Spain may have defeated England 1-0 in the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup Final to win their first women’s world title in history, what followed suit was disastrous scenes revolving the World Cup-winning head coach Jorge Vilda as well as the Spanish FA (RFEF) president Luis Rubiales. The aftermath of these controversies saw the former be sacked by the RFEF while the latter is suspended by FIFA with a high possibility that he could join Jorge Vilda in the mass dismissal among the Spanish FA personnel in recent times.
What Happened to Jorge Vilda and Luis Rubiales?
During the celebration of Spain’s tumultuous journey to win their first FIFA Women’s World Cup, team manager Jorge Vilda was seen groping his female assistant while RFEF president Rubiales was kissing Spain’s and FC Barcelona Femení all-time leading goal scorer and legend Jenni Hermoso (Jenni), before proceeded to put his arms over the player and jokingly proposed to her afterwards.
In light of this outrageous wrongdoing, which was condemn by important authorities in the country namely prime minister Pedro Sánchez, Equalities minister Irene Montero and Sports minister Miquel Icet, coupled with Rubiales’s failed moves to persuade Jenni and team captain Ivana Andrés to appear with him in a public apology video, many have called for the sacking of the 46-year-old who assumed his current position more than half a decade ago, succeeding Juan Luis Larrea.
To make matters worse and to voice out their dissatisfaction towards Rubiales, almost all but one member in the FIFA Women’s World Cup-winning coaching staff have resigned, with Jorge Vilda being the exception case. As for the case of Vilda, who has been known to be a faithful ally of Rubiales, had also criticised Rubiales for his outrageous actions but did not call for the resignation of the president and even applauded the 46-year-old’s disputed public speech at RFEF’s Extraordinary General Assembly.
🚨 𝗢𝗙𝗜𝗖𝗜𝗔𝗟 | La RFEF destituye a Jorge Vilda como seleccionador nacional y director deportivo.
El técnico ha sido clave para el notable crecimiento del fútbol femenino y deja a España como campeona del mundo y segunda en el ranking FIFA.
— RFEF (@rfef) September 5, 2023
Jorge Vilda’s Troubled Past
In addition to Jorge Vilda’s stance for scandalous president Rubiales, the 42-year-old has not been a likeable figure in the Spain women’s national team, especially after Spain’s UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 Quarterfinal exit where La Roja was defeated by their 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup Final opponent England. News broke the internet when 15 members of the squad spoke to the RFEF for the removal of international squad considerations in upcoming matches and tournaments due to complaints over Vilda’s poor tactical approach in games, training conditions and player treatments.
As a consequence, only three members of the Las 15 incident were selected for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup squad for Spain, who went on to win its first and only women’s world title to date, sparking more issues to the troubled Spanish side. The win was immediately brushed aside due to Jorge Vilda’s and Rubiaeles’s behaviours, coupled with the former’s support towards the latter, the writing has been on the wall for the dismissal of the duo.
RFEF: “Sorry for the Pain and Additional Distress This Has Caused.”
After confirming the sacking of Jorge Vilda as the head coach of the women’s football team, RFEF’s interim president Pedro Rocha also issued a letter to offer an apology to the public due to the series of events and misconducts by Spanish officials during the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup. The statement goes: “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. Mr Rubiales’ actions do not represent the values defended by the Spanish federation, nor the values of Spanish society as a whole.
“His actions must be attributed solely and exclusively to him, since he is the one solely responsible for those actions before society, before the sports governing bodies and, if applicable, before justice. To be clear, this position was that of Mr Rubiales, not that of the RFEF. We feel especially sorry and ashamed for the pain and additional distress this has caused.”
🚨 𝗖𝗢𝗠𝗨𝗡𝗜𝗖𝗔𝗗𝗢 𝗢𝗙𝗜𝗖𝗜𝗔𝗟 | La RFEF pide disculpas al mundo del fútbol y al conjunto de la sociedad.
— RFEF (@rfef) September 5, 2023