Spanish FA regional chiefs demand Rubiales’ resignation after five-hour meeting

Luis Rubiales has been placed under significant pressure to resign after Spain’s regional FA chiefs urged the president to resign following a crunch five-hour meeting. Crisis talks were staged between the presidents of Spain’s territorial federations following growing concerns that Rubiales remains in his role as president of the Spanish FA. 

The 46-year-old has faced more calls to step down following his kiss on Spain forward Jenni Hermoso in the aftermath of the Women’s World Cup final. He insists that the kiss was consensual, although Hermoso denies his claim that she said it was “OK”. 

Fall-out over Rubiales’s behaviour has entered a second week, with several key figures telling him to resign. However, the former Levante defender held an incredible press conference last week when he defied speculation that he would step down by repeatedly shouting: “No, I will not resign!”

Rubiales faces a ‘preliminary’ investigation by the Spanish authorities who have launched a probe into alleged sexual assault. His own mother has locked herself in a church to begin a hunger strike in defence of her son. 

And now the heads of Spain’s regional federations have concluded that he must resign following a meeting that lasted a remarkable five hours. “Once the meeting of the Commission of Presidents of Regional and Territorial Federations of the RFEF has finished, the following agreements are unanimously made known to the world of football and society,” a statement read. 

“After the latest events and the unacceptable behaviours that have seriously damaged the image of Spanish football, the presidents request that Mr. Luis Rubiales immediately present his resignation as president of the RFEF.

“We warmly congratulate the women’s soccer team for their victory in the World Cup. We value the meaning and legacy of success for Spanish sport. We express our admiration and gratitude to an unrepeatable group of players and we extend our congratulations to all those who have built, over the years with determination, the growth of women’s football.

“We will urge the corresponding bodies to carry out a deep and imminent organic restructuring in strategic positions of the Federation to give way to a new stage of management in Spanish football.

“Once FIFA has suspended Mr. Luis Rubiales, the Federation’s internal protocols have been activated as a result of the suspension.

“In addition, we have urged President Pedro Rocha to immediately withdraw the last communication on behalf of the Federation with FIFA and UEFA that we have known today.

“The RFEF maintains its commitment to continue implementing its investment, as well as equality policies for the development of women’s football.

“Lastly, the Presidents’ Commission has given its unanimous support to Mr. Pedro Rocha so that he may lead a new stage where dialogue and reconciliation with all football institutions is the line to follow. We make ourselves available to the CSD and all the institutions involved to continue building together the candidacy for the 2030 World Cup.”

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