FIFA’s Disciplinary Committee has started disciplinary actions against Luis Rubiales (age 46), who serves as the president of the Spanish Football Association.
This follows his spontaneous kiss directed at Jenni Hermoso (age 33), a champion of the Women’s World Cup. The soccer governing body made this announcement on Thursday.
The incident occurred during the medal presentation ceremony after the Spanish team’s 1-0 victory over England in the final match on Sunday.
This act caused a significant outcry both within and outside of Spain. Jenni Hermoso herself expressed her views, stating that such actions should not be allowed to pass without consequences.
“The FIFA Disciplinary Committee informed Luis Rubiales, President of the Spanish Football Association, today that it is opening disciplinary proceedings against him based on the events that occurred during the final of the Women’s World Cup,” it said in a statement.
“The events may constitute violations of Article 13 Paragraphs 1 and 2 of the FIFA Disciplinary Code.”
Article 13 in the code deals with “offensive behaviour” of players and officials, particularly “violating the basic rules of decent conduct” and “behaving in a way that brings the sport into disrepute”.
Rubiales, who initially called his critics “idiots”, issued a video apology late on Monday, but it failed to quell the uproar.
Acting Second Deputy Prime Minister Yolanda Diaz called for Rubiales’ resignation because “without any doubt (he) attacked a woman“.
Spain’s women’s football league, Liga F, called for Rubiales to be dismissed and said it had lodged a complaint with the president of the National Sports Council (CSD) over his “very serious actions and behaviour.”.
Hermoso, who said after the final that she did not enjoy Rubiales’ kiss, added on Wednesday that her union, FUTPRO, and her agency, TMJ, were defending her interests in the matter.
“We are working to ensure that acts such as those we have seen never go unpunished, that they are sanctioned and that exemplary measures are adopted to protect women footballers from actions that we believe are unacceptable,” she said.