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Should CONMEBOL and CONCONCAF be merged?

Discussion in 'Sports Talk' started by Drewcifer, Dec 11, 2005.

  1. Drewcifer

    Drewcifer Agent of Karma

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    Should CONCONCAF (the North and Central American football/soccer confederation) be merged with CONMEBOL (the South American one)?

    Pretty much everyone I have talked to around here who follows the sport to any degree likes the idea. Every Mexican I know supports it. The South Americans I know think it would be cool too.

    In international football right now the US and Mexico spend a lot of time playing each other and have relatively few meaningful matches against other teams at our level or better. It gets boring, we are the only two teams in CONCONCAF that can play at a higher level. It looks like we are both getting to the point where the rest of the competition in CONCONCAF (besides Costa Rica which is pretty good but a half step behind) is holding us back from developing further. I think getting schooled by Brazil and Argentina in the short run will help both of our teams get better in the long run while at the same time we can already more or less hang with the mid-level teams in South America like Paraguay and Ecuador. It would also make the Copa America a hemispheric championship which would be awsome.

    Is it a good idea? If so what would it take to make it happen?
     
  2. DBear

    DBear unbeliever

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    When the Oceanic federation merges with the Asian federation, then you can bring this up again. Til then, I don't see it happening.
     
  3. jeriko one

    jeriko one Exalted Fleetlord

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    It is always better to play silly matches and participate in the World Cup then playing serious and competitive matches and not participating in the World Cup. So if I was a Mexican or an American I would not support this idea.
     
  4. Drewcifer

    Drewcifer Agent of Karma

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    Realistically I think both the US and Mexico would still have a pretty good chance of qualifying on a fairly regular basis if the confederations were merged and got the qualifying spots from both. We aren't talking about Bhutan and the Comoros Islands, both teams made it out of group play in the last World Cup for what that is worth. When we do play against the teams from South America that aren't Argentina or Brazil we don't do too badly. Mexico played in the last Copa America and went pretty deep (one of the last four teams IIRC, though they did end up getting blown out by Brazil 4-0 in the end) and US is as good as or better than Mexico, outside of Azteca (one of the higher national stadiums in the world altitudewise) they generally don't beat us these days.
     
  5. willemvanoranje

    willemvanoranje Curitibano

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    I think it would seriously improve the level of football and the World Cup..
     
  6. Gav

    Gav Chieftain

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    er, what happens to trinidad? or jamaica? or costa rica? there would be far too many teams. african countries get along fine without needing to play european teams to "school them", why would America be any different?

    oh, and if you're losing 2-1 to ireland then you arent playing at a "higher level"
     
  7. willemvanoranje

    willemvanoranje Curitibano

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    Trinidad.. Jamaica.. Costa Rica.. it's all teams that really don't have much to do on the World Cup. Firs round and they're out. If you replace them by for example Uruguay or Colombia or something... well, you get the point. Now I didn't really get that remark on the 2-1..
     
  8. Drewcifer

    Drewcifer Agent of Karma

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    I thought friendlies didn't matter.

    A higher level than the other teams in CONCONCAF, Mexico and the US don't have anyone else to really push them, Costa Rica isn't bad, after that there is a huge drop off, Trinidad is perhaps the weakest team in the World Cup.

    If Trinidad can beat Uruguay, Colombia, Bolivia, Chile, etc. then they deserve to play in the cup.
     
  9. sysyphus

    sysyphus So they tell me

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    I think it's a good idea, especially since (I think) CONMEBOL countries play their season in sync with European leagues, unlike the US and Mexico whose leagues play a half year out of sync.

    This would be good for Canada because most of our top players play for European clubs, and since CONCACAF tournaments and WC qualifiers often conflict with the European schedule, we have a very difficult time getting our best players back over to play in those games. Hopefully a merge with CONMEBOL would reverse that.
     
  10. FredLC

    FredLC A Lawyer as You Can See! Retired Moderator

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    Interestingly enough, I think diffrently.

    Merging Concacaf and Conmebol will create a huge qualifying round (by current Conmebol standards, what makes sense since you are pretty much arguing the absorbtion of Concacaf by Conmebol), or generate a qualifying race divided in groups in which not all teams fight each other, diminishing tenfold the possibility of contact with Brazil and Argentina.

    The division in groups is cool to Europe, because there is plenty of good football there. In America, we would be lowering the standards.

    The problem, IMHO, is just that FIFA conceeds too many spots to Concacaf. I think it should have two spots only, and perhaps, just one and a half (let the second be disputed like it happens with the 5th south america spot today). The remaining spot should go to either europe or South America, didn't really think through to figure out where.

    As to meet great teams, what you have to do is set friendly matches and offer good money for the winners. That way confederations of good footballing countries will send full power of their squads, specially if they are away rom the world cup and can spare a date.

    Regards :).
     
  11. DBear

    DBear unbeliever

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    It is also bad for logistical reasons. Canada-Argentina, anyone?
     
  12. naervod

    naervod My current user title

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    I think its a pretty good idea. Mexico I know has clubs playing in the Copa Libertadores and Copa Sudamericana, and DC United recently played in the Copa Sudamericana and did fairly well (they lost out on away goals or some minimal margin to the semi-finalists, Universidad Católica). Also, they were replacing a Costa Rican team. I know the USA, Mexico, Costa Rica, and Honduras have all participated in the Copa América and all done reasonably well. The USA participated back in 1995 when we were still largely considered a joke by the rest of the world. We beat both Argentina and Chile to advance out of the group stage and then beat Mexico on penalties to advance to the semis where we lost out to Brazil by only a goal and then lost the third-place to Colombia. Honduras were third place after coming second in their group to Costa Rica in 2001. Mexico also advanced out of their group that year. Mexico ended up as runners-up to Colombia after beating Chile and Uruguay while Costa Rica lost out to Uruguay in the quarters. Honduras however beat Brazil before losing to Colombia and beating Uruguay in third-place match. Mexico have also been third place twice and runners up once more. I can't speak for other teams, but I know the USA has a pretty good record against CONMEBOL teams, so I would say the top teams in CONMEBOL could definitely cut it in terms of qualifying. The top 8 teams could make it to the WC and an Asian and Oceanian team could playoff instead of N.America-Asia and S. America-Oceania.

    If things were kept the way they were, I think it should at least be the top two from CONCACAF qualifying, as Mexico and the USA or any team that beats them definitely deserve WC spots. I think teams like Costa Rica have also improved and they could playoff against a South America side or something. Basically give CONMEBOL 5.5 spots and CONCACAF 2.5.

    About logistics, its really no different than Australia traveling to Saudi Arabia or something as they will now do.
     
  13. MCdread

    MCdread Couldn't she get drowned?

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    Yes, I believe it's a good idea, and I've been a fan of it being implemented for many years.
    First of all, unlike the opinions of many, I don't think that Mexico or USA would find it so much harder to qualify. Both teams, especially Mexico, have performed better than most south american teams in both Copa America (direct competition) and even the WC. Perhaps it would be harder for teams like Costa Rica et al. But what's wrong with that? If Costa Rica can't hold Colombia, Peru or Uruguay, do they really deserve to be there instead of these teams? I don't think so.
    Secondly, it would be actually better for most CONCACAF teams as they could play more games against better opposition and improve their own level.
    The logistic questions that were raised don't seem that important in my view. In Asia we already have teams that have to travel constantly from Middle East to the Far East, especially as these are the stronghold regions of asian football. It will get only worse with Australia coming in and having to travel to Iran or Saudi Arabia or Lebanon, etc. Besides, in Asia there is the problem of longitude and jet lag. In the Americas there isn't any real problem with that as the continent covers the same hemisphere. The difference between Northeastern Brazil and Western USA is no greater than that between Portugal or Ireland and the Caucasus and Kazakhstan.

    @Fred: The system in qualification does not need to be the same as in Europe, although we have lots of crappy matches with the likes of San Marino, Andorra, etc.
    You could use a similar system to the one being used in CONCACAF right now, where firstly, they get rid of the caribbean minnows and then only form the groups with the more competitive teams. It would also be better for the always complaining european clubs and their players. This would probably mean less games than the insane 18 currently played in south america, thus meaning more rested players.
     
  14. FredLC

    FredLC A Lawyer as You Can See! Retired Moderator

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    Yeah, I know that there is plenty of BAD football in Europe as well.

    Anyway, I don't like the idea of a "first stage qualification" in which the greatest teams don't take part. It's elitist, and unjustified for our regional standards. Unlike the Caribbean, there are no teams which are simply unable to perform - I mean, in 1993, Bolivia and Colombia breezed through the qualifying race - this year, they finished last, defeated by the former punching bag Venezuela. Ecuador qualified and Paraguay is constantly getting a spot, replacing old regulars such as Peru, Chile and Uruguay (which is, as you know, the first world champion and a former major power).

    In all, while there are teams which goes through stages of being the "second" powers, fact is that except for Brazil and Argentina, there is no gap of quality that justifies such model.

    As for the number of matches, well... qualifying race goes through three years, starting not much after the America Cup and going all the way to the last year before the tournament. It gives an average of 6 matches a year - and right now, the games are played in the same dates as in the European race, when there is no club football anyway. This is hardly enough to justify the whining of European clubs - specially because they usually hire players AFTER they make it to the National Team, so they know rather well where they are getting into. Anyway, wheter justified or not, I doubt that the interest of the european teams should dictate on how the South America national teams schedule should work.

    Regards :).
     
  15. MCdread

    MCdread Couldn't she get drowned?

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    What's elitist is not wanting to play with weaker northern teams because it reduces the quality standard. :p
    Teams like Mexico, Costa Rica and USA have already played in the Copa America since 1993 at least. Their clubs have played in the Libertadores, why can't they compete alongside south america in WC qualifications? Surely it could only improve the level of CONCACAF football and the WC level itself. Because unlike it stands now, many people from south america complain that there are too many weak teams from central america and very few teams from their own confederation, given the good average quality. If they were merged, and let's say that the entire continent had 8 or 9 spots, and only one or two north american teams qualified among 6 or 7 south american ones, that only means that the WC is getting a quality increase, no?

    Besides, the current south american system only started for the 1998 WC. It's hardly a tradition. Before that teams were usually divided into 2 groups of 4 or 5 teams or 3 groups of 3.
     
  16. FredLC

    FredLC A Lawyer as You Can See! Retired Moderator

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    Only that such is not the reason why I don't like it.

    The sphere of competition being South American goes a long way. To have to play the caribbean and North America would feel a lot like an intrusion. And why Conmebol anyway? It's like making the European teams play the Asia teams because the two pollitically separated continents actually form Eurasia. AFAIK, they could very well let mexico and the US play the Europe qualifying race - they can even compete the prequels to the tournament if that is what it takes.

    Anyway, the whole argument can be reversed. Allowing costa rica, trinidad & tobago and the likes to play the world cup may very well lead to an increase of quality for them - and, as so, increase continental football as a whole, not by the exclusion of the weak, but by their emancipation. ;)

    Regards :).
     
  17. MCdread

    MCdread Couldn't she get drowned?

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    The WC are 3 games every four years at most for those teams. Belonging to the same confederation of south american teams would be competitive games on a regular basis during 2 or 3 years of WC qualification.

    Btw, UEFA already has asian teams. ;) Israel, Turkey, the caucasian republics, Kazakhstan.
     
  18. FredLC

    FredLC A Lawyer as You Can See! Retired Moderator

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    What regular bases?

    Brazil Played bolivia twice in the last 4 years. None of them with our A team. Perhaps two more games against Argentina, and that's the extent of high-training they got in the period.

    Two more would not be much of a trouble than, huh? ;)
     
  19. MCdread

    MCdread Couldn't she get drowned?

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    Costa Rica for example, could play twice against Brazil's B team, twice against Argentina, twice against Paraguay, twice against Colombia, twice against Mexico, Twice aginst USA, twice against Uruguay, etc. Which is much better than play twice against Mexico and twice against USA as it stands. For the likes of Costar Rica, Honduras, T&T, Jamaica, etc., the uruguays, chiles, equadors and even the bolivias of this world are an improvement over what they have now. Even if they didn't play against Brazil and Argentina.

    No, but as far as I know it's between north, central and south america that they do summits to talk of ALCA and other transcontinental iniciatives. American investment yes, American football no. Is that it? :p
     

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