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Liga MX

Liga MX boss Arriola: “Introducing the ‘repechaje’ was an error on our side”

The Liga MX president claimed that the wild-card ‘repechaje’ was introduced due to commercial and economic pressures.

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A detail of a Liga MX sign
Manuel VelasquezGetty Images

The repechaje (wild-card) round (where teams ending in fifth through to twelfth could still advance in the postseason via one off round robin games) returned in the Guardianes 2021 tournament which saw a return to Liga MX action as the Covid-19 pandemic continued. Twelve out of the 18 participating teams could advance with a team finishing close to the foot of the table potentially winning the title.

After the 31 January FMF summit, Liga MX president Mikel Arriola confirmed that as of the Apertura 2023 tournament this ‘repechaje’ system will be eliminated.

Speaking to ESPN he admitted that this system from a competitive perspective was an error but countered stating that the system was introduced to comply with commercial agreements with television stations during the pandemic and that it was felt that the format would be positively received by Liga MX fans.

He added that it was extended until last year as the impact of the pandemic was still being felt but confirmed that the current Clausura 2023 will be the last tournament in which we will see the top 12 clubs having the opportunity to compete in the postseason phase of the championship.