John (aka Jan or Jean) Langenus was the referee of the final of the first World Cup in 1930. He took charge of six matches in 3 World Cup finals and many other international matches. He was a journalist and a writer and a secretary to a provincial governor. Langenus died in 1952.
Perhaps the most important ref in his day, Langenus officiated around 85 international matches in times when football slowly turned professional and large stadiums were built. It was also a time of belligerency between countries like France and Italy, Germany and the rest etc, but their national teams still competed. Langenus took charge of those international matches between 1927 and 1939, often fair matches even when the two countries were nearing war.
Taken from World Referee
Many matches Langenus took charge of were firsts of something. First match in the Mestalla stadium in Valencia, first continental ref in Scotland and in Ireland (cup final), first ever match England lost away (against Spain: 4-3) and of course the first World Cup final.
John Langenus was a player in his youth, but a not very good one. When he decided to become a referee, he taught himself the rules by reading a leaflet about it and went to the examinations. He
was questioned by real English referees and Langenus passed only the second time. According to Langenus his first ever match as a referee was around 1906.
His first years were not good ones and more than once he doubted he was good enough and wanted to quit when he was hit in the stomach or when people threw bricks at him. He once forgot to keep time and noticed he had also forgotten to wind his watch.
During WWI he took charge of matches in (neutral) Holland and in the early 20's he started writing articles.
When he was designated to officiate in a match for the 1920 Olympic Games, he refused to go because the match was in Brussels and not in Antwerp, where the Games were being held. He argued that all matches should be played in the Olympic town, (his native) Antwerp. This stand cost him matches for a while.
Ivan Henning Hjalmar Eklind became a FIFA referee in 1931 and retired from refereeing in 1952. A very long time to be an international referee and Eklind took charge of 6 matches in 3 World Cup
finals, the first one in 1934 (three matches and the final), the last one an amazing 16 years later in 1950.
Eklind died in 1981.
Taken from World Referee
You can deduct from the dates that Eklind was only 28 when he took charge of the final and he had been an international referee for only 2 years. It's clear the authorities, be it Mussolini or
FIFA or both, chose for gullibility over experience.
The final did not end well for the Czechs and Eklind
Pierre Georges Louis Capdeville (30 October 1899 – 24 February 1991) was a football referee from France, who controlled the 1938 FIFA World Cup Final in Paris between Italy and Hungary. He is the only referee to have officiated in a World Cup final in his native country.
Taken from Wikipedia
Capdeville was the referee in the French Cup final in 1936 in the game between Racing Club of Paris and Charleville, and was also in charge of the Yugoslavia versus England match during the Football Association's last European tour before the outbreak of the Second World War.