Violent behavior by players and supporters unhappy at referees’ decisions at Spanish lower league soccer matches is a long-standing problem, as one recent case demonstrates.
Andalusia’s soccer federation has said it is investigating an incident on April 26 that followed a women’s Centenary Cup match between Arenas de Armilla and Numancia. The referee, 17-year-old Águeda Rodríguez, was jostled and insulted by players, staff, and supporters of Granada-based Arenas de Armilla following an incident that led to the team’s coach being expelled from the touchline.
It is especially sad that other women would make these kinds of sexist comments”
Andalusia soccer federation representative José Manuel Molina
“They prevented me from entering [the locker room] and insulted me, saying: ‘You’re a bitch. All you’re good for is cleaning toilets,’” said Rodríguez in the complaint she filed with the Andalusian soccer federation.
She also said that she was shoved by several players. “Three pushes threw me violently against the wall of the tunnel.”
“We are very sorry to see these kinds of things happen. They are unpleasant, and we will apply the appropriate sanction,” said José Manuel Molina, a representative of Andalusia’s soccer federation. “Fortunately, she was not injured, but it is especially sad that other female fans and players would make these kinds of sexist comments.”
Rodríguez has been a referee for two years, and hopes to turn professional eventually.