England Women’s team manager, Sarina Wiegman, has slammed the Spanish FA and Luis Rubiales during her speech at a UEFA presentation ceremony on Thursday, August 31.
Wiegman won the UEFA Women’s Coach of the Year award after she guided the Lionesses to victory at Euro 2022 last summer.
After receiving her trophy from UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin at the presentation ceremony in Monaco, Wiegman took the opportunity to show her support for the Spain Women’s team.
It has been less than two weeks since England’s agonising 1-0 defeat to Spain in the final in Sydney.
However, Spain’s glory has been overshadowed by the ‘Kissgate’ scandal which saw Spanish FA president Luis Rubiales bizarrely kiss star Jenni Hermoso.
Wiegman received the prize from UEFA president, Aleksander Ceferin, after guiding the Lionesses to victory at Euro 2022 last year, as well as the World Cup final this month.
She said the ‘Kissgate’ scandal shows there’s a long way to go in women’s football and society
Wiegman praised Spain for playing ‘great football’ at the World Cup and said they ‘deserved to be celebrated’
‘Can I send a message, please?’ Wiegman said after asking the host’s initial questions about her successful year.
‘Well, first of all, thanks everyone for voting, especially of course colleagues, it’s really special, I’m very honoured.
‘Also thanks to everyone who’s involved with the Lionesses, of course the team, the incredible team, players and staff and the support from the FA.
‘But it also feels a little different. We all know the issues around the Spanish team, it really hurts me as a coach, as a mother of two daughters, as a wife, and as a human being, it shows the game has grown so much but there’s also still a long way to go in women’s football and in society.
‘I would like to dedicate this award to the Spanish team, the team that played at the World Cup such great football that everyone enjoyed.
‘This team deserves to be celebrated and deserves to be listened to. I’m going to give them a big applause and I hope you will join me.’
Later on stage was World Cup winner Aitana Bonmati, who collected her UEFA Women’s Player of the Year award before also addressing the Rubiales situation.
‘I appreciate the words of Sarina Wiegman,’ she began.
‘These are not good times for Spanish football. The World Cup has not been held as it should be and I would not like to let the page turn.
‘As a society, we must not allow abuses of power in work relations and a lack of respect. I am with my colleagues and with Jenni Hermoso.’
Earlier, it was reported that FIFA will push for Rubiales to be banned from all football for 15 years after the disgraced Spanish FA president’s own federation dramatically withdrew their support for him.
Spanish FA chiefs asked Rubiales, 46, to resign with immediate effect, saying his ‘unacceptable’ behaviour had caused ‘grave harm to the image of Spanish football’.
The U-turn followed a threat from FIFA to ban Spain’s national teams and elite clubs from international competition if the Spanish FA refused to accept their punishment of Rubiales.
Rubiales has been asked to step down by the Spanish FA who performed a U-turn on their president
Rubiales was last week given a 90-day interim suspension by FIFA, and had previously retained the backing of the Spanish FA, pending the outcome of an internal investigation into his extraordinary behaviour in kissing Hermoso following Spain’s World Cup final victory over England.
Following a five-hour meeting on Monday, the Spanish FA confirmed they had now asked Rubiales to step down.
Rubiales has defiantly refused to quit until this point, and he sent FIFA a copy of newly released footage showing the women’s football team celebrating and joking about his infamous kiss.
Hermoso has denied claims that the kiss was consensual.
Madukwe B. Nwabuisi is an accomplished journalist renown for his fearless reporting style and extensive expertise in the field. He is an investigative journalist, who has established himself as a kamikaze reporter.