Earlier today, CONCACAF announced the route to the Men’s World Cup in Qatar.

Spoiler alert: We get to fight for a 1/2 spot.

At first, you might be wondering how Canada is fighting for a 1/2 spot. Is this when I should mention it’s a fight for a chance at 1/2 spot? Because it’s even slimmer than you may expect.

Current top-6. There’s a (small) chance this may change in advance of the Hex. Panama is in 7th place.

In CONCACAF’s announcement, there are 2 routes to Qatar. The top-6 ranked teams as of June 2020 in CONCACAF (current top-6 to the right) duke it out in the Hex (home & away), with the top 3 automatically qualifying for the competition.

Countries ranked 7-35 (we’re 8th) compete in a home & away round robin in one of 8 groups (5 groups of 4, 3 groups of 3), and then advance through a home & away competition bracket to determine a champion.

The champion of this bracket has won the privilege of competing against the 4th-place finisher in the Hex.

The winner of that match enters a playoff with a team from AFC/CONMEBOL/OFC (association to be determined by “random” draw) for a single World Cup berth that is shared between the federations.

If the Canadian Men’s National Team were to qualify for the playoff match against AFC/CONMEBOL/OFC, they will need to champion between 12-14 matches (depending on their group’s size). Considering our Men’s team isn’t used to more than a handful of matches in a (busy) year, that will be a significant challenge.

Hopefully, the CONCACAF Nations League, starting this fall, will push the CMNT to grow as a team in time to fight past the “minnows” on the Road to Qatar.

error: Content is protected !!