The Spanish men’s national team is gathering this week. As a result, it will be the first time since Spain soccer chief Luis Rubiales kissed Jenni Hermoso while the player picked up her mesal, which she claims was unwanted.
It’s been over a month since the incident occurred after Spain won the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup. As a result, the team leaders, including Paris Saint-Germain’s Marco Asensio, provided a statement.
Asensio was joined by Alvaro Morata, César Azpilicueta, and Rodri during a press conference where they spoke out against Rubiales. The group noted that the chief’s actions don’t represent the institution.
“The national team players would like to point out several issues related to the latest events that have damaged the image of Spanish football,” the statement said (h/t RMC Sport).
“First of all, we would like to convey, once again, our pride and our most sincere congratulations to the women’s national team for the title of world champion in Sydney. A historic step full of meaning that will mark a before and after in Spanish women’s football, inspiring many women with a triumph of incalculable value. For this reason, we wish to express our solidarity with the players who have seen their success tarnished.
“We want to reject what we consider to be unacceptable behavior on the part of Mr. Luis Rubiales, who has failed to live up to the institution he represents. We place ourselves firmly and clearly on the side of the values represented by sport. Spanish football must be an engine of respect, inspiration, inclusion and diversity and must lead by example through its conduct on and off the pitch.
“From today, we are focused on a decisive appointment for the future of Spanish football, en route to qualification for Euro 2024 with two games against Georgia and Cyprus. We would like to be able to focus on sporting matters now given the importance of the challenges ahead of us.”
Since the incident, there have been calls for the chief to resign from his position as Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) president. However, Rubiales isn’t planning to leave his post. Recently, he was speaking at the federation’s Extraordinary General Assembly and said he will “fight to the end.”
Still, it doesn’t seem that the men and women players want to see change. Will it happen? Only time will tell.