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Football Reporting


Liga MX president Arriola wants to improve relationship with MLS

Liga MX is looking to consolidate its internationalization in the near future and will be seeking to both strengthen its relationship with MLS and CONMEBOL, following a change of president.

Former politician Mikel Arriola was confirmed on Monday as the league’s new executive president, while previous president Enrique Bonilla will head up a new department focused on the international expansion of Liga MX.

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Part of Bonilla’s new role will be to oversee the strategic partnership with MLS, which was formalized in 2018.

This year was set to see an expanded Leagues Cup tournament involving eight teams from each league, as well as an All-Star Game and the Campeones Cup, but all that was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Bonilla stressed he is in regular contact with MLS commissioner Don Garber and that communication remains on course, with “a league that is combined in some way the ultimate goal,” said Gaber in 2019.

“The relationship with Don Garber is very tight, we are in constant contact,” said Bonilla in a video conference on Tuesday. “We are working if not quickly then with firm steps to look for the best for both Liga MX, MLS and the development of football in North America.”

But Bonilla added that Liga MX would look to talk to South America’s CONMEBOL to discuss a possible return to club competitions such as the Copa Libertadores and Copa Sudamericana, which Mexican teams featured in from 1998 until 2016.

“We have to finalize the projects we have, including accelerating talks with [president] Alejandro Dominguez in CONMEBOL, so our teams can begin to compete in those tournaments, as well as consolidating the alliance with MLS,” explained Bonilla.

The calendar for Mexican teams may become especially tight with CONCACAF president Victor Montagliani confirming this year that the CONCACAF Champions League could be expanded.

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