FIFA opens Rubiales ethics case as Hermoso piles on the pressure ahead of Spanish FA meet

August 24 – FIFA’s Disciplinary Committee has opened disciplinary proceedings against Spanish FA president Luis Rubiales following the storm of criticism that has arisen over the kiss he gave Spanish player Jenni Hermoso at the World Cup final presentation.

At the same time Hermosa, through her union, has called on the Spanish FA to take firm action. The attacking midfielder admitted she “didn’t like” it when Rubiales held her in a tight embrace before kissing her on the lips on the celebratory podium.

The FIFA ethics case will examine whether “the events may constitute violations of article 13 paragraphs 1 and 2 of the FIFA Disciplinary Code.

FIFA said it has an “unwavering commitment to respecting the integrity of all individuals and strongly condemns any behaviour to the contrary.” The governing body also said no further comment would be made until its disciplinary body had issued a final ruling.

While a FIFA decision is awaited, the Spanish look to be moving faster with the case with Hermoso having now released a statement through Futpro, the Spanish players’ union, confirming she is pushing for action to be taken against Rubiales.

“My union Futpro, in coordination with my agency TMJ are taking care of defending my interests and being the interlocutors on this matter,” the statement read.

“From FUTPRO we express our firm and resounding condemnation of conduct that violates the dignity of women.

“From our association we ask the Royal Spanish Football Federation to implement the necessary protocols, ensure the rights of our players and adopt exemplary measures.

“It is essential that our national team, current world champion, is always represented by figures that project values of equality and respect in all areas.

“It is necessary to continue to advance in the fight for equality, a fight that our female players have led with determination, bringing us to the position we are in today.

“We also call on the National Sports Council to support and actively promote prevention and intervention against sexual harassment or abuse, machismo and sexism, within its competences.”

The Spanish FA has already confirmed it will hold an Extraordinary General Assembly tomorrow.

World players union Fifpro has also called for an immediate investigation to be launched into Rubiales.

“FIFPRO fully endorses the statement of Spanish player union AFE in calling for immediate action to address the conduct of Spanish federation president Luis Rubiales and is calling for investigation of his actions under FIFA’s code of ethics,” a statement read.

“We reiterate that it was deeply lamentable that such a special moment for the players of the Spain national team taking place before a global television audience should be stained by the inappropriate conduct of an individual in a role carrying so much responsibility.

“Uninitiated and uninvited physical approaches towards players are not appropriate or acceptable in any context, and especially not when they are put in a position of vulnerability by a person who holds a position of power over them in their workplace.”

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