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Mexico joins Italy in its strategic soccer alliance

From the facilities of the Mexican embassy in Italy (located in Rome), the Mexican Soccer Federation (FMF)


From the facilities of the Mexican embassy in Italy (located in Rome), the Mexican Soccer Federation (FMF) and the MX League formalized the signing of a strategic agreement with their counterparts in Italy, the FIGC and Serie A, with the aim of exchanging knowledge on issues such as the training of technical bodies, improvement of refereeing practices, social responsibility, marketing, sports management, among others .

However, one of the objectives emphasized by Mikel Arriola, executive president of the MX Leagueand Yon De Luisa, president of the FMFwas to strengthen a relationship that allows Mexican soccer players emerged from basic forces (from the age of 13) to have more visibility in the European market to be able to emigrate at younger ages.

“What we want to communicate to Europe is that Mexico is one of the best trainers of professional players, we want to support young people so that their processes end not only in the Mexican First Division, but also in Europe. We talked about that with Hirving ‘Chucky’ Lozano (Mexican player for Napoli in Serie A) and he said that this has to be done in all leagues, because playing in Europe changes the disciplinary scheme, makes the players not feel comfortable and their level of competition tends to go up,” Arriola mentioned.

Serie A is the third top league with which Liga MX has signed an agreement in the last two years, after doing so with The league from Spain in May 2021 and with the German Bundesliga in May 2022. Although no specific actions were listed after these agreements, the three have the objective of exchanging practices and offering a window to young Mexicans who are products of basic forces.

“Our aspiration is to identify players from an earlier age and generate agreements where risk is shared between clubs so that they do not reach 18 years of age and force a transaction, but instead generate natural conditions for that transaction to take place from a development from the age of 13. , 15 or 17 years old. As a league we want to intervene in the information that the buyer has regarding a broader market where there are about 2,500 Mexican players. That is what we explained to the Bundesliga, to The league and now to Serie A”, stressed the executive president of Liga MX.

According to data from Liga MX, there are currently a total of 2,356 soccer players registered in five different categories of basic forces ranging from 13 to 20 years old, including one for women (under 17). Only in the most recent First Division tournament, Clausura 2022, 37% of registered players were products of national basic forces and 13% completed the process from the sub 13.

However, those almost 2,500 soccer players are contrasted with the vacancies that Mexicans currently occupy with these three top European leagues: there are only two in Serie A (Hirving Lozano and Johan Vásquez), none in the Bundesliga and four in LaLiga, which is the one with the greatest exposure (Andrés Guardado, Diego Lainez, Orbelín Pineda and Jesús Manuel Corona).

Despite this situation, Mikel Arriola hopes that the agreement with Italy will bring joint projects in the short term, as has already happened with the Bundesligasince only a few weeks after signing with the Germans, a match was held between Bayer Leverkusen and Toluca, in addition to the fact that at the end of this summer an under 17 tournament will be held between four Mexican teams, two from MLS, one from Spain and another from the Netherlands.

“We want to start giving a name and surname to young people who have a future and above all before the position of a Mexican club ends commercially, because we want them to be competitive with respect to the European market. We have few players in Europe because our league is a buyer, we are victims of our own success, when the moment of the transaction occurs, the Mexican player is offered more money in Mexico, so we want to see him leave beforehand,” said Arriola Peñalosa.

For his part, Yon De Luisa stressed that this is a “historic agreement” because “rarely in the world do the two federations and leagues from two countries sign,” so they hope to make the most of the association in terms of a wide range of themes.

“This agreement has two main axes: first, on the training for our technical bodies of all the men’s and women’s teams, as well as for all the members of the referees commission. Second, an exchange of information to share best practices in sports management, marketing, sports medicine, athlete recovery, social responsibility and all issues related to financial integrity and fair play.”

The first point, De Luisa emphasized, will serve to further boost the careers of young coaches such as Luis Pérez, Raúl Chabrand, Mónica Vergara, Maribel Domínguez and Ana Galindo, who currently work in the system of minor and women’s teams of the FMF. According to the agreement, these and other Mexican soccer personalities will be able to travel to Italy for training, while some Italians will come to Mexico for the same.

The directors mentioned that they have in mind the holding of matches between Mexican and Italian clubs, as well as between women’s and men’s national teams, but for now there is nothing concrete.

“In the meeting with the president of Serie A (Lorenzo Casini), one of the proposals will be that we can play a game soon (between a Mexican and an Italian club) and that it can be normalized over time, that it is not something fleeting. , but rather pursue a very complete objective so that there are exchanges between basic forces and that more clubs can enter in the future, ”concluded the president of Liga MX.

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