Mexico cancels soccer season because of coronavirus pandemic

MEXICO CITY – The Liga MX in Mexico canceled the rest of the spring season without becoming a champion for the first time, a decision caused by the new coronavirus pandemic.

Teams had played 10 of the 17 dates of the Clausura before ending the game on March 15. The league said in a statement on Friday that restrictions due to the health emergency made it impossible to continue without endangering people.

“It is indisputable that we live in an unprecedented situation in this country that requires the football industry in Mexico to act with absolute sensitivity and to respond in unison to the demands that have been made,” the statement said.

Some teams had started testing players for COVID-19 as a step toward resuming the season, likely in fanless stadiums. Twelve players from Santos Laguna in the northern city of Torreon tested positive this week.

Cruz Azul, looking for his first league title since 1997, finished with 22 points and a one-point lead over second place León, who joined Cruz Azul in qualifying for the next CONCACAF Champions League. Santos Laguna and América were next with 17 points each.

Jonathan Rodríguez was the best with nine goals.

The women’s professional season was also canceled.

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