The Spanish women’s national team is in turmoil after 15 players said they will refuse to play unless head coach Jorge Vilda is sacked.
The Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) said they had received 15 emails calling for Vilda to be removed, with the players saying the current situation “significantly” affects their “emotional state and health”.
In an extraordinary statement, the RFEF rejected the call and threatened to ban the mutineers if they did not “accept their mistake and ask for forgiveness”.
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“The RFEF is not going to allow the players to question the continuity of the national coach and his coaching staff, since making those decisions does not fall within their powers,” it read.
The federation said they only want “committed” players and insisted they would field youth players if they had to.
“This fact has gone from being a sporting issue to a dignity issue. The selection is non-negotiable. It is an unprecedented situation in the history of football, both male and female, in Spain and worldwide," the statement continued.
“The national team needs players committed to the project, defending our colours and proud to wear the Spain shirt.
“The players who have submitted their resignation will only return to the discipline of the national team in the future if they accept their mistake and ask for forgiveness.”
Vilda, 41, took charge of the national team in 2015.
Spain bowed out of Euro 2022 to hosts England in the quarter-finals. They have since won two World Cup qualifiers against Hungary and Ukraine.
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