FIFA decided not to sanction an Argentine coach denounced for sexual harassment in women’s football

The FIFA Ethics Committee decided not to sanction Diego Alberto Guacci, the Argentine technical director denounced for sexual harassment and abusive behavior by five female soccer players.

The world soccer union FIFPro reported that the Adjudicatory Chamber of the FIFA Ethics Commission decided “not to sanction an Argentine coach for sexual harassment and abusive conduct.”

For the first time since the case became public, for the FIFPro complaint in May of last year, The name of the accused was published, Diego Alberto Guacci, a coach with experience in River Plate, UAI Urquiza and the Argentine women’s teams under 15 and under 17.

“Five soccer players presented strong and credible evidence against the coach. They recounted how, over several years, they were victims of shocking and recurrent mistreatment by the professional who had the duty to safeguard them as adolescents and young people,” FIFPro remarked in its statement where it repudiates FIFA’s actions, indicating that “The FIFA Ethics Committee’s decision raises questions about how much evidence is needed for disciplinary action and could prevent other players from facing perpetrators of harassment and abuse in the future.”

FIFpro also criticized the “lack of gender diversity” in the Ethics Commission (the three members who signed the ruling are men) and “the duration of the investigation” that began in 2020.

After the decision, the complaining players have no possibility to appeal the decision of FIFA and such action depends on the head of the investigation.

Finally, FIFPro warned about the end of the text that “it will continue to support female soccer players who courageously speak out against abuse, harassment and discrimination” and that it will continue to collect information and documentation to “strengthen any appeal and help all female players in Argentina and the rest of the world can play their game freely and safely”.

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FIFA, meanwhile, stated at the end of the document that the decisions made by the Adjudication Room “are final” and will be “subject to appeals filed with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS)”.

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