Spain to resolve 'unacceptable' situation at Spanish Football Federation. GETTY IMAGES

The Spanish government promised on Tuesday to take action against the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) after it was hit by a series of scandals. Its former president, Luis Rubiales, is under investigation for corruption and now his successor, Pedro Rocha, is being investigated by the Supreme Court of Sports.

"The Spanish government is committed to resolving the 'unacceptable' state of the federation," the Spanish executive said last Tuesday, promising to tackle the scandalous situation in which the RFEF finds itself. Scandal after scandal, Spanish officials fear that FIFA may doubt the country's ability to host the 2030 World Cup.

José Manuel Uribes, president of the Supreme Sports Council (CSD) and secretary of state for sport, insisted that the scandals would have "absolutely no impact" on Spain's bid to host the 2030 World Cup. "I talk to FIFA almost every day, I think there has never been such fluid communication," he added. 

"They are sure that Spain is a country that knows how to organise things... The World Cup is not in danger," he declared. But credibility may be at stake. Every week brings a new chapter in the corruption scandal that has engulfed FIFA's top brass.

First there was former president Luis Rubiales, who resigned last September after forcibly kissing the winner of the Women's World Cup, Jenni Hermoso, and is currently under investigation in a corruption case. 

Pedro Rocha, the only candidate for the presidency of the RFEF. GETTY IMAGES
Pedro Rocha, the only candidate for the presidency of the RFEF. GETTY IMAGES

His situation is critical after he was arrested on his return to Spain from the Dominican Republic, where he was at the start of the investigation, and his home and the RFEF headquarters were searched.

Rubiales has always insisted on his innocence, but every day more evidence emerges, putting him in a difficult position. Now the only candidate to replace Rubiales, Pedro Rocha, is also under investigation. A report by the country's Supreme Sports Tribunal (TAD) suggests that the RFEF took decisions "beyond its competence."

"The Superior Sports Council (CSD) and the government will do everything possible to correct this unacceptable situation," said José Manuel Uribes, president of the CSD and secretary of state for sport.

According to Spanish media, the sports tribunal found that the RFEF management committee, which took over after Rubiales' resignation, had taken actions it did not have the authority to take, including the extension of men's team coach Luis de la Fuente's contract.

With so many scandals, the RFEF is very much in question. GETTY IMAGES
With so many scandals, the RFEF is very much in question. GETTY IMAGES

"I will call a meeting of the board in the next few days to take a decision following the resolution (of the TAD), which describes the actions of the RFEF president and the board in recent months as very serious," said Uribes.

With all this information, the CSD could declare Rocha, vice-president under Luis Rubiales and then interim head of the RFEF, ineligible for the presidency. He is the only candidate for the 6 May elections and now his credibility is at an all-time lowis the only candidate for the elections on 6 May.

The corruption investigation centres on the lucrative contract signed by Rubiales to move the Spanish Super Cup to Saudi Arabia. Former Barcelona and Spain international Gerard Piqué is also implicated.

"It is in the Government's interest to ensure that the investigation gets to the bottom of what happened," Uribes added. Far from clarifying the situation, it could become more complicated as Rocha is unwilling to have his honesty and integrity called into question.

According to the Spanish media, the only candidate for the RFEF presidency is not prepared to resign. He will defend himself in court. Since learning that he was under investigation, he has instructed his lawyers to study the actions of the CSD and the sports tribunal.

The newspaper 'As' reported that the former president of the RFEF's Administrative Commission could file a contempt complaint against those who signed resolutions that, in his opinion, did not respect the legality or the rights of Pedro Rocha. The RFEF itself has issued a statement on its disagreement with the CSD and its behaviour.