Osorio defends Mexico fans after FIFA's latest discriminatory chant warning
SOCHI, Russia (AP) – FIFA warned Mexico about the conduct of its fans on Tuesday at the Confederations Cup, but the country's coach maintained that the chants are not discriminatory.
The homophobic abuse was heard during Mexico's opening game against Portugal in Kazan on Sunday despite FIFA warning on the eve of the World Cup warm-up tournament that there would be tighter monitoring of offensive incidents in stadiums.
FIFA said disciplinary committee chairman Anin Yeboah ''decided to impose a warning on the Mexican Football Federation for the misconduct of a small group of Mexican fans in relation to insulting and discriminatory chants.''
Mexico has been sanctioned eight times over the same gay slurs by fans in the current World Cup qualifying campaign by international soccer's governing body.
''I understand why the crowd chants and I don't think the interpretation made internationally is right,'' Mexico coach Juan Carlos Osorio said through a translator ahead of Wednesday's Group A match against New Zealand at the Confederations Cup. ''I hope the Mexican federation will tell FIFA again that this doesn't mean what people think it means.''