Fatal kiss in the final of the World Cup: the Spanish soccer player says that she did not give her consent

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Spanish soccer player Jenny Hermoso, who was kissed on the lips by the president of the Spanish Football Federation, Luis Rubiales, said that she did not consent to the kiss.

“I want to explain that in no case did I consent to the kiss. I can’t stand it when my words are questioned, especially when they invent words that I didn’t say,” Hermoso is quoted as saying by the Spanish players’ union FutPro.

The players of the national team demand the resignation of Rubiales and refuse to perform until he leaves.

Rubiales himself refused to resign. He stated that the kiss was spontaneous and “consensual”.

The Spanish authorities initiated a judicial review of the incident and the International Football Federation (FIFA) organized a disciplinary investigation.

The incident took place at the stadium after the final match of the Women’s World Cup, won by the Spanish.

“I will not resign, I will not resign, I will not resign. […] I will fight to the end,” Rubiales repeated during an emergency meeting of the football federation’s leadership. He said he would defend himself in court.

The resignation of 46-year-old Rubiales was also demanded by several members of the Spanish government, a number of Spanish and foreign athletes.

“FIFA reaffirms its unwavering commitment to respect for the integrity of all human beings and strongly condemns any behavior contrary to this,” said soccer’s main governing body.

What happened

Rubiales kissed Spain forward Jennifer Hermoso on the lips after Spain’s 1-0 win over England.

The Disciplinary Committee will now decide whether he breached the “fundamental rules of decent conduct” and whether he “behaved in a way that damaged the reputation of football and/or FIFA”.

FIFA did not say when they might make a decision. Disciplinary judges of this organization can impose sanctions on individuals. These penalties range from warnings and fines to professional removal.

kiss

A few minutes before the fatal kiss for Rubiales’ career, the president of the Spanish Football Federation grabbed his crotch, thus expressing his admiration for the victory of the Spanish team.

The gesture could be considered an aggravating circumstance, as Rubiales watched the match alongside Spain’s Queen Letizia and 16-year-old Princess Infanta Sofia.

What Hermoso herself said

FutPro, the trade union that represents Hermoso, previously led by the same Rubiales, said that the incident with the kiss should not go unpunished: “We are working to ensure that actions similar to those we witnessed do not go unpunished and that measures are taken to protect female soccer players from actions that we consider unacceptable.”

The head of the Spanish football federation apologized, saying in a video message that “he was absolutely wrong.”

The 33-year-old footballer initially wrote on Instagram that she “didn’t like” Rubiales’ actions, but later a statement was released on her behalf defending him.

The kiss was categorically condemned by the Prime Minister of Spain, Pedro Sanchez, calling it an “unacceptable gesture”, adding that a simple apology for the act “is not enough”, and the second vice-prime minister of Spain, Yolanda Diaz, even called for the resignation of Rubiales.

Spain’s top women’s league, Liga F, said Rubiales should be suspended because he had “tarnished” the World Cup victory and caused “unprecedented international shame for Spain, Spanish sport and women’s football worldwide”.

In a statement, Liga F, which confirmed it had lodged a complaint with the National Sports Council (CSD) asking for Rubiales’ suspension, said: “One of the greatest achievements in the history of Spanish football has been tarnished by the disgraceful behavior of the highest representative of Spanish football.”

The Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) has scheduled an extraordinary general meeting on this issue for Friday.

The accused Rubiales tried to justify himself by the fact that there were “no bad intentions” in this kiss and in general it happened at a moment of great emotional upheaval: “At that moment we all took it quite naturally, but we were all scared.”

“I have to apologize, learn from this and understand that when I am the president, I have to be more careful,” he added.

True, the Spanish Football Federation later announced that it would file a lawsuit over Jenny Hermoso’s comments about the Federation’s president, Luis Rubiales. The federation questioned the footballer’s version of events.

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