FIFA charges Ecuador over fan chants at World Cup opener
The “discriminatory” chants were allegedly aimed at Ecuador's South American rivals Chile
November 23, 2022 6:43pm
Updated: November 23, 2022 6:43pm
FIFA opened its first disciplinary case of the 2022 World Cup on Tuesday over allegedly discriminatory chants sung by Ecuador fans at the tournament’s opening game.
FIFA said the charge was “due to the chants” sung during the game between Ecuador and host country Qatar on Sunday, which the South American country won 2-0.
The “discriminatory” chants were allegedly aimed at Ecuador's South American rivals Chile after the country started a legal case before the World Cup to attempt to take Ecuador’s place at the tournament.
Chile claimed that Ecuador had been using an ineligible player, Byron Castillo, who is of Chilean origin. However, Chile claimed to have documents to prove that the player could play for them, leading Chile to lose the appeal.
Additionally, Mexico was also charged by FIFA’s disciplinary committee for alleged chants during Mexico’s 0-0 draw against Poland on Tuesday.
The chants potentially break article 13 of FIFA’s disciplinary code, which deals with discrimination. Potential sanctions for the teams charged include playing a game behind closed doors or being banned from venues, according to the BBC.
Ecuador will face the Netherlands at Khalifa International Stadium on Friday.