FIFA has approved a reduction in the two match original ban for anti-gay chants handed Mexico during the Olympic qualifying matches last match. The Mexican Football Federation confirmed the reduction
A statement released by the FMF explained that due to the organization’s “efforts toward eradicating discrimination at matches,” FIFA decided to diminish the initial penalty.
“The Appeals Committee at FIFA has resolved that the sanction imposed by the Disciplinary Committee for two games without fans be reduced to one game. Said sanction must be enforced at the next official home match for any men’s age category,” the document read.
Mexico will enforce the ban on Sept. 2, when the senior men’s team faces Jamaica, kicking off its World Cup qualifying campaign at the Estadio Azteca.
El Tri’s second home qualifier is scheduled for Oct. 7 against Canada, a match currently set to feature fans in stands unless more penalties are handed down for incidents involving Mexico fans at the CONCACAF Nations League and Gold Cup earlier this year.
“We will be respectful [of any punishment handed down],” FMF president Yon De Luisa said at a news conference on Tuesday, before the revised ban was announced.
Prior to FIFA’s reduction, it was expected that Mexico would divide its two-match punishment between the senior men’s team and its senior women’s team, due to a loophole in the original wording of the statement announcing the sanctions.
In July, De Luisa announced the FMF had appealed the original ban, citing the implementation of a media campaign designed to educate fans and attempt to eradicate the anti-gay chant present at most Mexico men’s national team matches.