Chivas, San Luis Withdraw From Copa Libertadores

After Sao Paulo and Nacional refused to travel to Mexico, Chivas and San Luis pulled out of Copa Libertadores.
After Sao Paulo and Nacional refused to travel to Mexico for Copa Libertadores matches, the Mexican Football Federation announced that its clubs would no longer participate in the tournament.

Chivas and San Luis withdrew from the 2009 Copa Libertadores effective immediately after their South American counterparts declined to travel due to concerns about the H1N1 flu.

"We cannot go and play where there is no respect for the rules," FMF President Justino Compean said. "We cannot participate in this tournament because to have a one-off series where we are the visitors would not constitute fair play. There is no fairness. There is no advantage for us and because of that, we leave."

Sao Paulo and Nacional joined Chile and Colombia in slamming doors in Mexico's face. CONMEBOL first set it up for Chivas and San Luis to play their home legs in Bogota but the Colombian government squashed any such plans. Then, Chile took the same action. In fact, only second-division Ecuadorian side Aucas said they would be prepared to welcome the Mexican clubs.

Thus, Mexico and San Luis will not have the opportunity to try and become the first Mexican club to win a Copa Libertadores tournament.

FMF officials did not place any of the blame on their counterparts at CONMEBOL.

"We are thankful of their work because they put a lot into everything," FMF General Secretary Decio De Maria said. "They worked thoroughly, were very punctual and put in a lot of time. They also postponed the games for a week, something that had both sporting and economical side effects."

Ultimately, the two clubs in question were the reason why Chivas and San Luis pulled out.

"Unfortunately the decisions taken by Sao Paulo and Nacional along with the respective authorities made it impossible to find a solution within the competition's rules," Sao For that reason, we are stepping aside."

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