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Mexico federation won't punish players after late-night party

The Mexico Football Federation will not punish players who took part in a late-night party before the national team flew to Europe ahead of the World Cup.

Mexican tabloid magazine TV Notas published photos of at least eight players partying in Mexico City after Saturday's friendly victory over Scotland.

The photos became a major story in Mexico on Tuesday as the team arrived in Copenhagen, Denmark, to train ahead of the World Cup.

But Guillermo Cantu, general secretary of the Mexican football federation, told reporters in Cancun that the federation would not be imposing any fines or taking any disciplinary action against those involved.

"The day was a free day," Cantu said. "That's the risk you take with [giving] freedom. In truth, it's not whether we like [what the players may have done] or not, simply that we have to be clear that they haven't missed any training or a meet-up."

Cantu also said it was not up to him to judge the players on their behavior when they are not with El Tri.

"The subject of values is separate. I'm not going to condemn the players. It's a personal and free decision of how they can use their [free] time, which was agreed upon a week before the journey [to Denmark]," Cantu said. "The topic of freedom is complex."

ESPN's John Sutcliffe reported that captain Rafa Marquez spoke with the players in the team hotel in Copenhagen ahead of training on Tuesday to remind them of their responsibilities ahead of Russia 2018, indicating that the event had damaged the group's image.

It's not the first time this kind of distraction has occurred in the history of the Mexico national team.

In September 2010, Efrain Juarez and Carlos Vela were suspended for their part in allegedly organizing a party in a Monterrey hotel, with 11 other players fined.

In June 2011, eight Mexico players were banned from the Copa America after getting caught bringing women back to the team hotel.

ESPN FC writer Tom Marshall contributed to this story.

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