Luis Rubiales, president of the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), has decided to step down.
“Rubiales, who has been at the center of controversy for kissing a Spanish player after a Women’s World Cup match, is reportedly set to step down,” the Daily Star said on Friday.
The Spanish women’s national team won the 2023 Women’s World Cup. It was an emotional win. It was the first World Cup title for the Spanish women’s team, and the first in 13 years since the Spanish men’s team won the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. But then something untoward happened.
It happened during the post-final awards ceremony. The Spanish team took the podium one after the other after winning the World Cup. President Rubiales hugged Hermoso. He then grabbed his face with both hands and kissed him. It was unimaginable. “I didn’t feel good,” Hermoso said on social media live from the locker room afterward.
The media criticized Rubiales. Touching someone without their consent is technically sexual harassment. Mr. Rubiales was nonplussed. “Kissing Hermoso? Everyone is talking about something stupid,” he said on the radio of Spanish media outlet Marca. “It was an expression of intimacy,” Hermoso said. “It was a gesture of intimacy. We were overwhelmed with joy after winning the World Cup and it was natural. I don’t have a problem with my relationship with the president,” he said. But the criticism of Rubiales didn’t stop there.
Even Spain weighed in. Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said, “What we saw was unacceptable behavior. The apology from the president is not enough. I don’t think it’s appropriate either. The Spanish players gave everything to win, but the president’s behavior shows that we still have a long way to go to achieve equality.”
Rubiales also apologized in person. “It was a normal and natural behavior. I certainly made a mistake. It happened in the heat of the moment and without any malice. I repeat. There was no malice from either party. I apologize because someone was hurt. I am sad that this incident has affected the biggest success in the history of women’s soccer and Spain’s second title.” Rubiales’ apology didn’t make things better.온라인바카
Even FIFA got involved. “The Disciplinary Committee has informed Mr. Rubiales of the initiation of disciplinary proceedings for the events that took place. His behavior violated the basic rules of decent conduct and was detrimental to the sport.” This led to Rubiales’ resignation. “Rubiales’ resignation will be announced on the 25th,” Marca reported. No official announcement has been made yet.”