UPDATE: Rubiales Faces Six-Month Disqualification Over ‘That Kiss’

Rubiales Set For Six-Month Ban After 'That Kiss'

Luis Rubiales, President of the Royal Spanish Football Federation. Credit: Luis Rubiales. Credit: rfes.es

UPDATE: Thursday, August 24 at 9:04 pm

Luis Rubiales is set to resign tomorrow, Friday, August 25, as president of the Royal Spanish Football Federation during an Extraordinary General Assembly at noon. 

Rubiales, the current president of the Spanish Federation, has informed his team of his intention to step down. Consequently, he won’t be eligible to run for the presidency in the upcoming 2024 elections, as confirmed by OK Diario.

This Friday, at the Ciudad del Futbol de Las Rozas, an Extraordinary General Assembly is scheduled to commence at noon. Rubiales had hoped to gain the unanimous backing of Spanish football at this assembly. However, recent events have led him to decide on his resignation.

Thursday, August 24 at 5:13 pm

Following ‘that kiss’ at the women’s World Cup the powers that be are on the brink of an agreement to disqualify Luis Rubiales for six months.

On Sunday, August 20, during the women’s World Cup title celebrations, Rubiales’ unexpected kiss with Hermoso sparked widespread outrage. This proposed sanction would see Rubiales sidelined for half a year, yet he would remain eligible for the elections that the Spanish Football Federation must hold in the latter half of 2024, writes OK Diario, Thursday, August 24.

This is due to the RFEF’s status as an Olympic federation, with the men’s team having secured their place for Paris 2024 and the women’s team potentially joining them.

Public And Official Response

The Higher Sports Council (CSD) believes the punishment should be both stern and exemplary, given the strong reaction from Spanish society. Víctor Francos, who heads the body, feels that a six-month ban from holding office strikes the right balance.

Despite Rubiales’ apology, public opinion and political figures remain unsympathetic. He’s set to face the General Assembly this Friday, where most of Spanish football will likely back him.

FIFA has also expressed concern. A statement from the organisation revealed that its Disciplinary Committee has initiated proceedings against Rubiales based on the events of the Women’s World Cup final: ‘The FIFA Disciplinary Committee has today informed Mr Luis Rubiales, President of the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), of the opening of disciplinary proceedings against him on the basis of the events that took place during the final of the FIFA Women’s World Cup on Sunday 20 August 2023.’

Hermoso’s Stand

Jenni Hermoso has sought the support of the players’ union, FUTPRO, in the aftermath of the kissing incident. FUTPRO has issued a lengthy statement condemning Rubiales and urging the Spanish Football Federation to establish necessary protocols to safeguard players’ rights.

‘My union FUTPRO, in coordination with my agency TMJ are taking care of defending my interests and being the interlocutors on this matter,’ Hermoso stated.

She further confirmed, ‘FUTPRO rejects any attitude or conduct that violates the rights of women footballers and from the union we are working to ensure that acts such as those we have seen never go unpunished, that they are sanctioned and that the appropriate measures are adopted to protect women footballers from actions that we believe are unacceptable.’

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Written by

John Ensor

Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina. He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.