Former Real Madrid striker Morientes plans run for presidency of AFE players union

Former Real Madrid striker and Spain international Fernando Morientes is ‘seriously considering’ running for the presidency of the AFE Spanish players union.

Morientes enjoyed a distinguished playing career – which also included successful spells at Monaco, Liverpool, Valencia and Marseille – and is now set to challenge the current incumbent David Aganzo, whom he previously played alongside in Madrid.

Aganzo has been president of the AFE since winning 98.58% of the election held in November 2017 but has come under criticism in recent times.

Like Morientes, Aganzo was also a striker during his playing days and he had replaced Luis Rubiales – who subsequently became president of the Spanish FA – in the role.

Aganzo has been in the spotlight recently over allegations of a bribe, as outlined by El Mundo Deportivo, while he has also been at the forefront of a number of union-related issues.

He has been at the heart of the discussions over football wage cuts in light of the coronavirus pandemic, the battle from Spanish women footballers to gain professional working rights and also for his opposition to La Liga’s plans to move matches abroad.

“I am proud to see that I still have the values ​​from my time in football,” Morientes told an interview with Cope, as cited by El Mundo Deportivo, and saying that he is ‘seriously considering’ the role.

“I have been called by players, friends and even Coaches who I did not know to take the step and the feeling is that they do not agree with what the AFE is doing, and that they are not representative.

“If anyone thinks that (La Liga president, Javier) Tebas has orchestrated this, they are very wrong. This is something I have not sought. It has been a pleasant surprise to have so much support. I don’t have a trade union background, but football has given me everything and if the players ask for me I can’t look the other way.

“The image of the AFE has been damaged by power struggles, by the disunity of players and as an affiliate it hurts me. The players want a change and without that momentum from the players I would not even think about it, but I am thinking about it.”

Tags AFE David Aganzo Fernando Morientes