By removing the term “women’s football”from the name of its national team, the Spanish Football Federation hopes to show that it has”conceptually changed” its view of the sport.
It remains to be seen whether other countries will follow this example.
Spain took a step towards greater equality this week as part of an agreement between the governing body and its world champion national team. The two sides have been at odds since former federation president Luis Rubiales kissed player Jenni Hermoso on the mouth during the trophy ceremony when Spain were crowned world champions in Australia last month.
The name of the women’s national team traditionally contained the phrase “de fútbol femenino” – translated as “women’s football”. From now on, the men’s and women’s national teams will be officially called the “Selección Española de fútbol” or the “Spanish National Football Team”. ”
“We want this to be more than a symbolic change, but a conceptual change and the recognition that football is football, regardless of who plays it,” said the association’s interim president, Pedro Rocha.
The European football association UEFA has already held informal talks on how countries can deal with these naming issues, but no official proposal has been made.
Other countries, such as England and the United States, have created name equality and refer to them as “men’s” and “women’s” national teams.
The Spanish players, after weeks of open rebellion, managed to push for changes by demanding a complete reform of the federation after the kiss of Rubiales and the reaction to his behavior.
When Spanish football plunged into crisis, Rubiales finally resigned and the world cup coach Jorge Vilda was fired.
On Wednesday, most of the Spanish players ended their boycott of the national team after the government intervened to shape a deal to make immediate changes to the federation.
The Secretary General of the Federation, Andreu Camps, who is close to Rubiales, was also relieved of his duties.
The reforms were presented as an opportunity to further professionalize women’s football in the country and promote equal pay.