Home Global Game CONCACAF CSA president says Canadians should focus on qualifying for Copa America, not bellyaching over the process

CSA president says Canadians should focus on qualifying for Copa America, not bellyaching over the process


On Thursday morning, CONMEBOL and CONCACAF made it official. The Copa America will be pan-American tournament in 2016.

There were shouts of joy, as the lucrative American and Mexican television markets will be ensured marquee match-ups between the two CONCACAF powers and the big boys from South America. Of course, the Americans and Mexicans would get two automatic qualifying spots for Copa America. It makes good business and sporting sense.

But, when it come to the remaining CONCACAF slots in the Copa America… it doesn’t seem very equitable to Canada.

The winners of the CentroAmerica tourney (which, by nature of geography, Canada doesn’t participate in) and the winner of the Caribbean championship (which, by nature of geography, Canada doesn’t participate in) each get spots in the Copa America.

That leaves two spots, which will be determined in a playoff of top teams from the 2015 Gold Cup.

See, outside of Mexico, the U.S. and Canada, every CONCACAF nation is either in a) the Caribbean or b) Central America. Those nations have two avenues to qualification: Through their regional tournaments or through the Gold Cup playoff. Canada has only the Gold Cup process. So, because Canada has the misfortune of being part of the North American landmass, sharing it with the big boys from the United States and Mexico, we are locked out of the process.

But Canadian Soccer Association President Victor Montagliani said that we need to be focused on taking one of the spots that are available to us, and shouldn’t bellyache about the process.

“You can look at it that way, that the process is unfair, but that’s not how I look at it,” Montagliani said. “I think that the days of excuses are over. For us, we have the ability to qualify for a spot, and we have to play for it. They have given us an opportunity to play for that spot. It’s a well-balanced approach.”

Basically, in Montagliani’s mind, it’s time for us to put up and shut up, and not worry about the conspiracy theories that come part and parcel with being a CONCACAF member.

When the announcement was made today, former players from the U.S., Trinidad and Tobago, Mexico and Jamaica were on hand in Miami. No Canadian was on the stage. (Maybe none of the Canadian players from the 2000 Gold Cup winning team were available.)

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  1. Scottish Teeth

    May 8, 2014 at 5:08 pm

    How is this going to work then? CONCACAF will automatically award four spots, 1) Mexico, 2) US, 3) Caribbean champion, 4) CentroAmerican champion. Does that mean there will be a qualifying tournament for everyone else? Will the four automatic qualifiers participate in what will be a meaningless tournament for them?

    This is not unfair to Canada. We do not deserve a dual route to qualify because we have not earned one. Let’s be candid. There is no way places like Costa Rica or Martinique should be a challenge to us, let alone defeating us on a regular basis. Until the day comes where we can breeze through the qualifier with only our reserve squad, we have no right to complain.


    • Kahkakew Yawassanay

      July 22, 2014 at 9:04 pm

      Look at their past head to head records and both teams have beaten your immigrant Canada MNT…118th in the world rankings does not get anyone a free ride and like the CSA top man said..put up or shut up and that starts with investors like the Faths putting out the funds to develop USL Pro and NASL clubs along with academies….and even with that being said they will fall behind the rest of CONCACAF where the beautiful game is part of their way of life and not just the latest fad


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