MIAMI, United States, Mar 29, CMC – Powerhouses Jamaica have paid the price for defeat in their final Nations League qualifying game and will now do battle in League B of the inaugural Championship starting in September.
Lost to El Salvador
The Reggae Boyz, the highest-ranked Caribbean team in the FIFA rankings at 54th, crashed to a 2-0 defeat away to El Salvador at the Estadio Cuscatlan in San Salvador, to finish the qualifying round in eighth spot on nine points.
Only the six top teams from qualifying advanced to the top tier League A featuring the likes of heavyweights Mexico, United States and Costa Rica.
16 teams in League B
League B comprises the 16 teams which qualified seventh to 22nd and sees Jamaica installed in Group C alongside Antigua and Barbuda, Guyana and Aruba.
Jamaica, however, can find themselves in the top tier for the next championship, with the four group winners in League B gaining promotion to League A.
Guyana, who finished seventh in qualifying to reach the prestigious CONCACAF Gold Cup for the first time in their history, will now also fancy their chances of gaining promotion.
Bermuda make surprising move to League A
League A, meanwhile, will see surprise side Bermuda clashing with Mexico and Panama in Group B, after the Bermudians beat the Dominican Republic, 3-1, last weekend to reach the Gold Cup and finish fifth in the standings.
Haiti, who topped the standings with four wins, have been pitted against Costa Rica and Curacao, who finished fourth in qualifying on nine points.
Trinidad and Tobago, the second highest ranked Caribbean side in the FIFA rankings at 93rd, clash with Honduras and Martinique. The Trinidadians avoided the qualifying phase of the Nations League by virtue of reaching the final round of CONCACAF qualifiers for last year’s World Cup in Russia and were also automatic qualifiers for the Gold Cup.
The four group winners from League A will do battle in the playoffs scheduled for March next year and which will determine the champions, while the last placed teams in each group will suffer relegation to League B.
Meanwhile, League C will feature 13 teams competing in the four groups, with the group winners elevated to League B.
Following are the group assignments for the 2018-19 Nations League.
Group A: United States, Canada and Cuba
Group B: Mexico, Panama and Bermuda
Group C: Honduras, Trinidad and Tobago and Martinique
Group D: Costa Rica, Haiti and Curacao
Group A: French Guiana, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Belize and Grenada
Group B: El Salvador, Dominican Republic, Saint Lucia and Montserrat
Group C: Jamaica, Guyana, Antigua and Barbuda and Aruba
Group D: Nicaragua, Suriname, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and Dominica
Group A: Barbados, Cayman Islands, Saint Martin and U.S. Virgin Islands
Group B: Bonaire, Bahamas and British Virgin Islands
Group C: Guatemala, Puerto Rico and Anguilla
Group D: Guadeloupe, Turks and Caicos and Sint Maarten