CONCACAF confirms World Cup qualifying format will change

AFP
Football's governing body for North and Central America and the Caribbean confirms that disruptions caused by the coronvirus pandemic mean qualifying for the 2022 World Cup will be delayed and will require a revised format (AFP Photo/--)
Football's governing body for North and Central America and the Caribbean confirms that disruptions caused by the coronvirus pandemic mean qualifying for the 2022 World Cup will be delayed and will require a revised format (AFP Photo/--)

Miami (AFP) - Football's governing body for North and Central America and the Caribbean confirmed Thursday that 2022 World Cup qualifying will be delayed after FIFA announced changes to the men's international calendar.

The FIFA Council announced Thursday that amid ongoing coronavirus concerns the world governing body was postponing the September international match window for North and Central America, Asia, Africa and Oceania.

International matches will go on for South America and Europe, subject to continued monitoring of the COVID-19 situation, FIFA said.

"This means our qualifying process for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 will not begin in September, as previously scheduled," CONCACAF confirmed -- something that had already been widely expected.

"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," CONCACAF added in a statement. "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."

CONCACAF chief Victor Montagliani had said in May that he expected the confederation's traditional "Hexagonal" final round of World Cup qualifying to be scrapped as qualifying for the 2022 World Cup was modified because of the disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

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