Last week, several media outlets reported that Peter Holt, owner the San Antonio Spurs is a potential buyer of Liga MX club Queretaro FC, which are owned by Grupo Caliente who were ordered to sell the club. Could a purchase of Queretaro open up more possibilities for San Antonio FC?
The club is being sold due to a violent clash between fans in March of 2022. The brawl spun out of control and spilled onto the pitch leaving fans injured and multiple people running onto the pitch to escape the violence. Over 25 people were injured three critically. The current owners of Queretaro were banned for five years, 14 fans were arrested, the supporter group or “Barra” was banned for three years from attending any matches. The Mexican Federation also fined the club $70,000.
More details on brawl from AP: https://apnews.com/article/sports-soccer-mexico-violence-arrests-7de92191e66f5a2abe3d9eb5e17ac3cf
Along with Peter Holt, R.C Buford, CEO of SS&E was named as an interested party and part the potential group to buy Queretaro FC.
Spurs Sports and Entertainment (SS&E) also own USL club San Antonio FC. SS&E made it public that they want to expand their market into Austin and Mexico with the NBA’s San Antonio Spurs. SS&E intends for the Spurs to play two home games in Austin and Mexico City in the near future. A potential buy of Queretaro would add to those plans to expand SS&E’s market and reach.
San Antonio proximity to Mexico, its population, heritage and popularity of Liga MX make the Queretaro potential purchase enticing.
Possibilities for SAFC
What would it mean for San Antonio FC if the deal goes through? Would there be a direct link between Queretaro and San Antonio FC? One potential outcome would be that San Antonio FC would become a feeder club to Queretaro. It could open a direct path to pro in Liga MX for San Antonio FC academy players in the future. Also young Queretaro players could easily be loaned out to San Antonio FC to get playing time and experience in the USL. A partnership with Queretaro would broaden options for SAFC to succeed and develop players.
If the purchase goes through, we could see regular season Liga MX matches take place at Toyota Field. With the recent fan restrictions and supporter groups barred for three years, Queretaro FC would want to play in a stadium more fan friendly and with a festive atmosphere. It would be tricky to schedule SAFC and Queretaro matches during parts of the year and it would make busy work for the groundkeepers but it’s highly possible for Queretaro to host a number of “home matches” at Toyota Field. If Queretaro fans show interest and if more fans are created in the San Antonio region to watch Liga MX matches at Toyota Field, it could be the catalyst to expand and upgrade Toyota Field to its final plan of being an 18,000 seat stadium.
The current ownership of Queretaro have until the end of the year to sell the team, we will have to wait and see if Peter Holt and SS&E make the purchase. More to follow.