December 1, 2023

Spaniards celebrated their nation’s first Women’s World Cup victory on Sunday afternoon by holding dance events within the streets and sharing their giddy delight.

But it surely was a kiss seen all over the world that was the speak of social media.

Amid the nationwide jubilation, many have been jolted by an impromptu kiss planted on the Spanish ahead Jennifer Hermoso by the president of Spain’s soccer federation, Luis Rubiales, through the medals ceremony, an disagreeable reminder to lots of the sexism scandals which have plagued Spanish girls’s soccer.

After the Spanish gamers defeated England 1-0 and lined up onstage in Sydney, Australia, to gather their medals earlier than lifting the World Cup trophy, Mr. Rubiales enthusiastically grabbed Ms. Hermoso, kissed her on the cheeks after which kissed her absolutely on the lips, video of the encounter confirmed. Spain’s Queen Letizia was onstage on the time.

Later, in one other video, Ms. Hermoso is seen apparently making her distaste identified, responding, “Hey, however I didn’t like that!”

The video of what many concluded had been an undesirable smooch was extensively shared on social media, spurring confusion amongst many Spaniards and prompting others to denounce it as extremely inappropriate habits. Some called it disgraceful and proof of lingering sexism in soccer. Others demanded that Mr. Rubiales resign.

As of Sunday evening, he had not responded to the criticism. The soccer federation didn’t instantly reply to an electronic mail searching for remark from Mr. Rubiales because it was late in Spain.

The kissing episode revived reminiscences of the mistreatment of Spain’s feminine soccer gamers. For 27 years, the ladies’s nationwide crew had the identical coach, who was notorious for dismissing the gamers as “chavalitas,” or immature women. He was dismissed in 2015 after gamers protested.

Present members of the ladies’s nationwide crew have additionally complained that they’ve been disrespected by prime male soccer executives and denied the form of elite gear and remedy given to the lads’s groups. The ladies have mentioned that the services the federation supplied for them are subpar and that Jorge Vilda, their coach, fostered an oppressive office setting, one through which the gamers’ each transfer was monitored by his workers.

Final fall, many players revolted against the coach and federation, accusing them of mistreatment and withdrawing from consideration for the nationwide crew. Ms. Hermoso was seen as having tacitly supported the rebellion.

The controversies did not stop Spain from winning this year’s World Cup. However the sudden kiss added one other dimension to the ladies’s victory.

In a live video posted on Instagram and shared on different social media platforms, Ms. Hermoso is seen celebrating along with her teammates within the locker room after the ultimate and smiling whilst she says the kiss was not needed.

Including to the confusion, Mr. Rubiales is heard in another video telling the gamers that they might be rewarded with a visit to Ibiza for his or her victory and including that it could be a chance to rejoice his “marriage ceremony” to Ms. Hermoso — an obvious reference to the kiss.

There isn’t a indication that Mr. Rubiales and Ms. Hermoso are in a relationship.

Nadia Tronchoni, an editor at El País, Spain’s greatest newspaper, famous in an opinion piece that Sunday’s victory was “greater than a title” for Spanish girls.

“The ladies, the women of this nation celebrated the truth that our stubbornness has lastly defeated machismo,” she mentioned, referring to feminine gamers’ lengthy battle to be acknowledged. “Rubiales’s kiss to Hermoso reminds us that the street forward is a protracted one.”

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