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‘I will not resign,’ says defiant Spanish soccer boss Luis Rubiales following week of fierce criticism for unwanted kiss on star player

(Qnnflash) – Amidst a week of intense criticism and controversy, Luis Rubiales, the president of the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), has declared that he will not step down from his position. The criticism follows an incident where Rubiales was caught on video giving an unwanted kiss to Jennifer Hermoso, a prominent player from Spain’s victorious Women’s World Cup team. In a determined stance, Rubiales addressed an RFEF Extraordinary General Assembly and asserted that he will “fight to the end.” In a defiant speech, he characterized the kiss as “mutual” and decried what he referred to as “unjust” campaigns and “fake feminism.”

The incident in question occurred after Spain’s Women’s World Cup victory, where Rubiales was seen forcibly kissing Jennifer Hermoso on the lips as she received her winners’ medal. Hermoso later expressed her discomfort with the act, stating that she “didn’t like” it and “didn’t expect” it. Initially, Rubiales admitted to having made a mistake and offered an apology. However, the soccer community’s disapproval persisted, with criticism pouring in from both the soccer world and Spanish politicians, including Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez, who labeled the gesture as “unacceptable” and deemed the apology inadequate.

Despite the growing pressure, Rubiales defended his actions vehemently during the assembly. He described the kiss as “spontaneous, mutual, euphoric, and with consent,” emphasizing that consent was the pivotal factor. He refuted the notion of a power dynamic, asserting that he was not in a position of dominance and that his intention was to console Hermoso, who had missed a penalty during the final match.

In response to the escalating situation, Spain’s Association of Professional Soccer Players (FUTPRO) and Hermoso’s agency TMJ announced that they would be advocating for her interests and acting as spokespersons on the matter. Additionally, global soccer governing body FIFA initiated disciplinary proceedings against Rubiales, citing potential violations of the game’s “basic rules of decent conduct.”

While acknowledging the need to apologize for his actions, Rubiales labeled the calls for his resignation as a “witch hunt.” His refusal to step down underscores the deep divide in opinions surrounding the incident, as well as the broader conversations about consent, power dynamics, and gender equality in the sports world.

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