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Mexican Soccer Federation Fined $20K for Homophobic Chants by Fans at U.S. Soccer Team

The governing body of international soccer has fined the Mexican soccer federation $20,000 after fans again broke out in a homophobic chant, this time directed at the U.S. team during a recent World Cup qualifying game.

World soccer organization FIFA announced on December 19th that they fined Mexico “for various incidents involving unsporting conduct by fans, including homophobic chants in some instances.”

This referenced incident occurred during the last game against the U.S. when Mexican fans called out “Puuuutoooo!” at the top of their lungs, a word widely considered a homophobic slur in Spanish.

But this is hardly the first time FIFA has fined Mexico over fans using the slur.  Among others, in October the organization fined the Mexican federation $30,000 for the fan chants. And in January FIFA fined Mexico another $20,000 for the same offense.

The Mexican federation, though, insists that the chant is not an anti-gay slur and that calling it such is a misreading of Mexican culture.

“It’s an issue that requires more discussion, it is a chant that occurs in games and not just recently,” Mexican soccer general secretary Guillermo Cantu told ESPN Deportes.

“We will fight the sanction because we don’t agree with the connotation that FIFA has given the chant,” Cantu added. “We will try to explain to them that the chant in Mexico is not done for the purpose that FIFA has interpreted.”

Mexico has appealed the earlier rulings, and will likely appeal this one as well.

But the fines continue to pile up. As Fox Sports reports, “The new sanction is Mexico’s sixth in 13 months, putting the Mexican federation’s fines at $105,000 for homophobic chants in that time.”

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at igcolonel@hotmail.com.

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