News: New World Cup Qualifying Format For CONCACAF

Discussion in 'USA Men: News & Analysis' started by Sebsasour, Jul 10, 2019.

  1. Sebsasour

    Sebsasour Member+

    New Mexico United
    May 26, 2012
    Albuquerque NM
    Club:
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    https://espndeportes.espn.com/futbo...el-formato-de-eliminatoria-rumbo-a-catar-2022

    If this is a true, The USMNT will no longer be taking part in the semi final rounds of qualifying and will now go directly to The Hex. The top 6 teams in The June 2020 FIFA rankings will directly qualify for The Hex, while the bottom 29 will participate in a different qualifying competition. Those 29 teams will be drawn into 8 groups with 3 groups having 3 teams and the other 5 having 4. The 8 group winners will play 2 legged playoffs against each other, until there is one team left.


    The top 3 teams in The Hex, will qualify for Qatar, while the 4th place team and the winner of the "other 29" will meet for a playoff to determine who gets CONCACAF's spot in the intercontinental playoff.
     
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  2. nowherenova

    nowherenova Member+

    Jul 20, 2003
    Formerly Terminus
    Using FIFA rankings as a measuring stick for WC qualifying is ridiculous.
     
  3. Reccossu

    Reccossu Member+

    Jan 31, 2005
    Birmingham
    This is crazy. FIFA rankings include friendlies. Too open for gamesmanship.
     
  4. alslammerz

    alslammerz Member

    Sep 3, 2007
    Staten Island, NY
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    First thing USSF should do is cancel any friendlies we have scheduled. As Wales and Switzerland proved, even wins are usually detrimental to your FIFA ranking.

    FWIW, as of today it would be: Mexico (18), USA (30), Costa Rica (39), Jamaica (54), Honduras (61), and El Salvador (69).

    On the bubble and having to play the qualifiers for the right to a playoff with the fourth placed team: Panama (75), Canada (78), Curacao (79), Trinidad and Tobago (92), and Haiti (101).
     
  5. Bclay

    Bclay Member

    May 29, 2012
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Club:
    Everton FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    This would be ridiculous and ripe for teams to game the system, but apparently the FIFA ranking system was updated after the World Cup last year. As far as I can tell, the new system eliminates the major issue where taking part in a friendly hurts your ranking whether you win or lose.

    The new system is listed on Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FIFA_World_Rankings#Current_calculation_method. It's complex enough that I can't easily tell if I like it. But it definitely seems like an improvement over the previous system which was terrible.

    With that in mind, this change might be OK... If the system does in fact work, then the rankings should be mostly accurate. And the most recent games that would affect the rankings would be the Nations League, which just puts added importance on those games. It definitely benefits the US as we no longer have to get through the semi-final round of qualifying. That round was always potentially problematic, as a single bad game could've eliminated us. More room for error in the Hex.
     
  6. CMeszt

    CMeszt Member+

    SUM Cabal Executive Director
    Jan 9, 2004
    3 blocks from "SoccerHouse", Chicago
    Club:
    Philadelphia Union
    #6 CMeszt, Jul 10, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2019
    This is known as the "F-ck You Canada".

    It's going to be extremely bizarre having a computer spit out the hex qualifiers rather than having it decided on the field in competitive matches.

    Seems nearly impossible for the USA to drop out that far, but teams 4-9 or so are all fairly close in quality.
     
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  7. ArsenalMetro

    ArsenalMetro Member+

    Arsenal
    United States
    Aug 5, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    Having this all based on FIFA rankings is ridiculous.

    This isn't ideal either, but we're about to have a Nations League. If you want to dish out automatic Hex berths, give 4 to the winners of the League A groups, and have the 4 second-placed teams drawn into home-and-away Hex playoffs, played at the same time as the Nations League final. That way, there's a concrete, easily-understood path to the Hex, not this amorphous nonsense.

    The whole 29-team playoff to get to a playoff to get to a playoff system is absurd on its face. It speaks volumes about the people running things at Concacaf that this suggestion wasn't laughed out of the room.
     
  8. CMeszt

    CMeszt Member+

    SUM Cabal Executive Director
    Jan 9, 2004
    3 blocks from "SoccerHouse", Chicago
    Club:
    Philadelphia Union
    I was thinking the same thing. Or at least something like winning a group guarantees you a playoff against the lowest ranked Hex qualifier for a spot as a compromise.

    Someone with math skills should be able to determine how much a team like Haiti is even capable of rising based on Nations League results.
     
  9. ChuckBlazersCat

    ChuckBlazersCat New Member

    Tottenham Hotspur, Celtic FC, FC St. Pauli, Chicago Fire
    United States
    Mar 25, 2019
    This is disgraceful and I'd even be surprised if FIFA signed off on it, given their inherent design of having to cater to smaller countries. If CONCACAF does this, what if UEFA decides to do the same and give Germany, England, France etc a virtual free pass to the WC? They could take the top 8 teams and then let the other 47 teams playoff for the right to face the top teams in two-legged, seeded playoffs (playing down to 8 more teams), followed by two repechage rounds for the 8 losers. Canada and Jamaica no less deserve a shot against the US in World Cup competition than the US deserves a shot at Brazil.

    I understand the desire to allow the US and Mexico to continue playing each other in qualification matches, but almost anything would be better than this.
     
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  10. CMeszt

    CMeszt Member+

    SUM Cabal Executive Director
    Jan 9, 2004
    3 blocks from "SoccerHouse", Chicago
    Club:
    Philadelphia Union
  11. dlokteff

    dlokteff Member+

    Jan 22, 2002
    San Francisco, CA
    So if you are teams 4-8, do you tank games so you can drop/stay in the minnow pool? Like what if Haiti or Curacao moves up to 6th based on their Gold Cup. Is that what they want or just stay down?

    Really bizzare system.
     
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  12. dlokteff

    dlokteff Member+

    Jan 22, 2002
    San Francisco, CA
    The Nations League is kinda why they have to do this in the 1st place since those games are taking the dates that otherwise would be used for the early qualifying rounds,

    Doing what you say there makes total sense and would actually put pressure on teams like the US to care about the Nations League. Win Win for CONCACAF then, but they are idiots.
     
  13. ArsenalMetro

    ArsenalMetro Member+

    Arsenal
    United States
    Aug 5, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    No way, because it isn't really a "minnow pool."

    The second-tier competition right now (Gold Cup isn't yet reflected in the FIFA rankings) would include Panama, Canada, Curacao, T&T, Haiti, and Guatemala. I'd much rather take my chances of nicking results against the US, Costa Rica, etc. versus beating all of those teams for a chance to go to a playoff v. Jamaica, then a playoff v. potentially Uruguay or someone similar.
     
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  14. Peretz48

    Peretz48 Member+

    Nov 9, 2003
    Los Angeles
    I'm having trouble wrapping my head around this. Beyond the absurdity of FIFA rankings to determine which competition you enter there's also the notion that if you're not in the top six ranked teams, and thus in the hexagonal which will determine the three qualifiers for Qatar, the best you can hope for is the .5 slot. And there it's playoff against the hexagonal 4th place team with the winner then playing in the intercontinental playoff to determine one team to Qatar. Were the guys who devised this sitting around with bongs?

    So if a team like Haiti, which showed well in the Gold Cup, continues to develop but still can't reach a high enough FIFA ranking, they're consigned to the 2nd pool, and the best they can hope for is getting the .5 slot. Same for other decent teams that don't make the top six (Canada? Panama?) Fukc CONCACAF, fukc the USSF, fukc FIFA, fukc all these mucky mucks.
     
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  15. QuakeAttack

    QuakeAttack Member+

    Apr 10, 2002
    California - Bay Area
    Club:
    San Jose Earthquakes
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Yawn. I have become very jaded with FIFA after the last two WC being rewarded to Russia and Qatar. I'm not going to get too excited one way or another with decisions made by CONCACAF or FIFA.
     
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  16. bsky22

    bsky22 Member+

    Dec 8, 2003
    Sucks for countries not in the top 6 of the FIFA rankings, but dont really care.

    What I care about is that we have wasted the last year and a half and now only have 14 months to prepare for the Hex and then play the first six games in the next 3 months.
     
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  17. ArsenalMetro

    ArsenalMetro Member+

    Arsenal
    United States
    Aug 5, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    To be fair, if you were in this scenario before, you were eliminated from qualification almost two years before the actual tournament.

    The more that I think about it, the more I'm realizing that my primary objection is the use of FIFA rankings and the timing of the announcement. If Concacaf had come out before the Nations League qualifiers had started and said...

    "Hey, we're changing World Cup qualifying. The winners of the Nations League A groups go to the Hex; the group runners-up get to compete in a playoff with each other for the other 2 Hex spots; the rest of you get to play a lot more matches than you normally would in a system that culminates in a playoff v. Hex #4. Try to get to League A via qualifiers, it'll be helpful!"

    ...I don't think anyone would be all that bothered. Every team would look at that and think "ok, if we win our matches, steal a result again a big team or two, we can get to the Hex and have a great shot at the World Cup."

    But saying "eh ******** it, FIFA rankings determine the Hex" 11 months before the deadline is just so colossally stupid that I'm having a hard time imagining the conversations that led to the idea.
     
  18. Bclay

    Bclay Member

    May 29, 2012
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Club:
    Everton FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Rough calculation:

    Win vs Costa Rica (Home): +10.66 points
    Win vs Costa Rica (Away): +10.66 points
    Win vs Curacao (Home): +8.68 points
    Win vs Curacao (Away): +8.68 points
    Win vs United States (Semi-Final): +18.56 points
    Win vs Mexico (Final): +19.63 points

    For a total of 76.87 points. That'd bring their point total to 1295, only moving them from 11th to 10th in CONCACAF. If Curacao didn't manage to beat Costa Rica, they'd likely lose points so that'd allow Haiti to pass them as well, moving to 9th.

    Nations League group matches only have a multiplier of 15 though, compared to 10 for Friendlies. So some extra friendly wins between now and next year could help them out. Still, it seems like a virtual impossibility for Haiti to make it to the top 6 by June 2020.
     
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  19. USA-Zebuel

    USA-Zebuel Member+

    Mar 26, 2013
    Club:
    Colón de Santa Fe
    FYP
     
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  20. AutoPenalti

    AutoPenalti Am I famous yet?

    Sep 26, 2011
    Coconut Creek
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Hahaha, they used music from the Star Wars Rebels season finale trailer.


    Isn’t that nice of them.
     
  21. WheezingUSASupport

    Dortmund
    United States
    Aug 28, 2017
    This is messed up.

    It would make a little more sense if the top 3 FIFA ranked CONCACAF teams automatically qualified into the Hex, but even this is wrong.

    Now teams on the bubble have to be strategic about their friendlies, and can’t experiment their rosters because now every game counts.

    At the very least they should have made the decision a year ago or not do it at all.

    Here’s a better idea, only the top 3 Gold Cup teams qualify into the Hex automatically. Then the two Mexico players who skipped might have gone.
     
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  22. dlokteff

    dlokteff Member+

    Jan 22, 2002
    San Francisco, CA
    Yeah, your probably right. Might depend on who they play for the 1/2 spot. If it's New Zealand it might be a better path,
     
  23. Paul Calixte

    Paul Calixte Moderator
    Staff Member

    Orlando City SC
    Apr 30, 2009
    Miami, FL
    Club:
    Orlando City SC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    So Montagliani shivved his own country?

    ...damn, Warner would be proud :oops:

    (For those not in the know: Jack Warner looked the other way when the refs screwed Trinibago over in the 1974 WCQ tournament in Haiti in favor of the hosts. Then, of course, he oversold tickets to the fateful game against the US in '89.)
     
  24. AlbertCamus

    AlbertCamus Member+

    Colorado Rapids
    Sep 2, 2005
    Colorado, USA
    Club:
    Colorado Rapids
    They probably wanted to use TV revenue numbers
     
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  25. ArsenalMetro

    ArsenalMetro Member+

    Arsenal
    United States
    Aug 5, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Club:
    Arsenal FC
    Attendance figures and a revamped Giants Cup or GTFO
     
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