FOOTBALL’S world governing body FIFA is launching disciplinary proceedings against Spanish Football Federation president Luis Rubiales over Sunday’s controversial kiss and other behaviour after the Women’s World Cup final.
Rubiales has faced heavy criticism after he grabbed his crotch in celebration of Spain’s victory over England in Sydney, while stood metres away from Spain’s Queen Letizia and her daughter Sofia in the stadium VIP area.
He then forcibly kissed midfielder Jenni Hermoso on the lips during the trophy celebration.
FIFA in a Thursday afternoon statement said: “The FIFA Disciplinary Committee has informed Mr. Luis Rubiales, President of the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), of the opening of a disciplinary procedure against him based on the events that occurred during the final. of the FIFA Women’s World Cup last Sunday, August 20, 2023.”
The body considers that Rubiales’ conduct during and after the final could constitute violations of articles 13.1 and 13.2 of its disciplinary code.
“Anyone who threatens the dignity or integrity of a country, a person or a group of people using derogatory, discriminatory or vexatious words or actions (by whatever means) for reasons of race, skin colour, ethnic origin, national or social, gender, disability, sexual orientation, language, religion, political position, purchasing power, place of birth or for any other status or reason will be penalised with a suspension that will last at least ten games or a determined period, or with any other appropriate disciplinary measure,” states point 13.1 of the code.
It adds in the following article, referring to the possible sanctions for this type of conduct: “If one or more followers of a federation or a club adopt the conduct described in section 1, the following disciplinary measures may be imposed on the federation or the club responsible”:-
a) in the case of the first offence, a match with a limited number of spectators and a fine of at least 20,000 Swiss francs (€20,930).
b) in the case of recidivism or if the circumstances of the case require it, disciplinary measures such as the implementation of a prevention plan, a fine, the deduction of points, the playing of one or more games behind closed doors, or the prohibition to play in a stadium.
FIFA concluded: “The FIFA Disciplinary Committee will not provide any further information on this disciplinary proceeding until a final decision has been made on it.”
“FIFA reiterates its absolute commitment to respecting the integrity of all people and for the same reason it condemns with the greatest vigour any behaviour to the contrary.”
The RFEF has called an extraordinary general assembly on Friday in response to the matter, while confirming it has opened internal proceedings against Rubiales.
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