Gotham FC shows team support for Jenni Hermoso at home
HARRISON, NJ – NJ/NY Gotham FC came away with a single point following a scoreless draw against Racing Louisville on Sunday night at Red Bull Arena, but there was something more important than the scoreboard on display. Donning wristbands with the message “Contigo Jenni,” Gotham players and staff joined others from around the world to show unified support for Jenni Hermoso in the aftermath of the Spanish FA president Luis Rubiales giving Hermoso an unwanted kiss at the World Cup trophy ceremony last week.
“It’s massive,” said goalkeeper Mandy Haught on the worldwide solidarity behind Hermoso and her teammates on the Spanish national team. “As women athletes we need to have each others back and for us to do it across the world is amazing to be apart of. We support [Hermoso] one hundred percent.”
National Women’s Soccer League fans and players are unfortunately no strangers to standing behind players amidst misconduct allegations, making their voices all the more essential in the chorus of those who have already come together in support of the Spanish players.
“We obviously don’t condone any misconduct and there’s no space for it in the sport,” said Lynn Williams fresh off her World Cup return. “Everybody knows that in the NWSL we have had our own issues, so I just feel like right now is the time to come together. We support [Hermoso], we support the players first and foremost no matter what. So it’s just a little thing [to wear the wristbands] that we can do to show our support.”
“These are serious issues and we want to make it known that we’re behind anybody and everybody that goes through something like this, because they just shouldn’t have to,” said Player of the Match Yazmeen Ryan. “We fully support Jenni.”
As a Spanish coach, Juan Carlos Amorós only hopes that the necessary change is near as the world unites around the Spanish players who have also been robbed of the opportunity to celebrate their World Cup.
“It’s been a very difficult week. For myself, the club, the players, we’re all obviously supporting Jenni and her teammates. For us it was very important to be able to get to this game and show it, and make sure we protect the players in a better way worldwide,” said an emotional Amorós after Sunday’s match. “It’s a bit heartbreaking for me. I’m a male coach from Spain, I know how much work has been done behind the scenes to make sure that [the Spanish women’s national team] got a World Cup. It’s very sad and it’s been emotionally hard for me to see everything around the world, but at the same time I think it was necessary that something like this happened where everyone is united. I hope it’s a beginning of a bigger change worldwide, but especially in Spain.”