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FIFA suspends Spanish Football President Rubiales after Hermoso Kiss

FIFA on Saturday suspended Spanish Football Federation President, Luis Rubiales after the football governing body opened disciplinary proceedings into what a member of Spain’s Women’s National Team said was a non-consensual kiss he gave her after the team’s World Cup win last week.

Rubiales’ suspension, which takes effect immediately, bars him from all football-related activities at both the national and international level for 90 days, pending the outcomes of the governing body’s disciplinary proceedings, FIFA announced in a statement on Saturday.

FIFA noted that both Rubiales and the RFEF are prohibited from contacting Hermoso and those close to her.

FIFA’s move was the latest development in a deepening row between Rubiales and the RFEF and Hermoso and her Spain teammates, which the players say has tarnished the glory of their World Cup win in Australia last Sunday.

Hermoso said in a statement on Friday that Rubiales and the federation put “continuous pressure” on her and her family and friends to make her appear alongside Rubiales in a video in which he apologised for his kiss, but she declined.

Rubiales refused to resign at an emergency RFEF meeting on Friday and on Saturday, the federation threatened to take legal action over Hermoso’s “lies” about the kiss.

The RFEF responded, saying they would “demonstrate each of the lies that have been spread, whether in the name of the player, if that is the case, or by the player herself”.

It would take “as many legal actions as necessary to defend the honour of the President of the RFEF.”

Hermoso, 33, along with 80 other Spain players, including the entire World Cup winning squad, said they were going on strike and would not play for the national team until the “leadership” changed.

Writing by Julian Osamoto; Editing by Daniel Adejo and Tony Okerafor