The international Spanish footballers and the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) have reached an agreement for the players to wear the Spain shirt again, the one with which on August 20 they were proclaimed world champions. This is deduced from the call of the new coach, Montse Tomé, who has cited most of the World Cup players and announced on Monday the return of players such as Mapi León and Patri Guijarro for the Nations League matches against Sweden on Friday 22 and against Switzerland on Tuesday 26. On the list, however, is not Jenni Hermoso. "A new stage begins," said Montse Tomé, who commented on the absence of the striker: "We have believed that this is the best way to protect her." The Federation and the players have therefore approached positions about the demands of the athletes to improve their working conditions and end the stage of Luis Rubiales at the head of the body.
The call is as follows: as goalkeepers, Mass, Cata Coll and Enith Salon; defenders: Irene Paredes, Laia Aleixandri, María Méndez, Oihane, Olga Carmona, Ona Batlle, Mapi León; midfielders: Aitana Bonmatí, Alexia Putellas, Patri Guijarro, María Pérez, Tere Abelleira, Rosa Márquez; fronts: Athenea, Esther González, Eva Navarro, Mariona Caldentey, Inma Gabarro, Amaiur Sarriegui and Lucía García.
👉 This is the list for the first two days of the #UWNL
🇪🇸 The @SEFutbolFem will face Sweden and Switzerland#JugarLucharyGanar pic.twitter.com/ruBcpt0MA0
— Spanish Women's National Football Team (@SEFutbolFem) September 18, 2023
The preparation of the list was framed in a latent crisis since the resignation of15 players in September 2022 and accentuated after the kiss that the already former president Rubiales planted to Jenni Hermoso in full celebrations for the world title in Sydney. A few hours after winning the World Cup, the players began a squad that has lasted until now. And the RFEF responded today with a new statement in which it insists on "the public commitment acquired by the new direction of the institution that directs football in Spain", now in the hands of the interim president, Pedro Rocha, dolphin of the resigned Rubiales. Tomé's call reinforces this rapprochement of positions between the two parties.
In a note that, they say, they have also transferred to the players, the federation wanted this noon "to express clearly, and without internal or external interpretations, the strategic axes in this new stage of the federation that both football and society demand". They are aware, they say, "of the need to make structural changes", as the players demand. Something that, they point out, Rocha has already begun to materialize in recent dates and has led them to make "difficult decisions in recent days" because they are convinced that "a renewal is necessary." Therefore, the statement adds, "the players are urged to join this change led by the Federation, understanding that the transformations that must continue must be solid and fair."
The federation, through the new interlocutor in charge of resuming the talks, Loli Martínez Madrona, referee and delegate of Protection of Sexual Violence in the RFEF, had given an ultimatum to the players this past weekend. They had to give an answer before the end of Sunday. But the clock struck 12 o'clock at night and in Las Rozas they still had no news of the players. The players went to bed without having reached an agreement. And they were summoned to continue talking during the morning of this Monday, until reaching an agreement to return to the list of summoned by Spain.
The players of the Spanish team lift the title of world champions. CARL RECINE (REUTERS)
On the table they had a proposal that the federation understood as more than reasonable. And that they received willingly, although they lacked specificity and guarantees. "On Sunday they reached an agreement on what to do in all the departments that were involved in the management of Jenni Hermoso's case. They agreed in word that there will be changes and what those changes will be, but they want guarantees that this will be the case. They have been deceived many times before, "say sources around the world champions. The players didn't want to make a misstep. That is why they asked that this agreement be in writing. They assume that dismissals and new appointments cannot be made overnight, but they want to be sure that they are not being duped, as happened in their day when the crisis of the 15 was resolved without a firm commitment to change. They were pressured with the approach of the World Cup and it worked. "But for them the World Cup was just a parenthesis. Now, they are even more united than they were then, even though some are trying to break that unity. The 39 who have stayed go to one, "say the same sources. They know it's their time and they're not going to waste it.
In addition to assuming that first point of the five demanded by the players of the selection, the remodeling "of the organization chart of women's football", which should have, in addition to a coach, who will continue to be Montse Tomé, with a sports direction and a person responsible for the lower categories, in the image and likeness of the structures of the men's team, The Federation tried to resolve the other, somewhat more complex issues. The players asked for a deep restructuring and, for now, only the coach Jorge Vilda has left, in addition to the president, forced to resign due to social and political pressure.
In the statement issued by the players last Friday, they pointed in five points to a series of people and charges of the RFEF, demanded a clean. In the offices of Las Rozas they assume that some of these demands respond to what happened in the last month, to how some of the people closest to former President Luis Rubiales behaved and moved. For example, Rubén Riveira, marketing director, and Albert Luque, sports director of the Spanish national team, friend and right hand of Rubiales. Riviera and Luque traveled to Ibiza at the end of August to pressure Hermoso and other players to support the president's version. The federations understand that the players demand to debug responsibilities in that sense. However, they point out many other names, known in the house, despite not having publicly given their names and surnames, and not in all those cases it has been argued why they want them out, explain from Las Rozas. They, however, consider that all those identified charges were involved in one way or another in the management of the Rubiales case and the non-consensual kiss to Jenni Hermoso: in the published statements, the pressures on the player, her relatives and her teammates, in the discredit of the Madrid footballer and her lack of protection in a case of abuse of power. There come other proper names: Andreu Camps, general secretary, or Pablo García Cuervo, director of communication, who were already very weakened in the eyes of the players after the management in the crisis of the 15, for their harshness with those who in their day were called rebels and were branded as "little girls".
Jennifer Hermoso, with the trophy of world champions. HANNAH MCKAY (REUTERS)
Therefore, because some believe themselves victims of a settling of accounts, the federation has asked the players to identify those people they point to and to justify their accusations, so that a disciplinary file can be opened to verify these accusations and try to solve the problem. "You can't kick out a handful of people without first knowing exactly what happened," federal sources say. Meanwhile, the RFEF has committed, from the outset, that none of those people appear for the concentrations of the women's team, the first, imminent, before the celebration of the Nations League match against Sweden next Friday.
In the statement issued on Monday, which is the same that has been transferred to the players, the federation concludes: "We guarantee a safe environment for the players and we are committed to a climate of mutual trust so that we can work together and achieve that women's football continues to progress with much more strength. We must begin to show off the star that the internationals have achieved with so much effort." It is thus, with those words of concord and with a public commitment to change, that the federation has tried to resolve the crisis unleashed by the Rubiales case.At the moment, the champions return to wear the shirt of Spain.
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