The Mexican Soccer Federation launched a campaign on Tuesday urging fans to refrain from anti-gay chants that drew fines from FIFA earlier this year. It may be a tough fight, judging by the plea’s failure to deter fans at a Mexican national team game Tuesday night.
Called “Embraced by Soccer,” the campaign consists of a couple of 30-second videos in which popular stars including forward Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez, captain and defender Rafael Marquez and midfielder Andres Guardado ask fans not to engage in discriminatory behaviour. Announced hours before Mexico hosted Canada in a 2018 World Cup qualifier for the CONCACAF region, the campaign didn’t stop fans at the capital’s Azteca Stadium from making the chants during the nighttime match won 2-0 by the home team. The message was played for the crowd before the game and at halftime.
In a statement, the soccer federation said the videos aim to discourage “a practice that is contrary to respect and the dignity of people.”