Pedro Rocha: Sports court calls for six-year ban for Spanish FA president


Spain’s superior sports court (TAD) has called for RFEF (Spanish FA) president Pedro Rocha to be banned for six years, as the legacy of his now disgraced predecessor Luis Rubiales continues to haunt the federation.

The TAD judgement can be appealed during a period of 10 days, after which a formal vote will take place which could remove Rocha from his position, in the week when Spain are playing a last-16 game at the European Championship.

Rubiales handpicked Rocha as his successor shortly before being banned from all football activities for FIFA last August, due to Rubiales’ behaviour at that month’s women’s World Cup.

Rocha acted as federation chief for eight months, including taking decisions to fire some of Rubiales’ closest associates, before assuming the full-time presidency in April.

No other candidate was able to gain any support among the assembly of voting federation members, so Rocha assumed that role without any vote, despite being under investigation himself for a role in potential corruption when he was a vice-president during Rubiales’ term. Rocha has strongly denied any wrongdoing while in his role as Rubiales’ vice-president.

The TAD has now issued a judgement, which has been seen by The Athletic, which says he overstepped his legal authority in three different decisions, with a proposed punishment of two-year bans for each ‘serious’ breach of his permitted powers.

The news broke less than 24 hours after Rocha had attended Spain’s 1-0 Group B victory over Italy on Thursday night, sitting in the VIP area at the stadium alongside Spanish King Felipe VI.

When Rocha assumed the full-time presidency in April, the Spanish government reacted by appointing a commission of “supervision, normalisation and representation” headed by former national coach Vicente Del Bosque to oversee reform at the federation.

Despite that, Rocha, with support from UEFA and FIFA, has been able to maintain control, with Del Bosque not even being present as a representative of Spanish football at important dates like the men’s Champions League final or the ongoing Euros in Germany.

(Johnathan Nackstrand/AFP via Getty Images)

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