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Former Spanish FA president Luis Rubiales makes example with war in Ukraine, amid kiss case

Luis Rubiales at Madrid court
Luis Rubiales at Madrid court

Having resigned from his role both at the Spanish FA (RFEF) and UEFA, former RFEF president Luis Rubiales is now giving his time to proving himself not guilty at court, following the controversial kiss he gave world-cup winner Jenni Hermoso during the FIFA Women World Cup 2023 prize-giving ceremony.


Reports from Spain agree that the former president, who continues to claim the kiss was consensual, has spoken in his own defence at the court for nearly an hour. He even once used the war in Ukraine as an example while trying to point out how a celebration can cause bizarre scenes like the one he made happen at the Women’s World Cup.


President of the Royal Spanish Football Federation Luis Rubiales (R) kisses Jennifer Hermoso of Spain (L)

‘She comes to me to give me a hug. We hug, she lifts me up and I make a gesture so as not to fall, all this with a conversation in which I remind her – because she had missed a penalty – to cheer up a little, that without her we couldn’t have won the World Cup.

‘She tells me I’m a crack (a slang term of endearment in Spanish), thank you very much. And then I ask her, can I give you a little kiss, a little peck? And she tells me that it’s okay.’

The prosecutor then asked him, ‘If the kiss was consensual, why did you respond to it by holding her head with your hands?’

Rubiales’ reply was simple and already known, but embodied a well-placed example: ‘Well, out of joy. She grabs me wherever she can, I grab her too and that’s it. Two or three minutes later they all grabbed me and pulled me up, swinging me.

‘And at that moment I’m not going to say that they shouldn’t touch me, excuse me, my butt, my knees or my shoulder. We have won a World Cup and the tremendous euphoria and joy there is is indescribable.

‘It happened that way because when you win the lottery or a war ends, the war in Ukraine ends or you win a World Cup, well, that effusiveness, that spontaneity…’

FIFA revealed that the reason the former president was formerly given a 90-day suspension while he was still Spain’s FA president was to embolden witnesses within the federation to give their testimonies without fear. This decision is understandable, given that certain repercussions follow witnesses in cases where the accused still retains certain authority.

In fact, RFEF released a statement during the backlash that came to the former president from the kiss. The official statement was not neutral; it sided with Luis Rubiales.

It has been granted to prosecutors by the court that Luis Rubiales is to stay at least 200 metres away from Jenni Hermoso and that he should not, under any circumstances, contact her either directly or digitally. He is not to ring her too.

Jenni Hermoso is back to playing for her Mexican club as the case continues.

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