Violence has hurt Liga MX like never before and that is why it was the right time to take drastic decisions. Querétaro was harshly sanctioned by the Assembly of Owners after the unfortunate attacks committed by its cheering groups against Atlas fans in a match of the Clausura 2022 Tournament.
The matchday 9 match between Gallos Blancos and Rojinegros at La Corregidora Stadium, was going normally until the 62nd minute when everything changed. A brutal attack by the home team's cheering groups on the visiting fans forced the match to be stopped, as thousands of match attendees, including entire families, were forced to go down to the field to protect themselves from the outbreaks of violence in the stands.
The official report by the government of the city of Queretaro concluded that the outbreak of violence resulted in a total of 26 people injured (24 men and 2 women): 3 of them with serious injuries, 10 in a delicate condition, and 10 more in stable condition. According to this report, there were, fortunately, no fatalities.
Was Queretaro disaffiliated from Liga MX?
An Extraordinary Assembly of Owners of Liga MX, which lasted 3 hours, was held, headed by the president of the Mexican Soccer Federation, Yon de Luisa, in order to determine the sanctions that Querétaro deserved to receive for the most brutal outbreak of violence in the history of Mexican soccer.
There was even speculation that the team would be disaffiliated, however, this did not happen. For starters, the current Querétaro board, headed by businessman Gabriel Solares, was banned for five years from all ties with Liga MX. Solares and his group acquired the team from Grupo Caliente, a company focused on sports betting. After this sanction, control of the team returns to Jorge Hank, who has one year to be able to sell it again. Queretaro must pay a fine of 1.5 million pesos also.
What will happen to the Querétaro's Barras?
Another of the harsh sanctions that the Gallos Blancos received is the ban of their cheering group, cataloged as the main group responsible for the attack on Atlas fans at the Corregidora stadium. This group called la Resistencia Albiazul (the Blue and White resistance) will not be allowed to attend any of their team's home games for 3 years. They will also not be welcome in any other Liga MX stadium for one year. Likewise, the so-called Barra 51 of Atlas will not be able to attend to support their team for six months as visitors.
The Liga MX took the decision to implement new measures to eradicate violent episodes by the Barras of the teams. The first of these is the prohibition for all clubs in the league to support, with tickets or financially, these cheering groups, under penalty of receiving a one-match veto sanction.
Also for the 2022-2023 season, the use of a Fan ID will be mandatory for all members of the Liga MX clubs' cheering groups. This will complement the obligation for stadiums to have a facial recognition system to fully identify who attends them.
So far, the Queretaro State Attorney General's Office reported that 10 people allegedly involved in the attack on Atlas fans at the Corregidora stadium had already been arrested. The Atlas cheering group, the main group affected by the violent outbreaks, reported that 5 of its members are still missing.
The status of the Corregidora stadium after the violent incidents during the Queretaro vs Atlas match
For failing to comply with the safety standards required to host a Liga MX match, the Corregidora stadium was banned for one year. Querétaro will be able to play its home games there, but there will be no spectators in the stands during this time and a security operation will have to be carried out for three kilometers around the venue.
Queretaro vs Atlas match will be resumed?
As part of a strictly sporting sanction, it was determined that the Querétaro vs Atlas match of the Clausura 2022 Tournament will not be resumed. Up to the time it was suspended, Los Rojinegros were leading 0-1; however, the Liga MX's Assembly of Owners decided to give the 0-3 win to Atlas.