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Discussion in 'FIFA and Tournaments' started by shizzle787, Dec 4, 2015.
Are African teams now fielding players of correct age at the Youth WCs?
At the U17 with scientific certainty - yes. At U20 mostly also because a lot of the U20 players are promoted wholesale. Also in bigger countries the youth system is full of soccer schools so these players don't come out of nowhere. So teams like Nigeria or Ghana don't really have much room for fielding overage players anymore. You can even see the change - earlier youth teams were built from club players. Now they feature almost exclusively players from soccer academies.
The thing is its very hard to justify 4 spots for CONCACAF. Here are the 4 teams that qualify for CONCACAF every two years: Mexico, US or Costa Rica, and 2 teams that get totally destroyed! And actually US doesn’t do well at this level either.
Yes, I know it’s a youth tournament and the under-20 world cup can be seen as a tool to help grow the game in all parts of the world blah blah blah. But eastern Europe and central Asia (who have teams competing in UEFA) shouldn’t be excluded from those “parts”.
For under 17's, the MRI scan has proved highly efficient in detecting over aged players, which up to now days, still keep on appearing many cases in african football, but once proved positive they aren't allowed to participate in the youth WC.
For under 20's though, despite what @zahzah says regarding to from where most players come from, there is no efficient method in detecting over aged players, so most authorities or officials, must rely mostly on previous existent data regarding players, so when/where there is no pre-existent data, they can continue cheating their way through.
It's not for nothing, but for instance with Nigeria, last year or more preciselly for August -2016, 26 out of 60, of their players tested positive on MRI scans on their match vs. Niger under-17, for an Afcon U-17 qualifier, which was basicly almost half of their whole possible roster (where most were their first team).
And if this happens with u-17 players, where there is a highly efficient method of screening out over aged players, it's not hard to imagine what happens at the u-20 level, where there is no efficient method in screening out the cheaters.
But, what do we care for ?, the WC is for senior players, so if they cheated at younger levels, the only way it will affect them at senior level, is that lots of african players will continue getting retired with suposedly less than 30 years of age..... (For the case, it's their clubs the ones whom should be more worried, as they are the ones paying them)
I guess the solution is to have African teams only field players at the U-20 who have been confirmed of correct age three years earlier for the U-17.
@zahzah once again painting a rosy inaccurate picture
Problem is, that not all players get MRI screening tests when being u-17 (in fact, only a small proportion of them really do), so most players don't have this data to back them up with, when playing at u-20 level, afterwards.
Besides, when someone wants to cheat the system, all you need is a corrupt official whom will switch the results of past tests performed with new ones (even from diferent individuals to the player to whom they are suposed to be).
I agree and it seems like everyone around here seems to just ignore this.
This is a reason why I believe expansion will be a success. African teams can help fill out a 48 team tournament with entertaining teams that are not that bad (that would have been left out of a 32 team tournament.).
Im be I g
It's not rosy. It's realistic. MRI has eliminated most of the cheating. If it happens it occurs with U 20 players.
If anyone is exaggerating its you. By painting or suggesting a negative picture that has no basis in reality. Most young players from the top African nations have pics and documented history at youth level.
MRI scans hasn't eliminated the problem, as even up to now days it still exists equally as rampant as it was before.
The only thing that the MRI scans has solved, is that many of the cheaters are discovered before being able to take part in u-17 WC's.
From the u-20 level, as there is no method existent to give any assurance of "real" ages of players, these cheats continue happening, as always.
Well there is lots of media, coming directly from Africa, which suggests the contrary :
There are lots other pages as well (I will not post them all here, so if you want to read more just google "age cheating in african football", and there will be lots of pages adressing the problem)
CAF is an exception to the rule because a) there are many big countries in Africa, and b) the current qualification format lends itself to more random outcomes. So, yeah, more spots for CAF will make it likely that the best CAF teams qualify. I'm not expecting the 6th and 7th CAF teams to do any worse in the World Cup than the 5 that are qualifying now.
Those 2 factors don't apply for CONCACAF and AFC though (and OFC too of course). The current qualifying format generally identifies the best teams. IOW the additional teams will almost certainly be worse than the weakest teams that qualify through those confederations now.
I would argue significantly weaker too. Just looking at the last 3 HEX's shows a clear and steep drop when you go from the 4th-best team to the 6th best.
I only asked a question, and my comment was based on @Rickdog 's reply. Plus you do have a history of embellishment, by the way.
Panama are decent, and the talent they have coming up suggests that they'll be fine in the post-Pérez, Tejada & Baloy era. I wouldn't read too much into their Copa América performance: they got crushed by two of the best national teams in the world and won their other game.
...after that, 100% in agreement.
Hey, btw, you think age cheating in Africa is restricted to young players ?
take a look at the next piece, I recently found googling over the issue :
I have concerns about the expanded World Cup but I am glad they'll be more African teams. This time Cameroon and Nigeria are in the same qualifying group; and only the winner qualifies.
Id you read the articles you quoted most are in past tense. It was a problem, it is less so. It is not equally rampant.
Even if you check U20 competitions African countries mostly promote youth players and are less likely to play players that failed MRI. That said there was a high profile case of a US born Nigerian that failed an MRI test, was dropped by Nigeria and ended up playing for the US national team...
Countries like Nigeria now use MRI from youth levels plus European clubs prefer to purchase players from reputable youth academies like Right To Dream. European clubs are wary of Africans that don't have documented history.
Also I would note that the MRI scan is a bit unfair and not all players that fail it are cheaters as a significant percentage of players will fail the rest but actually be of the correct age (like the said American born player)
As for media there is a lot of false stories also on African sites that propagate a false reality in modern African football. For example a lot of articles about Iheanacho being older (which is naturally ridiculous given his MRI history) because his man city teammates call him 'uncle Kelechi'.
mmm, with less than one year ago, it is quite recent.
Anyhow, if you want newer ones you just have to use the google tools and have your searches restricted to the time period you want.
For example this one is from only 4 days ago :
MRI screening tests don't apply to u-20 players.
And of course, if those players failed the tests (if they had them), when they were suposedly u-17 players, their credibility will be highly affected at older levels, giving place to suspicion (specially to opponents whom may be aware of their cases).
They use MRI screening not because they want to.
It is mandatory now, that they do it (if it wouldn't be mandatory, they wouldn't be doing them).
Yeah, and also lots of european clubs have learned the hard way (losing lots of money hiring suposedly younger players, to find out later that they are lots more older than what they believed they were), that the age cheating practice is a very common issue among african nations.
It is not unfair at all.
All players round the world, with no exceptions, at the u-17 level must have them, if they want to play at the u-17 WC.
The test is 99 % effective in screening out older players (which also means that only 1 % among those tested, fail the test, not necessarily being cheaters). 1 out of 100, is not preciselly a significant percentage of those whom fail the test.
Unfortunately, african players with their scandalous age cheating atitude through time, have made a very bad fame on themselves, and so, most of them must suffer the consequences of that fame. And among those whom most cheated over it, which in many cases they have recognized it (specially Nigeria and Ghana), suspicions will always exist. The only way to revert this, is to start getting positive fame, and of course not having new cases among their ranks, as with each new case, their negative fame as cheaters returns back to from where they started from.
Folks, surely there is a more appropriate thread for the MRI scan debate?
UEFA wants 16 spots for the World Cup 2026.
Uefa Qs will basicly remain untouched if it's 16 berths ... like the EUROs used to be (before expansion made a mess of it) ... also, maintaining the principle of geographic separation during the final draw isn't much of a "demand" ... inter-confederational matches are relatively rare (roughly 80% are intra-confederational affairs) ... actually Infantino, Mr. Inclusivity, should be demanding that Uefa teams are evenly distributed between the 16 three-team groups instead of Ceferin ... Conmebol teams will most likely be in one pot as well.
Elo, Fifa/fizzy drink, Transfermarkt, the betting industry, etc. point out the same thing ... so do the performances at the World Cup ... Conmebol and Uefa were already under-represented in a 32 team cup competition where you expect the world's best to face each other ... in a 48 team "social event" (Infantino) the standards will drop much lower ... there will be a major discrepancy between teams that "qualify" and Fifa/fizzy drink's top 48 ranked NTs ... why should Fifa then push to use their ranking (possibly as a tie-breaker even), when they themselves ignore it ... with a greed-based allocation their ranking could as well be purely academic
Starting to resemble the FIFI Wild Cup ... including the groups of 3 nonsense
I suspect it'll be tweaked a bit to involve the Nations League. But it works out well since UEFA are moving to a 10-group qualifying process beginning in 2020. So 10 group winners + 5 playoff winners + NL league 'A' playoff winner. That'll be nicer than having the 'worst' second-place team eliminated directly which is quite harsh.
UEFA and CAF qualifiers will be slightly improved with expansion, while the other 3 confederations' qualifiers will be significantly more dull.
CONCACAF is considering a change to it's qualifying procedure. The Hex obviously wont work. However it is changed, the new format should be easier for the US and Mexico to qualify, but it currently isn't that hard for these 2 nations. Although, the new format will be more interesting for teams ranked 5 - 10 in CONCACAF. 3 more teams can potentially make it to the WC, so qualifying will be bring more interest from these countries, because they will have a chance to make it now.
The main problem (and Montagliani has acknowledged as much) is that the US and Mexico still want to play each other in WCQ...and I can't see how that happens in a final round with multiple groups, unless you have a ranking situation like right now with Costa Rica in the top two and the US and Mexico just happen to get drawn into the same group.
The Argentine Primera first division has a solution to that. Not a very good one, but a solution nonetheless. Play everyone in your own group twice and play your main rivals in the other group twice as well. So if you had, say, two groups of 5 it would mean playing 8 games within your group plus another 2 against the other group.
CONCACAF said they want to reformat the entire system... so who knows what they will do. I posted something simialr to this potential qualifying format in another thread.
Top 2 CONCACAF teams get a bye to round 2
Round 1. Bottom 33 teams play. 11 Groups of 3. First place team from each group advances.
Round 1.5. Bottom 2 winners from round 1 have a home and away playoff to eliminate 1 team to even out the numbers.
Round 2. 10 teams from R1 and R1.5 plus reaming 2 teams participate in a 12 Team CONMEBOL style playoff.
This will be a total of 26 games for the 11 Round 1 teams that make the 2nd round. 1 team will play 28 games. Bye teams will play 22 games.
All teams get at least 4 WCQ games per cycle (instead of 1 or 2 now). In this format Mexico, US and CR should play each other in the final round.
A 35 team confed is not ideal... but if they get creative they could make it work.
Also there are rumors of the Carribean making their own Confed.
So it could be like this:
CFU with 15 teams and 2 to 3 WC spots (They would have to figure out WCQ with the odd number teams)
CONCACAF with 10 teams and 3 to 4 WC spots (Perfect CONMEBOL style WCQ)
This could work too...
Top 5 have a bye to Round 2
R1: 5 groups of 6, first, second and 3rd place teams advance.
15 advancing teams plus the 5 bye teams go to R2.
R2: 4 groups of 5 (all teams play 1 out of group rival for 10 total games) Top 4 advance to WC.
R3: 1 group of 4. The 4 second place teams play to determine the last 2 or 2.5 spots.
All teams get at least 10 games every cycle.
R1 teams play 20 total games or 26 if they have to go to R3
Bye teams play 10 total games or 16 if they have to go to R3