Spain Women to boycott matches until Luis Rubiales steps down

Spain’s World Cup-winning Women’s team announce that they will not play any more matches unless Luis Rubiales steps down as president of the Football Federation.

Spain Women‘s World Cup-winning team have released a statement announcing that they will not play any future matches unless the president of the Spanish Football Federation Luis Rubiales leaves his post.

Rubiales sparked fury during the celebrations of his nation’s Women’s World Cup success over England in the final, kissing forward Jennifer Hermoso on the lips on the podium.

The 46-year-old’s actions have been condemned by a plethora of sporting and non-sporting figures around the world, and he has faced numerous calls to resign from his post, including from Spain’s Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez.

Rubiales insisted that the kiss was consensual, although Hermoso took to Instagram soon after the celebrations to admit that she did not enjoy it, and FIFA opened disciplinary proceedings against him on Thursday.

Rubiales was initially alleged to be considering stepping down, but addressing the Extraordinary General Assembly on Friday, the former defender affirmed on multiple occasions that he would not resign during an outlandish speech.

Now, a total of 56 Spanish players – including all 23 members of their World Cup-winning squad – have said that they will refuse to play any more international games until the removal of the “federation leadership”.

In addition, prominent male players such as David de Gea, Iker Casillas, Hector Bellerin and Borja Iglesias have condemned Rubiales’s kiss, and the latter is also boycotting national team call-ups.

The Spanish Football Federation president also came under fire for grabbing his crotch in close proximity to Queen Letizia and her 16-year-old daughter during the final – an act which he described as “unfortunate” and apologised to the Royal Family for.

However, Rubiales launched a scathing attack on the “social assassination” of his character over the kissing incident, while also describing “false feminism” as “one of the scourges” of Spain.

Manager Jorge Vilda – who also faced a player boycott last year due to concerns over his coaching methods – was in attendance during Rubiales’s speech and expressed support for the under-fire chief at the Extraordinary General Assembly.

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