Who was Juan José Leaño, businessman who gave the only star to the Tecos de la UAG

Foto: Twitter/@TVAztecaJalisco

Despite not having the same years of history as the big Mexican soccer clubs, the tecos from the Autonomous University of Guadalajara (UAG) broke into the sports scene in the last decade of the 20th century and the first of the 21st. In more than 50 years of history, his track record includes only one First Division title, obtained during the presidency of John Joseph Leano, a businessman from Guadalajara who passed away this Friday, January 21, and who also chaired the highest governing body of national football.

The Leaño family enjoys wide recognition among the lineages located in the capital of the state of Jalisco for the closeness they have had with football. Their close relationship was cemented by Juan Jose Leano Alvarez del Castillo, who came to occupy some of the most important positions in national football, as well as the presidency of the Tecos in one of its most important times.

His link with Mexican football began when he was part of the Tecolotes team of the Autonomous University of Guadalajara (UAG). In the club linked to said sports entity he held the position of president and was in charge of leading the sports project that gave him his only league title. At that time, the manager of the bench was Victor Manuel Vucetich, although to achieve crowning he used a vast campus.

Foto: Twitter/@Beto_Murrieta
Foto: Twitter/@Beto_Murrieta

With the slogan of catapulting his team to the elite of Mexican soccer, Juan José Leaño hired hierarchical players from all over the world. The effort was such that, for the season of 1993-94 men like Marcelo Gonçalves, Carlos Rizo, Duilio Davino, Jaime Ordiales, Guillermo Vazquez, Javier Hernandez, Jorge Gabrich, Edson Zwaricz, Claudio Morena and Osmar Donizete.

In that edition of the long tournament they culminated as superleaders, with 51 units, as well as 17 wins, the same number of draws and only four losses. 20 teams from all over the country competed in the format during the regular season. Finally, entered the league as the best ranked team and surpassed Morelia, America, as well as the Club Santos Laguna, against whom champions were proclaimed.

Due to the success of his team, Juan José Leaño was contacted to take the reins of the Mexican Soccer Federation (FMF). In that instance he remained from 1994 and until 1998. In addition, he collaborated with a couple of coaches of the Mexican National Team, that is, Miguel Mejía Barón and Manuel Lapuente, who achieved the conquest of a couple of Concacaf Gold Cups, as well as a third place in the Confederations Cup and in the Copa America.

Juan José Leaño directed the FMF during the qualifying cycle for the 1998 World Cup in France (Photo: Twitter/@vichernandezm)
Juan José Leaño directed the FMF during the qualifying cycle for the 1998 World Cup in France (Photo: Twitter/@vichernandezm)

The positions he held were merit enough for the German Football Federation (DFB, for its acronym in German) will give him the Golden Award for his outstanding career in the sports world. Horst R. Schmidt, who at that time served as treasurer of the institution, was the one who gave him the recognition. It is worth mentioning that the mime has been delivered to characters such as Julio Grondona, Ken Naganuma, Emmanuel Shafer and Leonard Johansson.

His legacy in national football was inherited by Alvaro, Eduardo and Juan Jose, their children. They have dedicated themselves to working in the football field from the business world, including they became the financial support of the Tecos for a few years, until his cousin Antonio Leaño decided to acquire the franchise. On the other hand, after the death of Jorge Vergara and the sports crisis in Chivas, various voices assured a supposed interest of the family to acquire the rojiblanco club.

The news about the death of Juan José Leaño shocked the world of sports. Entities such as Liga MX, Tecos, Chivas from Club Deportivo Guadalajara and personalities such as Emilio Maurer, David Medrano, Fernando Schwartz, Fernando Quirarte, David Faitelson, Enrique Alfaro and Pablo Lemus they mourned the loss.


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