All Mexico soccer fans are banned from upcoming matches over continued use of homophobic chants

Mexico’s soccer fans have been banned from attending World Cup qualifiers after they repeatedly used homophobic slurs and chants at previous events.

“Let’s stop now, please. The (expletive) chant is discriminatory and is moving us away from FIFA competitions. To those who think it’s fun to yell it out, I have news for you. It’s not,” said Mexican Football Federation president Yon De Luisa.

The FIFA Disciplinary Committee has imposed a $73,000 fine on the Mexican National Team and has decided that the team will be forced to play their two upcoming World Cup qualifier matches in empty stadiums after fans continued to use homophobic chants during matches in March against the Dominican Republican and the USA.

“FIFA statement makes it official: Mexico will have to play two World Cup qualifiers in empty stadiums as punishment for homophobic chants,” tweeted Henry Bushnell.

It is well known in the world of soccer that Mexico fans have a long history of using homophobic chants during matches, resulting in numerous fines and threats to the national team over the years. However, the ban on fans and the $73,000 fine is the strongest punishment the team has received. FIFA released its own disciplinary code to combat offensive language used by spectators in July of 2019. According to the code, spectators are to be given one warning by officials, if they continue then officials must abandon the match altogether and send all players back to the locker rooms.

Mexico fans contend that the specific slur used against gay men has several meanings in Spanish, causing a debate on whether the word could be banned, considering it has multiple uses. However, De Luisa said it’s clear the context in which that specific word is being used, and it should be avoided.

“For many years, that was the debate for us at the Mexican federation,” De Luisa said. “That is no longer a debate. If it is discriminatory, we should avoid it.”

“There’s a million ways to show interest toward your team,” he continued. “Without discriminating. So we should focus on the positive ways. This is something that we are not proud of. This is not the image that we want to show from our fans and from our society to the rest of the world.”