Spanish FA president Luis Rubiales was asked to move a Spain game by Gerard Pique so he could watch a tennis match with then-girlfriend Shakira.
That’s according to Spanish publication El Confidencial, who claim the Barcelona defender approached Rubiales ahead of Spain’s European Championship qualifer against Romania in November 2019 with the request.
Pique, who has made 102 appearances for La Roja during his career, was keen to attend a Davis Cup match in Madrid on Monday 18 November.
The former Manchester United centre-back, who is the president of Kosmos Tennis, a company that run the Davis Cup along with the ITF, said the following to Rubiales, according to the report.
“Rubi, we have to speak about an issue that is very important for me and you need to do me this favour one way or another. I will explain. I can see that there is a match, which is Spain-Romania on Monday the 18th of November.
“Monday the 18th of November the Davis Cup starts in Madrid, as well. Shakira will do the inauguration, my partner will sing, we will put on a insane show, in the afternoon there will be matches.
“Of course, if that same match between Spain and Romania at the Wanda is also on, we are cannibalising each other, we ruin each other. I don’t know what the calendar before is, I don’t know if it can be moved to Sunday, which would be perfect.
“I don’t know if you play Friday or Thursday… Let’s look at the calendar issue, but I know that you still haven’t started selling tickets and it would be possible to move it, therefore, let’s look at (it).”
Rubiales allegedly responded to the request, saying: “Ok I will look to see if it is possible, I don’t know if it is possible, but if it is possible, we will try it.”
But the Spain fixture went ahead as scheduled, with Robert Moreno’s side picking up a 5-0 win thanks to goals from Fabian Ruiz, Gerard Moreno , Adrian Rus [OG] and Mikel Oyarzabal.
Pique, meanwhile, did not feature in the squad.
The Pique news comes days after leaked audio of Sergio Ramos asking for help from the Spanish Football Federation to win the Ballon d’Or in 2020 emerged.
According to Spanish news outlet El Confidencial, the former Real Madrid captain was recorded having conversations with Rubiales.
During the conversation, the defender was heard pleading his case to become the winner of the prestigious award, and was openly asking for Rubiales’ support in his bid to become the first defender since Fabio Cannavaro to win it.
Ramos was allegedly heard saying: “You know that I’ve never asked you for anything but if I want to do it today it’s because I think this has been a special year for the performances I’ve delivered.
“I would like you to help me in whatever way you can and use your connections at UEFA linked to the Ballon d’Or.”
🚨🚨| Sergio Ramos asked RFEF president, Rubiales to use contacts and pull the strings of UEFA so that he could win the Ballon d’Or in 2020. Also Ramos complained about the referees in the Barcelona matches. [@elconfidencial] #fcblive pic.twitter.com/D8Whxcezgx
— BarçaTimes (@BarcaTimes) July 1, 2022
Rubiales also stated that while he has no power in deciding the winner of the award, he would be willing to help in any way he could.