Former Venezuela head coach Kenneth Zseremeta has been accused of sexually abusing players for nine years ©Getty Images

A total of 24 players from Venezuela's women's football team have signed a letter accusing former coach Kenneth Zseremeta of sexual harassment and abuse.

Atletico Madrid star Deyna Castellanos signed and published the joint letter on her social media, accusing Zseremeta - who led women's teams across various levels for nine years until 2017 - of physical, psychological and sexual abuse.

The players said they had "decided to break the silence to avoid the situations of abuse and harassment, physical, psychological and sexual."

The letter claimed that one unidentified player had been sexually abused by the coach since she was 14.

Zseremeta also repeatedly asked them about their sexuality and sexual orientation, adding there were cases of "physical and psychological abuse during training" sessions, it is claimed.

Other forms of alleged "frequent harassment" included phone calls with invitations, massages and inappropriate gifts.

"Today we understand that these actions had the intent of manipulating us and making us feel guilty," the letter said.

"Players of the LGBTI [lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex] community were constantly questioned for their sexual orientation and the harassment of the heterosexual (players) was constant.

Deyna Castellanos posted the letter condemning Kenneth Zseremeta on her Twitter page ©Getty Images
Deyna Castellanos posted the letter condemning Kenneth Zseremeta on her Twitter page ©Getty Images

"There were threats and manipulation about telling parents of the players about their sexual orientation if they did not obey or perform as expected."

The Venezuelan Football Federation fired Zsemereta in 2017, who was then the coach of the country’s Under-20 women’s national team, days after several of his players complained about malnourishment during the country’s severe economic crisis.

At the time, the organisation said he was sacked due to poor results.

The players have called on "all relevant people - FIFA, confederations, federations and leagues - not to allow this 'coach' to continue his life in women's football."

The allegations in Venezuela come after the National Women's Soccer League in the United States was brought to a standstill by similar claims.

The North Carolina Courage coach Paul Riley was sacked after two players came forward with allegations of harassment and sexual coercion against him.

It prompted league Commissioner Lisa Baird to resign and cancel the weekend's fixtures.

FIFA and U.S. Soccer then opened investigations into why he was able to continue coaching, even after players brought concerns to the league.