Spanish Football In Chaos As Women’s World Cup Winners Refuse Call-Up For Latest Squad

Image of football fan with Spanish flag.

Image of football fan with Spanish flag. Credit: FamVeld/

CHAOS once again surrounds the Spanish Women’s national football team after a large number of players refused to return to the squad for the upcoming Nations League matches.

In their first outing since winning the World Cup in Australia on August 20, La Roja have matches lined up on September 20 in Sweden and then just four days later, face Switzerland at home.

Spain’s new coach, Montse Tomé, was due to announce her squad for these matches this, Friday, September 15, but her press conference was eventually postponed due to the events that occurred just a short time before.

A few hours earlier, following a three-hour meeting, the players released a statement in which they reiterated their stance on not playing for Spain.

This came despite the fact that the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) had fired the women’s coach, Jorge Vilda, and replaced him with Tomé, who was previously his assistant.

The players issued a signed statement on August 25 in which 21 of the women who represented their country in Australia stated that they would not play for Spain again until certain conditions were met.

One of these was that Luis Rubiales should be removed as president of the RFEF. In a recent interview with Piers Morgan, he confirmed that he intended to do so, but no official announcement has transpired yet.

It is believed that the press conference will now take place tomorrow, Saturday 16. In the meantime, Tomé faces a tricky situation with her selection. If she insists on including the rebels in her squad, then those selected could face serious consequences.

Under Spanish national sports laws, any athlete who refuses to participate when called up can face heavy fines and even a ban from their particular sport.

The players issued a statement

Today’s player’s statement read: ‘The players of the Absolute National Team, recent world champions, as well as their teammates, wish to express, as they did on August 25, 2023, their enormous discontent after the events that occurred at the medal ceremony at the Women’s World Cup, and the subsequent extraordinary assembly of the Royal Spanish Football Federation’.

It continued: ‘The events that unfortunately everyone has been able to see are not something specific and go beyond sports. In the face of these acts we must have zero tolerance, for our partner, for us and for all women’.

‘Several weeks after what happened, we want to make public the holding of various meetings with the RFEF in which the changes that we understand are basic to be able to move forward and have been expressed clearly and forcefully by the staff reached a structure that does not tolerate or take part in such degrading events’, it added.

Alexia Putellas subsequently made the statement public on her social media account.

Among their demands is the resignation of the current president of the RFEF, Pedro Rocha, as well as the restructuring of the organisational chart of women’s football, the presidency, the general secretary, the communication area and the integrity directorate.

“The changes that have occurred are not enough for the players to feel in a safe place, where women are respected, there is a commitment to women’s football and where we can give our maximum performance,” they claimed.

A total of 39 players signed the note, including 27 of the 30 called for the World Cup pre-list and another 12 who resigned last year.

Of those 30, the Real Madrid stars Claudia Zornoza and Athenea del Castillo, and Sheila García, from Atlético, agreed in principle to be at Tomé ‘s disposal but did not add their signature.

In an Instagram post, Zorzona wrote: ‘I had already made the decision to retire from the national team before the World Cup and I think there is no better way to do it than with the title we have won’.

‘It is time to fully concentrate on my goals with Real Madrid and allow myself the breaks that I have not had in recent years as an international player’, she continued.

In conclusion, she insisted on: ‘expressing my solidarity with my teammates and wishing that the structure of the entire team Selection change once and for all, living up to our achievements so we can only talk about football’, as reported by

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Written by

Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at