The Mexican National Soccer Team has released a video asking fans to stop chanting “puto” at stadiums, otherwise FIFA’s policies could thwart the team’s World Cup chances.
In the video (below), various players and suits from Mexico’s National Team say:
“Do you notice all the chants in a match? Chants? There are plenty. But there is only one that can silence us — ‘puto.’ [It can] throw us out of the World Cup.
The situation is this: If you scream ‘puto,’ the referee stops the match and makes you leave the stadium. If the chants continue, the referee halts the game and he could send the players back to the locker rooms. If it happens again, the next match would be behind closed doors. If it’s with the National Team, we could lose the match.
This is serious. This is FIFA’s new rule all over the world. Because of a chant, we can be left out of the game. The World Cup means a lot for everyone. It’s the excitement of millions. Not because of a few everyone should lose. I
If you see someone swearing, point them out. We will see you at the stadium. Shout anything you want, except the chant that leaves us out of the game.”
The video ends with the hashtag #FueraDelJuego, which literally translates to “Out of the game” or “offsides,” a soccer rules that says an attacking player can’t be too close to their opponent’s goal.
Here’s the video:
FIFA’s “new” rule referenced in the video has actually been around since 2017, FIFA just re-emphasized it this last July.
Mexican soccer fans have long used “puto” as an insulting homophobic chant. But even though the word colloquially means “faggot,” in 2014, the national team’s World Cup coach defending the chants as a way to psyche-out goalies. In 2016, the Mexican Soccer Federation claimed the chant wasn’t homophobic and appealed FIFA’s fines for it.
However, in April 2016 Mexico’s national team declared the slur discriminatory and created a campaign to fight it. Then, in 2017, the Mexican Soccer Federation asked fans not to repeat the slurs, stating, “If they suspend the game or if they expel you from the stadium; we lose, you lose, we all lose.”
The request worked. During the country’s June 2017 match against New Zealand, “puto” was nowhere to be heard.