Spain’s women’s soccer team won the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, but a series of sexual scandals involving its president and head coach have angered fans.
Spain defeated England 1-0 in the final of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia-New Zealand on Tuesday to take home the trophy.
However, during the awards ceremony immediately following the victory, footage of Spanish Football Association president Luis Rubiales, 45, forcibly kissing a player was broadcast. Rubiales suddenly grabbed midfielder Henipher Hermoso’s face with both hands and kissed him as he stepped up to the podium.
In addition, the Spanish women’s soccer team’s head coach, Jorge Bilda, was caught on camera placing his hand on a female coach’s breast as he hugged her during the final.
The incident occurred after some players on the Spanish women’s national team filed a formal complaint against Bilda, accusing him of verbally abusing and swearing at them.
Outraged Spanish soccer fans protested in the streets after the game, holding signs that read “VILDA OUT” and calling for the coach’s removal.
“I made a mistake,” Rubiales said in a video statement on Nov. 21, “and I have to admit that I was wrong. It was an action taken in a moment of joy and without malice,” he apologized.
But public outrage was not to be dampened, with the prime minister and his ministers joining in the criticism.
“What we saw was an unacceptable gesture,” Spanish Prime Minister 메이저사이트 Pedro Sánchez said at the Women’s World Cup victory celebration at the presidential palace on Sunday, “The players gave everything to win, but the president’s behavior shows that there is still a long way to go for equality,” he said.
Spain’s Minister of Equality, Irene Montero, also took to X (formerly Twitter) to say, “Don’t take kissing without consent for granted. It is part of the sexual violence that women face on a daily basis.”