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Gold Cup – USA 2009 – Qualifying

CONCACAF Gold Cup 2009 Qualification Tournament

The qualifying tournament for the 2009 CONCACAF Gold Cup was split into two regional sections: Caribbean and Central American. Of the 40 CONCACAF member nations, nine withdrew leaving 28 teams to compete for 9 places in the finals alongside the 3 pre-qualified teams (Canada, Mexico and the USA). The Caribbean section was played over three group stages followed by semi finals and a final and ran from July to December 2008. The Central America section involved one group phase followed by a knockout competition and took place in early 2009. Full details can be found below along with our team by team round up.

Caribbean Zone (Digicel Caribbean Championship 2008)

The Caribbean Football Union (CFU) organised the Gold Cup qualification tournament on behalf of their 30 members. The region was awarded four places in the finals. Nine teams (Bahamas, Dominican Republic, French Guiana, Montserrat, Puerto Rico, Sint Maarten, Turks & Caicos Islands, U.S. Virgin Islands and Saint Lucia) withdrew, leaving 21 teams to contest the four qualification berths. The tournament doubled up as the 2008 Digicel Caribbean Championship (the latest incarnation of the Caribbean Cup).

First Group Stage

The sixteen lowest ranked teams were placed into five groups. They played the other group members once each at a single venue. The five group winners and four best runners-up progressed to the second group stage. Playing at home was evidently a valuable advantage as all five hosts made it into the next stage.

Group A P W D L F A Pts
Netherlands Antilles 2 1 1 0 2 0 4
Grenada 2 1 0 1 3 3 3
Aruba 2 0 1 1 1 3 1

Group A Results:
(All matches in Stadion Ergilio Hato, Willemstad, Curacao, Netherlands Antilles)
27-07-2008 Netherlands Antilles 0-0 Aruba
29-07-2008 Grenada 3-1 Aruba
31-07-2008 Netherlands Antilles 2-0 Grenada

Group B P W D L F A Pts
Guyana 2 1 1 0 4 1 4
Surinam 2 1 1 0 4 2 4
Dominica 2 0 0 2 1 6 0

Group B Results:
(All matches in National Stadium, Providence, Georgetown, Guyana)
08-08-2008 Guyana 3-0 Dominica
09-08-2008 Surinam 3-1 Dominica
10-08-2008 Guyana 1-1 Surinam

Group C P W D L F A Pts
Antigua & Barbuda 3 2 1 0 8 3 7
Cayman Islands 3 1 2 0 3 1 5
Bermuda 3 1 1 1 7 4 4
Saint-Martin 3 0 0 3 2 13 0

Group C Results:
(All matches in Truman Bodden Stadium, George Town, Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands)
27-08-2008 Bermuda 0-4 Antigua & Barbuda
27-08-2008 Cayman Islands 3-0 Saint-Martin
30-08-2008 Saint Martin 0-7 Bermuda
30-08-2008 Cayman Islands 1-1 Antigua & Barbuda
31-08-2008 Antigua & Barbuda 3-2 Saint-Martin
31-08-2008 Cayman Islands 2-0 Bermuda

Group D P W D L F A Pts
Barbados 2 2 0 0 5 2 6
St. Kitts & Nevis 2 1 0 1 5 3 3
British Virgin Islands 2 0 0 2 1 6 0

Group D Results:
(All matches in Warner Park, Basseterre, Saint Kitts)
24-09-2008 St. Kitts & Nevis 4-0 British Virgin Islands
26-09-2008 British Virgin Islands 1-2 Barbados
28-09-2008 St. Kitts & Nevis 1-3 Barbados

Group E P W D L F A Pts
Martinique 2 2 0 0 6 1 6
St Vincent & the Grenadines 2 1 0 1 3 4 3
Anguilla 2 0 0 2 2 6 0

Group E Results:
(All matches in Fort de France, Martinique)
15-09-2008 Martinique 3-0 St Vincent & the Grenadines
17-09-2008 St Vincent & the Grenadines 3-1 Anguilla
19-09-2008 Martinique 3-0 Anguilla

Second Group Stage

Cuba, Guadeloupe and Trinidad & Tobago entered the competition at this point. They joined the 9 qualifiers from the first round in four groups of four. Again, the teams played the other group members once each at a single location. The top two from each group went forward to the final group stage and again home advantage was important as the three hosts won their groups.

Group F P W D L F A Pts
Guadeloupe 3 3 0 0 12 3 9
Grenada 3 1 1 1 7 6 4
Martinique 3 1 1 1 4 5 4
Cayman Islands 3 0 0 3 3 12 0

Group F Results:
(All matches in Stade Reni Serge Nabajoth, Les Abymes, Guadeloupe)
11-10-2008 Martinique 2-2 Grenada
11-10-2008 Guadeloupe 7-1 Cayman Islands
13-10-2008 Cayman Islands 0-1 Martinique
13-10-2008 Guadeloupe 2-1 Grenada
15-10-2008 Grenada 4-2 Cayman Islands
15-10-2008 Guadeloupe 3-1 Martinique

Group G P W D L F A Pts
Cuba 3 2 1 0 14 2 7
Barbados 3 2 1 0 6 4 7
Surinam 3 1 0 2 4 10 3
Netherlands Antilles 3 0 0 3 3 11 0

Group G Results:
(All matches in Estadio Pedro Marrero, Havana, Cuba)
27-08-2008 Barbados 3-2 Surinam
27-08-2008 Cuba 7-1 Netherlands Antilles
30-08-2008 Surinam 2-1 Netherlands Antilles
30-08-2008 Cuba 1-1 Barbados
31-08-2008 Netherlands Antilles 1-2 Barbados
31-08-2008 Cuba 6-0 Surinam

Group H P W D L F A Pts
Trinidad & Tobago 3 2 1 0 7 4 7
Antigua & Barbuda 3 2 0 1 8 7 6
Guyana 3 0 2 1 3 4 2
St. Kitts & Nevis 3 0 1 2 5 8 1

Group H Results:
(All matches in Marvin Lee Stadium, Macoya, Trinidad)
05-11-2008 Guyana 1-1 St. Kitts & Nevis
05-11-2008 Trinidad & Tobago 3-2 Antigua & Barbuda
07-11-2008 Antigua & Barbuda 2-1 Guyana
07-11-2008 Trinidad & Tobago 3-1 St. Kitts & Nevis
09-11-2008 St. Kitts & Nevis 3-4 Antigua & Barbuda
09-11-2008 Trinidad & Tobago 1-1 Guyana

Final Stage

Jamaica and Haiti joined the competition at this point. A mini tournament of two groups of four followed by a knock-out stage was hosted by Jamaica. The top two in each group qualified for the 2009 CONCACAF Gold Cup. The winners of Group A played the runners-up from Group B and vice versa in the semi finals. The final and third place match then decided the winners and final placings in the 2008 Caribbean Championship.

Group A P W D L F A Pts
Jamaica 3 2 1 0 7 2 7
Grenada 3 2 0 1 6 7 6
Trinidad & Tobago 3 1 1 1 4 4 4
Barbados 3 0 0 3 4 8 0

Group A Results:
03-12-2008 Trinidad & Tobago 1-2 Grenada (Kingston)
03-12-2008 Jamaica 2-1 Barbados (Kingston)
05-12-2008 Barbados 1-2 Trinidad & Tobago (Montego Bay)
05-12-2008 Jamaica 4-0 Grenada (Montego Bay)
07-12-2008 Grenada 4-2 Barbados (Trelawny)
07-12-2008 Jamaica 1-1 Trinidad & Tobago (Trelawny)

Group B P W D L F A Pts
Cuba 3 2 0 1 5 2 6
Guadeloupe 3 1 1 1 6 6 4
Haiti 3 1 1 1 4 4 4
Antigua & Barbuda 3 0 2 1 3 6 2

Group B Results:
04-12-2008 Guadeloupe 1-2 Cuba (Montego Bay)
04-12-2008 Haiti 1-1 Antigua & Barbuda (Montego Bay)
06-12-2008 Haiti 2-3 Guadeloupe (Trelawny)
06-12-2008 Cuba 3-0 Antigua & Barbuda (Trelawny)
08-12-2008 Antigua & Barbuda 2-2 Guadeloupe (Montego Bay)
08-12-2008 Cuba 0-1 Haiti (Montego Bay)

Semi Finals
11-12-2008 Cuba 2-2p Grenada Independence Park, Kingston
(Grenada won 6-5 on penalties)
11-12-2008 Jamaica 2-0 Guadeloupe Independence Park, Kingston
Third Place Play-Off
14-12-2008 Cuba 0-0p Guadeloupe Independence Park, Kingston

(Guadeloupe won 5-4 on penalties)

14-12-2008 Jamaica 2-0 Grenada Independence Park, Kingston

Central American Zone (Digicel UNCAF Nations Cup 2009)

The Unisn Centroamericana de Fztbol (UNCAF) organised the Gold Cup qualification tournament on behalf of their 7 members. The region was awarded five places in the finals. The tournament doubled up as the 2009 edition of the biennial UNCAF Nations Cup and was staged over eleven days in Tegucigalpa, Honduras.

Group A P W D L F A Pts
Honduras 3 3 0 0 8 2 9
El Salvador 3 1 1 1 5 4 4
Nicaragua 3 0 2 1 3 6 2
Belize 3 0 1 2 3 7 1
Group A Results
22-01-2009 El Salvador 1-1 Nicaragua Tegucigalpa
22-01-2009 Honduras 2-1 Belize Tegucigalpa
24-01-2009 Belize 1-4 El Salvador Tegucigalpa
24-01-2009 Honduras 4-1 Nicaragua Tegucigalpa
26-01-2009 Nicaragua 1-1 Belize Tegucigalpa
26-01-2009 Honduras 2-0 El Salvador Tegucigalpa
Group B P W D L F A Pts
Costa Rica 2 2 0 0 6 1 6
Panama 2 1 0 1 1 3 3
Guatemala 2 0 0 2 1 4 0
Group B Results
23-01-2009 Costa Rica 3-0 Panama Tegucigalpa
25-01-2009 Guatemala 1-3 Costa Rica Tegucigalpa
27-01-2009 Panama 1-0 Guatemala Tegucigalpa
Fifth Place Play-Off
29-01-2009 Nicaragua 2-0 Guatemala Tegucigalpa
Semi Finals
30-01-2009 Costa Rica 1-0 El Salvador Tegucigalpa
30-01-2009 Honduras 0-1 Panama Tegucigalpa
Third Place Play-Off
01-02-2009 Honduras 1-0 El Salvador Tegucigalpa
01-02-2009 Panama p0-0 Costa Rica Tegucigalpa

(Panama won 5-3 on penalties)

Team by Team Round Up

Anguilla – lost 3-1 twice – to Saint Vincent and to Martinique – to finish bottom of Group E in the first round.

Antigua and Barbuda – unbeaten winners of their first round group with seven points from three games, and almost as impressive in the second round where they overcame defeat by Trinidad & Tobago in their first game to qualify in second place following wins over Guyana and St Kitts & Nevis. Finished bottom of their group in the final stage despite creditable draws with Haiti and Guadeloupe.

Aruba – crashed out in the first round coming bottom of their group after a goalless draw with Netherlands Antilles and a 1-3 defeat by Grenada.

Bahamas – withdrew

Barbados – won their first round group with a perfect record but had to work a bit harder in the second group stage where a second-half come back was needed to beat Surinam in the first match. A creditable draw with hosts Cuba and a win over Netherlands Antilles put them into the final stage where they were consigned to fourth place following three narrow defeats.

Belize – finished bottom of their qualifying group as a result of defeats by Honduras and El Salvador. They did manage a 1-1 draw with fellow strugglers Nicaragua in their final game.

Bermuda – a win, a draw and a defeat were not enough to see them through their first round group. A bad start against Antigua & Barbuda was quickly forgotten thanks to a superb 7-0 thrashing of Saint-Martin but a goalless draw against hosts the Cayman Islands left them in third place when a win would have taken them through.

British Virgin Islands – came bottom of their first round group. Lost 4-0 to St Kitts & Nevis and 2-1 to Barbados.

Canada – qualified automatically

Cayman Islands – a win and two draws saw them safely through their first round group but they were unable to compete with Guadeloupe, Grenada and Martinique in the second round, losing all three games.

Costa Rica – beat Panama 3-0 and Guatemala 3-1 to easily win their group and qualify for the Gold Cup finals. They dispatched El Salvador in the semis but lost out to Panama in the regional final on penalties.

Cuba – received a bye through the first round and had the luxury of playing at home in the second round where they easily won their group with two wins and a draw. They didn’t have much trouble winning their group in the final stage either but came unstuck against Grenada in the semis where they lost on penalties. Another shoot-out defeat followed in the third place play-off but qualification for the finals was already secured. However, they later withdrew from the competition.

Dominica – outclassed by Guyana and Surinam on the way to a bottom place finish in their first round group.

Dominican Republic – withdrew

El Salvador – came second in their group, which was enough to secure qualification for the finals. They finished in fourth place overall in the Central American section following a semi final defeat by Costa Rica and a third place play-off loss to hosts Honduras.

French Guiana – withdrew

Grenada – made it through the first group stage as one of the best four runners-up following a win and a defeat. They then repeated the trick in the next round, again coming second in their group courtesy of a 4-2 win over the Cayman Islands on the final match day. They emerged as the surprise team of the tournament at the finals in Jamaica, beating both Trinidad & Tobago and Barbados on their way to the semi finals where Cuba were defeated on penalties following a 2-2 draw. The final against hosts Jamaica in Kingston proved to be a step too far but they will be well satisfied with their performance and a place in the Gold Cup finals for the first time ever.

Guadeloupe – received a bye into the second stage where they hosted Group F and won all three games without too much trouble. Came second in their final stage group with a win, draw and defeat before losing 2-0 to Jamaica in the semi finals but gained the consolation of third place with a penalty shoot out win over Cuba and qualification for the Gold Cup finals.

Guatemala – a dismal performance saw them lose both group games and they failed again in the fifth place play-off against Nicaragua.

Guyana – hosted and won their first round group with a victory over Dominica and a draw with neighbours Surinam. However, they couldn’t manage a win in the second round and went out in third place after two draws and a defeat to Antigua & Barbuda.

Haiti – received a bye directly into the final stage in Jamaica but weren’t able to negotiate a group containing Cuba, Guadeloupe and Antigua & Barbuda. They finished third with a win, a draw and a defeat and missed out on qualification due to their head-to-head record against Guadeloupe. Following Cuba’s withdrawal they were given a reprieve and went through after a drawing of lots with the other third placed team, Trinidad & Tobago.

Honduras – had the advantage of playing all their games at home in Tegucigalpa where the partisan home crowd inspired them to three convincing wins in Group A. However, they lost 1-0 to Panama in the semi finals and recovered to beat El Salvador 1-0 in the third place match. Qualification for the finals was secured.

Jamaica – had the luxury of entering the competition at the final stage and playing all their matches at home. They easily won their group, beat Guadeloupe 2-0 in the semi finals and Grenada by the same score in the final to qualify for the Gold Cup finals as Caribbean champions and with something to spare.

Martinique – won their first round group at home with convincing wins over Saint Vincent and Anguilla but went out in the second stage on goal difference following a win, draw and defeat in Guadeloupe.

Mexico – qualified automatically

Montserrat – withdrew

Netherlands Antilles – won their first round qualifying group at home in Willemstad but were out of their depth in the second stage in Cuba where they lost all three games including a 7-1 humiliation against the hosts.

Nicaragua – draws with El Salvador and Belize were enough to take them into the fifth place play-off despite a thrashing by Honduras in their other group game. They beat Guatemala 2-0 in the play-off to secure a place in the Gold Cup finals.

Panama – lost heavily to Costa Rica in their opening game but recovered well to beat Guatemala and qualify for the Gold Cup finals. They then best hosts Honduras in the semis and got their revenge against Costa Rica in the final, winning 5-3 on penalties after a 0-0 draw to become UNCAF champions.

Puerto Rico – withdrew

Saint Kitts and Nevis – a win and a defeat at home in the first round was just enough to see them through to the second stage. A draw in their opening game with Guyana was as good as it got in their group in Trinidad as they lost 3-1 to the hosts and 4-3 to Antigua & Barbuda to exit in the second round.

Saint Lucia – withdrew

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines – lost their opening match 3-0 to hosts Martinique but recovered to defeat Anguilla 3-1 in their second game and finish second in the group. However, their record wasn’t good enough to take them through as one of the best runners-up.

Saint-Martin – the whipping boys of Group C in the first round, losing 3-0, 7-0 and then 3-2 in an improved final performance. However, much more improvement will be necessary next time around.

Sint Maarten – withdrew

Surinam – made the short trip to Guyana for their fist round group and progressed as one of the best runners-up following a win and a draw. They weren’t quite good enough to get any further though. Their two nil lead was overturned in the last half hour of their first game against Barbados for a 3-2 defeat and, although victory over the Netherlands Antilles kept their hopes alive, they were outclassed by Cuba in the final game to finish third.

Trinidad and Tobago – received a bye into the second round and won Group H at home in Trinidad with two wins followed by a draw. They will be disappointed to miss out on qualification for the finals following a poor final group stage where they were upset by Grenada in the opening game. They beat Barbados but could only draw with hosts Jamaica when a win would have put them through.

Turks and Caicos Islands – withdrew

U.S. Virgin Islands – withdrew

USA – qualified automatically

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