During a Primera Iberdrola match between Barcelona and Rayo Vallecano, the Barça physio was pictured treating opposing players, as Rayo do not provide medical staff for its women’s team.
Barcelona triumphed 4-0 against Rayo, with Jana Fernández, Melanie Serrano, Jennifer Hermoso and Aitana Bonmatí all on the scoresheet for the hosts.
The most striking moment of the match came during an injury, however.
With a Rayo player down on the floor, she was treated by the Barcelona physio. An image of the incident was shared on Twitter with the caption: “This continues to happen day after day.”
Women’s football fans soon provided context – Rayo Vallecano do not provide medical staff for its female players, forcing the physios on the opposing team to get involved.
“Rayo Vallecano doesn’t have their own medical staff so they have to use their opposition’s,” sports journalist Alex Ibaceta explained.
“It’s just part of what the club and its president deny their women’s team. This is really sad to see when Spanish women’s football has been on such a big rise.”
Another Twitter account wrote: “What you see here is Barcelona’s medical team tending to their rival’s player because Rayo Vallecano doesn’t have a medical team available for its players.
“How is this allowed? Having a medical team is the absolute bare minimum and yet….”
The union for Spanish female football players reported the conditions at Rayo Vallecano to the country’s Department of Work and Social Security in November.
Complaints included the lack of medical staff, poor training facilities, a lack of housing, and underpayment.
The Rayo Vallecano players also staged a protest to highlight their poor working conditions in November, halting their match with Real Madrid after just 30 seconds.
Their actions are yet to persuade the club to invest properly in the women’s team, however, and the female players continue to suffer.
Rayo Vallecano are currently ranked 15th in the Primera Iberdrola, just three points off bottom-placed Villarreal.
They have lost nine matches so far this season, also recording two losses and two draws. Rayo have scored nine goals, but conceded 33.
In comparison, the men’s team are fourth in La Liga, most notably defeating Barcelona in October.