Spain women’s national team coach Vilda fired after kiss scandal


The Spain’s World Cup-winning women’s team coach, Jorge Vilda, has been fired, the country’s football federation (RFEF) announced on Tuesday, 10 days after FIFA suspended its president for kissing national team player Jenni Hermoso on the lips.

Vilda’s contract was terminated by a new board constituted following the suspension of RFEF President Luis Rubiales by FIFA two weeks ago for an allegedly non-consensual kiss during the World Cup triumph party.

In a statement that gave no reason for his dismissal and did not mention Hermoso, Rubiales or the scandal, RFEF thanked 42-year-old Vilda for his “extraordinary sporting legacy.”

“The coach has been key to the remarkable growth of women’s football and leaves Spain as world champions and second in the FIFA rankings,” the RFEF statement said.

The furore involving Rubiales has quickly spiraled into a national debate over women’s rights and sexist behaviour.

In a separate statement by interim President Pedro Rocha, the RFEF apologised for Rubiales’s “inappropriate conduct.”

“The damage caused to Spanish football, to Spanish sport, to Spanish society and the values of football and sport as a whole have been enormous,” the three-page statement signed by Rocha said.

Vilda, who is seen as a close ally of Rubiales, came under criticism last year after 15 players staged a mutiny, demanding his resignation for ineffective coaching techniques and team conditions equal to those of the men’s squad.

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