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Women’s Olympic, World Cup Qualifying Suffers Delay

3 min read

Concacaf has pushed back the preliminary stages of the Concacaf’s women qualifying matches that are meant to determine the participants of the 2024 Olympic Games and the 2023 Women’s World Cup. These regional games have been postponed to February 2022 because of increased travel restrictions that are related to the novel coronavirus. The announcement was made by the Football’s governing body for North and Central America and the Caribbean. Originally, the first-round qualifiers were supposed to start next month during the FIFA women’s match window. The body released a statement saying that, “Concacaf was forced to make changes to its schedule because the athletes would have to enter countries that are currently battling to contain the novel corona virus.”

“The confederation has the best interest of the players and this is the right decision for the players, the tournament and officials.” Concacaf has already created groups for the 30 teams that are expected to battle for a position in both Women’s Olympic football games and the World Cup. The qualifiers will begin in the group stage where the nations will engage in two away matches and two matches at home. Every group is meant to produce a winner that will be promoted to the Concacaf Women’s Championship, joining Canada and the United States — the region’s highest ranked countries. Canada and the United States were given a straight path into the region’s last qualifying tournament that is scheduled to be held in July 2022.

The road to the 2023 World Cup has been revamped with a fresh format that makes the inaugural Women’s Championship more exciting to watch. The United States women’s team won the last world cup in 2019, cementing its place as the two-time reigning champions. The 2023 World Cup will be held in New Zealand and Australia. On the other hand, the Olympics will be held in Paris where Canada will get a chance to defend the crown that they won in this year’s Tokyo Olympics.

The Reggae Girlz went into the 2019 world cup as underdogs but ended up delivering the ‘’Feel good story’’ of the tournament. The Jamaican women’s team remains the only Caribbean team to make it into the world cup. The most impressive part of the story is that Jamaica didn’t have a women’s team five years prior to the last world cup. 

The Jamaican Football Federation disbanded the Reggae Girlz after they failed to qualify for the 2015 World Cup in Canada. Then, after they were resurrected, the Federation suspended funding for them again while facing budget shortfalls in 2016. Players on the Jamaican women’s national soccer team credit Bob Marley’s daughter, Cedella, with saving the squad. The singer and entrepreneur spearheaded fundraising efforts for the Reggae Girlz after the team was disbanded.

Jamaican fans will be happy to know that Khadija ‘’Bunny’’ Shaw is in red hot form and she even scored goal in a very competitive Manchester derby match against Manchester united. She recently signed for Manchester city after establishing herself as one of the best goal scorers in the French league. If she can maintain the same performances for Jamaica then the Reggae Girlz will easily qualify for the world cup and Olympics. 

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