development in the world of soccer officiating. As Zekun continues to strive for his aspirations, he recognizes the pivotal role that ongoing support and funding play in shaping the future of sports officiating in Nova Scotia.

“Striving for the Canada Soccer Next Generation Program is my biggest goal. I’m ready to work hard, explore opportunities, and take on the challenge of advancing in my refereeing career.”


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