- Players have called for changes to be made at the Spanish Football Federation
- Higher Sports Council president Victor Franco is desperate to find a solution
- Listen to the latest episode of Mail Sport’s podcast It’s All Kicking Off!
Spain’s players have arrived at training after being forced to join up with the national team or face potential bans.
The team are due to play their first matches since winning the World Cup in the summer when they face Sweden and Switzerland in the Nations League on September 22 and 26 respectively.
Their success at the tournament has been majorly overshadowed, however, with former Spanish FA president Julien Rubiales kissing star striker Jenni Hermoso on the lips during the post-match presentation after the final.
Rubiales’ actioned triggered outrage, and he is now facing charges of sexual assault and coercion following the incident.
Several of Spain’s squad had made it clear they did not want to represent their country for the foreseeable future, but they have now met up as a squad with a potential ban having loomed.
New manager Montse Tome named her squad for the fixtures on Monday which included 15 World Cup winners, but the team have since reaffirmed their intention to go on strike.
The players argued that several of the same issues were present despite the resignation of Rubiales and sacking of manager Jorge Vilda, a close ally of Rubiales.
Some of the squad travelled to Madrid to meet, while others went straight to Valencia for training ahead of the matches.
The squad arrived at the Tryp Alameda Aeropuerto Hotel, with staff the first to arrive at 11am on Tuesday.
Misa Rodriguez then followed as the first player to arrive, joined by Olga Carmona, Oihane Hernandez, Tere Abelleira and Athenea del Castillo,
The Spanish players have called for structural changes to be made regarding the national team and the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), with 39 players signing a statement last week confirming they will make themselves unavailable for selection until these alterations have been made.
It has now emerged that the players could face serious consequences if they stick to the stance, with the country’s Sports Law stating that players can be disqualified for up to five years for refusing to play for their nation.
Players could also be given fines ranging from €3,000-€30,000 (£2,600-£25,900).
According to Guillem Balague, the Spanish government have promised total transformation and elections in Spanish women’s football and have asked for time in exchange for the players featuring for the national side.
Spain goalkeeper Misa Rodriguez was one of the players mobbed by the media as she arrived at the team hotel in Madrid and she was asked if she was happy to be named in the squad.
‘No’, she replied, adding via Marca: ‘I already said all the things I had to say in my statement. I think I was clear. I said I was going to be here, so thank you all very much.’
Other players, including the eight Barcelona stars called up, will meet at the Oliva Nova Beach & Gold Resort
Higher Sports Council president Victor Francos has revealed he will be speaking to the players today to try to find a solution as he wants to avoid imposing sanctions on the team.
‘I hope that the call (to play for Spain) has been agreed upon with them. If they do not show up, the Government will have to apply the law, to my shame; but the law is the law,’ Francos said.
‘Early tomorrow (Tuesday) I will call a series of people from the National Team to talk to them. I think there is a moment in which the Government must intervene; not everything goes. I cannot assure anyone that I will solve it, but I will try.
‘We are going to tell the players that the Government’s commitment is with all the subsequent consequences; we are going to do what is necessary to solve it, but we ask them to go to.
‘We want them to be Olympic champions. I’m going to try to talk to the captains; if they tell me no, I will respect it. What we don’t want is to sanction them.’
IT’S ALL KICKING OFF!
It’s All Kicking Off is an exciting new podcast from Mail Sport that promises a different take on Premier League football.
It is available on MailOnline, Mail+, YouTube, Apple Music and Spotify.