Spain’s football association president Luis Rubiales announced in an interview that he would resign from his position following the kissing scandal at the World Cup. When asked by presenter Piers Morgan if he would resign, Rubiales said: “Yes, I will.” He added that he could not continue his work. Morgan published a short excerpt from the interview with the 46-year-old on Sunday evening on Portal X (formerly Twitter). According to Morgan, the conversation was said to have taken place this Sunday. The full episode of the talk show “Piers Morgan Uncensored” has not yet been broadcast. A statement of similar content was also published on X, which Spanish media attributed to Rubiales. There was initially no official confirmation from the Spanish association RFEF.

Rubiales kissed player Jennifer Hermoso on the mouth at the award ceremony after Spain won the World Cup final in Sydney on August 20. This, and an angry speech in which he attacked the government and the media and accused a “false feminism” of wanting to “publicly execute” him, prompted numerous calls from politics, sport and the media for his resignation. Media wrote about a Spanish “MeToo” moment. The world governing body FIFA suspended him for 90 days, the government initiated proceedings against Rubiales before the sports court and the regional presidents of the RFEF called for his resignation.

But Rubiales clung to his post. The kiss was mutual, he said. Hermoso repeatedly denied this, saying she felt “the victim of an impulsive, sexist and inappropriate act to which I did not consent.” The 33-year-old filed a complaint against Rubilaes. This in turn enabled the public prosecutor’s office to file a criminal complaint for sexual harassment and coercion.

Now an examining judge at the “Audiencia Nacional” in Madrid must decide whether the criminal complaint will be accepted and whether investigations will be initiated that could lead to a trial. Experts estimate that former professional Rubiales could be sentenced to between one and four years in prison if he actually goes to the dock and is found guilty at trial.