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USWNT’s Megan Rapinoe stands with boycotting Spanish players

Megan Rapinoe scores a goal against Spain during the 2019 Women's World Cup. (Marc Atkins/Getty Images)

U.S. women’s national team star Megan Rapinoe expressed her support for the Spanish national team in a message posted Thursday to her Instagram.

Fifteen players on Spain’s national team asked not to be called up to the squad until their concerns were addressed.

The Spanish federation claimed the players had resigned the team in refusal to play under coach Jorge Vilda, but the players took issue with that characterization. In any case, the Spanish federation threw its support behind Vilda, taking a hard-line approach.

“The RFEF is not going to allow the players to question the continuity of the national coach and his coaching staff, since making those decisions does not fall within their powers,” the Spanish soccer association said.

Rapinoe added her voice to the player protest, backing the Spanish team on social media.

“You got a 16th standing with you in (the United States),” Rapinoe wrote. “This many players together like this is so powerful. We should all listen.”

The USWNT is scheduled to travel to Spain for an Oct. 11 friendly in Pamplona.