The Spanish football federation on Saturday accused Women’s World Cup player Jenni Hermoso of “lies” about her kiss with federation president Luis Rubiales and threatened to take legal action.
The federation (RFEF) and Rubiales said they would “demonstrate each of the lies that have been spread, whether in the name of the player, if that is the case, or by the player herself”
It would take “as many legal actions as necessary to defend the honour of the President of the RFEF.”
Hermoso said on Friday she did not consent to being kissed on the lips following Spain’s World Cup triumph against England, as Rubiales had claimed.
Rubiales refused to resign on Friday despite widespread criticism, saying he was the target of a campaign to get rid of him.
In a fiery speech, he said the kiss was “mutual, euphoric and consensual” and Hermoso had said “OK” when he asked her if he could give her “a peck”.
He also asserted that “she was the one who lifted me in her arms and brought me close to her body”.
However Hermoso hit back strongly against his claims, saying she felt “vulnerable and the victim of an assault”.
“I want to clarify that at no time did I consent to the kiss that he gave me and in no case did I seek to lift up the president,” Hermoso said in the statement released through her Futpro union.
Hermoso has joined a strike of women players in protest at Rubiales’ behaviour.