Twenty-two people were injured, two critically, and there were reports of dead fans during violent clashes at a soccer game in Querétaro, Mexico after supporters of opposing sides attacked each other in the stands and on the field on Saturday.
David Medrano Felix of TV Azteca reported that 17 people died at the match between Liga MX reigning champion Atlas and Querétaro at Corregidora Stadium. The game was called off a little more than an hour after kickoff.
Many fans ran onto the field in the riot, according to news reports and videos. Men were shown dragging people across the concrete outside the stadium, kicking and beating them and ripping off their clothes. Another video showed a topless man being beaten and whipped.
“I strongly condemn today’s violence at the Corregidora Stadium,” Querétaro state governor Mauricio Kuri said on Twitter. “I have given instructions to apply the law with all its consequences.”
In a statement issued on Sunday, Concacaf, the region’s governing body, deplored and condemned the acts of violence.
“The shocking acts of vandalism and violence that occurred last night in Queretaro, Mexico, have no place in football or society,” the statement said. “The thoughts of everyone at Concacaf are with the victims of these awful events, and their families.
“Concacaf wholly condemns these types of behaviors. We call on the local authorities to fully investigate these criminal acts, and to hold accountable those who have tarnished our game.
“The confederation also believes that strong football sanctions must be applied and will provide any necessary support to the FMF and Liga MX as they investigate.”
In a statement issued later on Sunday, FIFA said it was abhorred by the incident.
“FIFA is shocked at the tragic incident that took place at La Corregidora stadium in the city of Queretaro during the fixture between Queretaro and Atlas,” the statement said. The violence at the La Corregidora stadium was unacceptable and intolerable.
“FIFA joins the Mexican Football Association and Concacaf in condemning this barbaric incident and encouraging the local authorities to bring swift justice to those responsible. Our thoughts are with all those who suffered its consequences.
“Once again FIFA would like to stress that violence should have absolutely no place in football and we will continue working with all parties to eradicate it from our game.”
Atlas led 1-0 when fighting started in the stadium. It spread onto the field and the area around the stadium.
In a statement, Liga MX said that it started “an in-depth investigation into what happened in the stands, on the pitch and outside the building during the match.”
Liga MX executive president Mikel Arriola said all Sunday matches were suspended.
The Mexican Football Federation’s disciplinary commission announced that it had also opened an investigation.