CONCACAF welcomes the decisions made by FIFA regarding the men’s and women’s international match calendars. Many of our Member Associations and their communities continue to face significant challenges due to COVID-19 and our thoughts are with them at this difficult time.
The rescheduling of competitions, and agreements on new international match dates, provide some encouragement across the football world and enable CONCACAF to progress our planning to resume men’s and women’s international football when it is safe to do so.
At the FIFA Council meeting an update was provided on the extensive work carried out by a FIFA working group, which includes CONCACAF representatives, on the international women’s calendar. Following the confirmation of new dates for several competitions, including the Under 20 and Under 17 FIFA Women’s World Cups, CONCACAF and all Confederations committed to continue prioritizing the reorganization of the calendar for match dates in 2021 and 2022.
Regarding the men’s international calendar, FIFA has made the decision to postpone the September 2020 FIFA window for CONCACAF, the AFC, CAF and the OFC. This means our qualifying process for the 2022 FIFA World Cup – Qatar will not begin in September, as previously scheduled.
The challenges presented by postponements to the football calendar, and the incomplete FIFA rankings cycle in our confederation, means our current World Cup Qualifying process has been compromised and will be changed. We will now work with the new framework provided and liaise with FIFA to finalize a new World Cup Qualification format for the CONCACAF region.
We will also work with our stakeholders to reorganize the CONCACAF Road to Gold Cup Qualifiers (originally scheduled for March and June 2020), the CONCACAF Nations League Finals (originally scheduled for June 2020) and a range of other suspended competitions.
A further update on World Cup Qualifying and other CONCACAF men’s international competitions will be provided in the coming weeks. We will also continue to work with FIFA and the other Confederations on the international match calendar process for women’s football to ensure we are well placed to support the return of the international women’s game as soon as possible.