Spanish Football Federation president Luis Rubiales has apologized for kissing midfielder Jenny Hermoso on the lips during her country’s triumph at the Women’s World Cup on Sunday in Sydney.
Kissing the 45-year-old midfielder Rubiales on the lips sparked a global backlash, but on Monday he said in a video clip released by Spanish television: “I definitely made a mistake and I have to admit it. bad intentions, in a moment of great joy. Here we see him (kiss) “okay, but on the outside he did nasty things”.
Rubiales added: “I have no choice but to apologize and learn from this. Representing the federation, I should be more careful,” criticizing the uproar caused by this issue.
Rubiales emphasized that he had a “great relationship” with Hermoso, who defended his federation’s president after kissing her: “I didn’t like it,” although she laughed during the conversation.
“It was a completely spontaneous act of reciprocity because of the great joy that comes with winning the World Cup,” Hermoso said in statements released by the Spanish Federation.
She added: “The President and I have a good relationship and his behavior towards all of us was wonderful and it was a natural gesture of affection and gratitude. We won the World Cup and we won’t back down from what’s important.”
Hermoso missed a penalty in the match, but Spain held on to beat England 1–0 thanks to a first-half goal by Olga Carmona.
This is the first time Spain have won the Women’s World Cup.