The world is still awaiting the outcome of the ordeal involving Spanish FA (RFEF) president Luis Rubiales.
Rubiales kissed Spanish player Jenni Hermoso on the lips without her consent after Spain won the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup but has refused to resign in spite of massive criticism and calls for him to step down. He’s even gone as far as to suggest legal action against Hermoso for not siding with him publically.
Meanwhile, the situation has raised awareness about women’s soccer and the treatment of players by people in positions of power, often men, like Rubiales.
England head coach Sarina Wiegman was the latest person in the soccer world to speak out about the situation, saying that the Spanish women’s team “deserves to be listened to,” dedicating her UEFA Women’s Coach of the Year award to the team.
“Accepting this trophy feels a little bit different,” she said. “We all know the issues with the Spanish football team. It really hurts me as a coach, as a mother of two daughters, as a wife, and as a human being.
“It also showed me that there is a long way to go in women’s football and in society. I’d like to dedicate this award to the Spanish team. A team that played such great football that everyone enjoyed. This team deserves to be celebrated and listened to.”
Spain midfielder Aitana Bonmati, who won the Player of the Year award, also shared her thanks to Wiegman and support with Hermoso.
“I want to thank Sarina’s words,” Bonmati said. “We are not going through a great moment in Spanish football, despite coming from winning the World Cup. There’s not many people talking about it because of some episodes that should have never happened.
“I would like to mention them a bit. I think that we, as a society, can’t allow power abuse to take place in our working place, as well as the disrespectful gestures we’ve seen. So I’d like, for my teammate Jenni but also all the women who are going through the same: we are with you. I hope we keep improving as a society.”