Spanish football boss issues apology after controversial World Cup kiss on the lips
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President of the Spanish Football Federation Luis Rubiales has apologised for kissing Jenni Hermoso during Spain’s FIFA Women’s World Cup celebrations.
The move sparked outrage online, with fans and journalists branding the move inappropriate and unnecessary.
Nadia Tronchoni, who leads sports coverage at the newspaper El País, described the kiss as an 'intrusion', adding: “[It's] an invasion of one’s personal space. Without consent. An aggression.”
Rubiales was questioned about the incident by various outlets and hit back to defend himself.
Speaking to the Spanish programme El Partidazo, the football boss said he would 'not pay attention to the idiots'.
He continued: "It's a peak of two friends celebrating something. We're not here for bulls***. Me, with everything I've been through, more bulls*** and more a**holes, no.
"Let's ignore it and enjoy the good stuff and don't even tell me things about losers who can't see [the positive].
"It is a thing without evil. If there are fools, let them continue with their nonsense. There are more fools than windows. Let's pay attention to those who are not fools. It is something without evil and nonsense."
Rubiales added that people were 'wasting time' by discussing the incident.
He further dismissed the backlash in an interview with Radio Marca, when he commented: "The kiss with Jenni? There are idiots everywhere.
"When two people have an insignificant show of affection, we cannot pay attention to idiocy. We are champions, and with that, I stay."
However, in a new video released by the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), Rubiales has now apologised and said: "We are facing a historic event, one of the happiest days in Spanish football. We are world champions, something for which we have been working hard and for which we feel proud.
"But there is also a fact that I have to regret. And that is all what happened between me and a player, with whom there is a magnificent relationship and where I was surely wrong.
"In a moment of maximum effusiveness without any bad intentions and no bad faith, it happened in a very spontaneous way.
"Here we did not understand the controversy and there has been a commotion outside… that if there are people who have felt damaged because of this, I have to apologise and learn from this, there is no other option.
"I have to learn from this and understand that when I am the president of an institution as important as the Federation, I have to be more careful in ceremonies and this type of issue."