Spanish women want to return focus to football

October 25 – Spain’s women players want to start concentrating on matters on the field rather than the kissgate scandal that marred their World Cup-winning celebrations.

Skipper Olga Carmona, who scored her country’s winner in the final in August, says the team want to focus on securing a spot at the 2024 Paris Olympics. Spain will play Nations League games against Italy on Friday and Switzerland on Tuesday.

“There was a lot of uncertainty,” Carmona said. “There were delicate and tense moments, but we are returning to normalcy. I ask everyone to start talking a little bit more about soccer from now on. We are happy and we want to show that on the field.”

Jenni Hermoso, who found herself at the centre of the crisis that engulfed Spanish soccer after she was kissed on the lips by former president Luis Rubiales at the awards ceremony after the final, recently returned to the squad having been omitted from the first squad list announced after the World Cup by new coach Montse Tomé, who at the time said she wanted to protect her.

“Jenni is happy,” Carmona said. “It was very difficult during the last training camp. Now the group is happy and our focus is on making the Olympic Games.”

Carmona said the agreement signed this week by players, the federation and the Spanish government to make official some of the changes demanded was an important step forward.

“The agreement takes us a lot closer to improving women’s soccer,” she said. “There is still a lot to do, but we took a big step forward.”

Rubiales, meanwhile, continues to face an investigation into his actions after prosecutors accused him of sexual assault and coercion.

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