Spain players arrive for International duty

Some of the Spanish players who previously announced their boycott of the national team have ultimately reported for international duty. This protest was initiated after the former president of the Spanish football federation, Luis Rubiales, kissed Jenni Hermoso following the Women’s World Cup final last month. Six players residing in Madrid checked into a hotel in the capital before proceeding to join the rest of the team in Valencia. From there, they will travel to Sweden for a Nations League match on Thursday.

Among the six players are five from Real Madrid (Olga Carmona, scorer of the winning goal in the World Cup final against England, Misa Rodriguez, Oihane Hernandez, Teresa Abelleira, and Athenea del Castillo) along with Atletico Madrid forward Eva Navarro. All these players have voiced their support for the boycott. When asked by a reporter if she was content to be in the squad, goalkeeper Rodriguez responded with a “no” upon arrival at the hotel.

Spanish journalist Guillem Balague explained that the players checked into the hotel due to the potential legal consequences of not showing up, which could include exclusion from the national team and fines. The players are expected to engage in discussions with the federation and government to continue negotiations, having previously called for reforms within the federation.

Jennifer Hermoso, who was not included in the squad, released a statement asserting that summoning players who are participating in the boycott indicates that “nothing has changed” at the country’s football federation. Montse Tome, the new head coach, stated that Hermoso was left out “to protect her,” but Hermoso pointed out discrepancies after the federation promised “a safe environment.”

Hermoso also accused the federation of employing “manipulation” to “intimidate” players and expressed her solidarity with the players “who have been caught by surprise and forced to react to another unfortunate situation caused by the people who continue to make decisions within the RFEF.”

After the call-ups were announced, the players issued a statement reaffirming that the boycott remains in effect and expressing regret at being once again “placed in a position we never wanted to be in.” They indicated their intention to explore potential legal consequences of being called up against their wishes.

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