Spain’s new women’s head coach Montse Tome has explained the team is ‘with Jenni Hermoso in everything’ after the star was omitted from the country’s upcoming Nations League squad.
Hermoso joins a host of World Cup winners not included in the upcoming squad after many refused to be called up due to the ongoing crisis surrounding the women’s team and the Spanish FA.
La Roja’s new head coach, Tome, replaced World Cup winning manager Jorge Vilda and has now named her first squad, but is without key players who have rejected call-ups due to insufficient structural changes.
The 23 stars from the World Cup campaign were reportedly joined by 12 of the famous ‘Las 15’ – who chose to self-exile themselves from an international call up last year – and a number of other Spanish footballers, taking the number up to 41.
A total of 81 players had already signed a letter last month stating that they would reject the call-up until there was a change in leadership at the Spanish FA.
Spain’s new women’s head coach Montse Tome (pictured) decided to omit Jenni Hermoso from her upcoming squad
Hermoso has been left out of the squad in an apparent move to ‘protect’ the player
Hermoso has been in the spotlight since she was kissed on the medal podium at the World Cup final by the now-resigned Spanish FA president Luis Rubiales and won’t be making a return to the national team anytime soon, with Tome explaining leaving her out the team is the best way to ‘protect her’.
‘We are with Jenni in everything and with all the players, the best way to help them is to be with them and listen to them, said Tome as she revealed her first Spain squad.
‘The best way to protect her is like this, I have worked a lot with her,’ she added.
Spain will travel to take on Sweden in their first Nations League game on Friday before hosting Switzerland in Cordoba.
Meanwhile, Rubiales is battling charges of sexual assault and coercion, while controversial former manager Vilda labelled his sacking as ‘unfair’.
Tome had been set to announce her squad on Friday before the players released a damning statement against the FA which read: ‘The changes made are not enough for the players to feel safe, where women are respected, where there is support for women’s football and where we can maximise our potential.
‘The players of the Spanish team have, at all times, been open to dialogue, seeking to convey clear and well-argued reasons that we believe are necessary to be able to carry out our work at the highest level with the respect we deserve.
Hermoso will instead focus on club duties with Mexican team Pachuca during the international break
Hermoso (middle) joins a host of World Cup stars in not being called up but Alexia Putellas (left) will feature
‘The specified changes to the RFEF are based on zero tolerance for those people who, from a position within the RFEF, have had, incited, hidden or applauded attitudes that go against the dignity of women.
‘We firmly believe that strong changes are required in leadership positions in the RFEF and specifically, in the area of women’s football.
‘We want to end this statement by expressing that the players of the Spanish team are professionals, and what fills us most with pride is wearing the shirt of our national team and leading our country to the highest positions.’
‘We believe that it is time to fight to show that these situations and practices have no place in football or society, that the current structure needs changes and we do it so that the next generations can have equality in football and at the level that we all deserve.’