By Peter McLaren-Kennedy • 24 September 2022 • 8:21
Spain's Women Football team - Image Spanish Football Federation
SOLO USO EDITORIAL, SOLO DISPONIBLE PARA ILUSTRAR LA NOTICIA QUE ACOMPAÑA (CRÉDITO OBLIGATORIO)
Posts online by the players involved say that they had asked not to be called up by the team until the situation that has affected their mental well-being, health and performance has been resolved. The players say they are concerned that they will incur injuries prior to the world cup and therefore have made the decision not to make themselves available.
In their posts, they say: “We want a firm commitment to a professional project in which all aspects are taken care of to get the best performance from a group of players with whom we believe that more and better goals can be achieved. We wish the best for the RFEF, for the national team feminine and for us in particular, without entering into public wars.”
They continue saying: “We understand that our job is not in any case to choose said position, but to express in a constructive and honest way what we believe can improve the group’s performance.”
These posts and further statements suggest, despite their claims that the initial press coverage was taken out of context, that there is more to the story with clear differences between the players and the hierarchy on how to best manage the team to get the results everyone is looking for.
It’s definitely a case ofwatch this space, there is more to come.
The Royal Spanish Football Federation said on Friday, September that by the close of play on the Thursday fifteen emails had been received from players who chose to quit the team in protest against the coach’s methods.
The Federation said that the situation is unprecedented in the history of football in Spain, both female and male. They added that this is possibly the first such situation of its kind in international football, saying that players accused the National Team Coach Jorge Vilda and his staff of having significantly affected their “emotional state and health.”
Team members say they are unhappy with the management of injuries, the atmosphere in the locker room, Vilda’s team selection and his training sessions according to a Reuters report.
For not the Federation and the Spanish Football Association are standing by the coach saying: “We will not allow the players to question the continuity of the national coach and his coaching staff, since making those decisions does not fall within their powers.
“The federation will not admit any type of pressure from any player when adopting sports measures. These types of manoeuvres are far from exemplary and outside the values of football and sport and are harmful.
The Spanish Football Association has warned the players that refusing to honour a call-up for a national team was classified as a “very serious infraction and can carry sanctions of two and five years of disqualification.”
It is understood that they have also told the players that they will not be allowed to return to the national team unless they “accept their mistake and ask for forgiveness”.
The situation is promising to result in a standoff between players and the sport’s management, with the allegations both serious and damaging for the sport. Whether the fifteen Spanish women’s footballers who quit will be replaced by others remains to be seen, although it is possible that the move will stop others from accepting a call-up.
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Originally from South Africa, Peter is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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How can making a complaint against a coach be classed as a “mistake”. After what happened in the UK with the gymnastics coach who had been abusing his team for years, nothing would surprise me. Seems like the FA here is run by a bunch of dinosaurs who think that they can get away with anything
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