(Reuters) – Spanish football federation (RFEF) President Luis Rubiales has been provisionally suspended by world soccer governing body FIFA after he grabbed player Jenni Hermoso’s head and kissed her on the lips following Spain’s victory at the Women’s World Cup.
Following are quotes and reactions:
FIFA DISCIPLINARY COMMITTEE
“The chairman of the FIFA Disciplinary Committee, Jorge Ivan Palacio… has decided today to provisionally suspend Mr Luis Rubiales from all football-related activities at national and international level.
“This suspension, which will be effective as of today, is for an initial period of 90 days.”
“The chairman… orders Mr Luis Rubiales to refrain, through himself or third parties, from contacting or attempting to contact the professional player of the Spanish national football team Ms Jennifer Hermoso or her close environment.”
ROYAL SPANISH FOOTBALL FEDERATION (RFEF)
“Luis Rubiales has stated that he will defend himself legally in the competent bodies, has full confidence in the FIFA bodies and reiterates that, in this way, he is being given the opportunity to begin his defence so that the truth prevails and his complete innocence is proven.
“In accordance with the provisions of the RFEF statutes, the deputy vice-president to the presidency, Pedro Rocha Junco, will assume the interim presidency during this period.”
XAVI HERNANDEZ, BARCELONA MANAGER
“I want to give my unconditional support to Jennifer Hermoso and the players. I condemn the behaviour of the president of the Spanish Football Federation.
“And I regret that people aren’t talking about the historic achievement of winning the World Cup,” he said, in remarks posted by the club on X, formerly known as Twitter.
HOLLIE VARNEY, COO OF ANTI-DISCRIMINATORY BODY KICK IT OUT
“There has been a complete lack of accountability and it is now up to international bodies such as FIFA and UEFA, or the Spanish government, to try and resolve these issues and ask whether those in charge at the Spanish FA are fit to lead.
“We welcome FIFA’s provisional suspension of Rubiales, pending an investigation.”
GARY LINEKER, FORMER ENGLAND AND BARCELONA STRIKER AND TELEVISION PUNDIT
“At last… Such a disgrace that one awful bloke has taken all the attention away from the Spanish women’s wonderful achievement,” he said in a series of posts on X.
IAN WRIGHT, FORMER ENGLAND STRIKER AND TELEVISION PUNDIT
“Good. But still silence from UEFA. No solidarity. No comment on the behaviour of their vice-president.
“Same UEFA whose president did not attend the Women’s World Cup final where both teams represented the region. These are the same people in charge of leading the future of women’s football.”
(Compiled by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; editing by Frances Kerry and Jason Neely)