Creative Soccer Culture

Liga MX Club Monarcas Morelia Officially Moves To Mazatlan

Not since Wimbledon relocated to Milton Keynes has there been such a controversial move, but Liga MX side Morelia have now confirmed their switch to Mazatlan, with the Monarcas ownership formally asking the Mexican league to sanction the change.

It’s a situation that is not usual on these shores: a club uprooting and relocating to a completely new city. But that’s exactly what’s happening with Mexico’s Liga MX side Monarcas Morelia who have officially announced their move to Mazatlan. The Pacific Coast city, which boasts a brand new 25,000 capacity stadium, has long been rumoured as a destination for a team to move to, although fans in Morelia have protested in recent weeks, with that city now left without a football team. 

Those protests weren’t enough to deter TV Azteca and owner Ricardo Salinas Pliego, who announced the move in a letter which hyped the city of Mazatlan and barely mentioned the city of Morelia, which they are leaving. "[Morelia] has started the paperwork with the Mexican football federation and Liga MX to change the site to Mazatlan, Sinaloa," read a club statement. "For the first time in history, top flight football will come to Mazatlan, one of the most important ports in Latin America, with an innovative project that will look to impulse the untiring spirit of sinaloenses.

With a new stadium built in the city of Mazatlan and the governor of the state of Sinaloa saying that he was bringing football to town, rumours started stirring about who was going to be the team to move to the city. The rumours were strong that it was Puebla but it later proved to be Morelia. Liga MX president Enrique Bonilla has also previously praised the potential of Mazatlan, which is considered a vacation destination. "[The Mazatlan] stadium will have everything necessary so that fans not only can see football there, but other entertainment with high levels of security," Said Bonilla last month. "It will be nice if a Liga MX team or second division team sets up there.” Looks like you got your wish, Mr Bonilla.

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The new name of the team taking residence in Mazatlan has yet to be announced, although reports have surfaced indicating it will simply be Mazatlan FC. The club and players are expected to move to the Pacific Coast over the coming weeks.

It's not the first time Liga MX clubs have changed location though, with Necaxa moving to Aguascalientes and Atlante to Cancun. Both clubs were founded in Mexico City. A similar situation also played out with San Luis Potosi and although the club Real San Luis ended, they now have the Atletico San Luis. Early suggestions are that the old name for Monarcas, the “Ates de Morelia”, will return to start by playing in the new Liga de Balompie Mexicano.

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The Liga MX 2020 Clausura season was canceled on May 22, with suggestions indicating that the 2020 Apertura is penciled in to start on July 17.

Daniel Jones

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