Mary Earps has expressed her disappointment that Spain’s “incredible” World Cup triumph was overshadowed by controversy, specifically Luis Rubiales kissing star striker Jenni Hermoso during the trophy presentation.
Despite an inspired performance by Earps, who saved a second-half penalty, Spain defeated the Lionesses 1-0 in the World Cup final in August. However, the focus shifted away from Spain’s achievement due to the post-match incident.
Three weeks after the controversial kiss, Luis Rubiales resigned amid widespread condemnation, and manager Jorge Vilda was sacked.
The situation escalated as star striker Jenni Hermoso, supported by the Spanish prosecutor, pressed charges. In September, Spain’s players threatened to boycott the national team unless significant changes were made to the women’s football set-up.
On the situation, Earps told GQ: “They’ve [Spanish players] managed to voice their concerns in a really thorough way, which is fantastic. But ultimately it’s come off the back of a situation where they’ve won the World Cup and everybody just seems to be talking about the controversy that surrounded it, which is such a shame. I’d rather shine light on what an incredible team they are and what incredible football they play.”
Mary Earps and her Manchester United teammates are gearing up to face Manchester City in the first Manchester derby of the Women’s Super League (WSL) season. A victory at Old Trafford would see United extend their lead to five points over their local rivals and maintain pressure on the league leaders, Chelsea.