Football: With no physical matches, Mexican players compete online

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Apr 08 2020 08:37 PM

Media during a Liga MX match between Tigres UANL and Juarez FC at Universitario Stadium, Monterrey, Mexico, on March 14 played behind closed doors as the number of coronavirus cases grows worldwide. Daniel Becerril, Reuters

Mexico's main football league will launch an esports tournament on Friday with professional players as the global pandemic sees stadiums shut and physical play suspended.

The competition will be a "replica" of 2020's closing tournament, organized over 17 days with nine matches daily and culminating in a finale, the Liga MX said Tuesday.

"There will be general rankings with, in the end, eight teams qualified for the play-offs," said the Liga MX, who were forced to halt the season on the pitch at the end of the competition's 10th day to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Each of the 18 clubs will choose three players from their professional teams to participate in the virtual tournament, with each meeting seeing a one-on-one match.

The games will be played in two periods of six minutes, with a half-time of less than three minutes, and will be broadcast across the main Mexican TV channels.

Two championship days are scheduled for the week.

In the eventuality that physical play is able to resume, the two competitions will continue simultaneously.

In Europe -- where quarantine and isolation measures are more severe -- eFootball competitions are already being held, like the "Bundesliga Home Challenge" in Germany.

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