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Spanish Women’s National Team Threatens Boycott

  • Spain’s women’s national team says it will not play any matches until Spanish Football Federation president Luis Rubiales is removed from his position.
  • Spanish player Jenni Hermoso says the kiss from Rubiales during Spain’s World Cup celebration was not consensual.
Spain's women's national soccer team says it will not play matches until federation president Rubiales is removed.
Keith McInnes/Sipa USA via USA TODAY Sports

Spain’s Women’s World Cup win has not come without controversy, as the national team threatens not to play any matches until Spanish Football Federation president Luis Rubiales is removed from his position. 

The tension stems from Rubiales kissing Spanish forward Jenni Hermoso during the team’s World Cup trophy presentation. On Friday, Rubiales said calls for him to resign were a “social assassination” by “false feminists” as he claimed Hermoso consented to his kiss, but she said that is not true in a statement made Friday through her FUTPRO union.  

“I want to clarify, as you can see in the images, that at no time did I consent to the kiss that he gave me,” Hermoso said. “I won’t tolerate that my word is called into question, and even less so that words are invented which I didn’t say.”

Spain’s entire World Cup team co-signed Hermoso’s statement and added that they will not play for the national team for as long as Rubiales remains atop their federation. 

Hermoso, 33, is the all-time leading goal scorer for the Spanish national team and FC Barcelona Femení. “I didn’t want to interfere in the multiple ongoing legal processes, but I feel obliged to state that the words of Luis Rubiales explaining the unfortunate incident are categorically false and part of the manipulative culture he himself has created,” Hermoso posted on X. 

FIFA opened an investigation into Rubiales on Thursday. It will determine if Rubiales violated its code of following “the basic rules of decent conduct” and “behaving in a way that brings the sport of football and/or FIFA into disrepute.”

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