New CONCACAF World Cup qualification format revealed

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Photo: Jamaica will begin their quest for the Qatar FIFA World Cup 2022 final round qualification in June 2021. They along with Mexico, USA, Costa Rica and Honduras are already through to the final qualification round. 





The new Concacaf World Cup qualification format was revealed by the regional body on Monday, even as it was announced that five teams have already qualified for the final stage which will begin in June 2021.

Eight teams will vie for three and a half spots in the final round next year in a home and way format, where the top three teams advance automatically to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar while the fourth team will have one more chance through the playoffs.

The first round of the qualification will be played between teams ranked 6-35 according to the FIFA ranking from June 2020.

The 30 teams will be drawn into 6 groups of 5 with the top six teams in the round being seeded. Each country will play once against each team in their group, two at home and two away for a total of four games. These matches will be played during the FIFA match windows of October and November this year.

The six group winners will advance to the second round and face off in a direct elimination format during the FIFA match window of March 2021. Winner of Group A will play the Winner of Group F, Winner of Group B will play the of Winner Group E and the Winner of Group C will play the Winner of Group D.

After home and away games, the three winners on aggregate score will advance to the third and final round to play against the top five ranked teams, Mexico, USA, Costa Rica, Jamaica and Honduras.

The eight nations will play home and away starting on the FIFA match windows in June 2021, followed by the windows in September, October and November 2021 and January and March 2022.

At the conclusion of round robin play the top three teams will qualify directly to Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup, the fourth placed team will advance to the FIFA Intercontinental playoff scheduled for June 2022.