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Spanish government to oversee football federation after Luis Rubiales scandal

By primenewsghana
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The Spanish government has formed a special committee that will oversee the country's football federation (RFEF).

The committee will be in place until the governing body holds new elections following the scandal surrounding its former president, Luis Rubiales.

Rubiales was arrested earlier this month as part of a corruption investigation.

He is also separately due to go on trial for sexual assault for kissing Spain player Jenni Hermoso after last summer's World Cup final.

Hermoso said that the kiss "was not consensual" but Rubiales consistently denied any wrongdoing until his eventual resignation in September.

The government's involvement has come "in response to the crisis in the organisation and in defence of the general interest of Spain," said the country's National Sports Council (CSD).

"The Spanish government has taken this decision in order to correct the serious situation that the RFEF is going through and to allow the organisation to begin a period of regeneration," it added.

The council is the government agency that is responsible for sport in Spain and its statement added that the committee would be led by "independent persons of recognised prestige."

Football's world governing body Fifa and European governing body Uefa say they are closely monitoring the situation with great concern.

Fifa regulations state that member nations shall manage their affairs independently and without influence from third parties.

"Fifa and Uefa will seek additional information to assess the extent to which the CSD's appointment of the so-called 'Supervision, Normalisation and Representation Commission' may affect the RFEF's obligation to manage its affairs independently and without undue government interference," they said in a joint statement.

Investigations into corruption during Rubiales' tenure led to police raiding the RFEF headquarters in Madrid last month, resulting in the firing of other members of the federation.

Pedro Rocha, who was standing in as president, was also placed under investigation after he testified as a witness in the corruption probe.

Rocha was the only candidate to succeed Rubiales in becoming president permanently, and said he had "no knowledge nor, therefore, any responsibility for the facts that are being investigated”.

Spain won the women's World Cup in 2023 by beating England in the final, and are preparing to co-host the men's World Cup in 2030.