OT: Copa and Gold Cup to Merge

Submitted by grand river fi… on June 6th, 2016 at 3:40 PM


ESPN Deportes is reporting that discussions are underway between Concacaf and Conmebol to merge the Copa America and the Gold Cup.

This would really fill out the NT calendar and give them a meaningful competition in addition to the WC. The level of competition in an average Copa America is light years beyond an average Gold Cup, and Mexico already participates in most Copa Americas as a guest.  I can see this being a huge boost to the CONCACAF national teams, and CONMEBOL gets the US tv $ they need.  

Interested to see the boards thoughts. Maybe people are less enthused after the Colombia game?



June 6th, 2016 at 3:48 PM ^

Great idea and great for the USMNT. Can't be the best unless we play and beat the best. 

Never mind that we can't seem to even beat average CONCACAF teams, but still, a good idea. 

Brian Griese

June 6th, 2016 at 3:51 PM ^

Though, how would it be decided who takes part in the Confederations Cup? Would the highest placed CONCACAF member from lets say 2017 "Copa/Conca Cup" play the highest one from the 2019 "Cup?"  If the "Cup" is kep at 16 teams like it is thisyear, what happens if no CONCACAF team makes it through to the knockout stage or if only two teams make it through and both get knocked out in the first round, - who really finsihed higher?

The Gold Cup currently has 12 teams that qualify - would the "Cup" expand to 22?




June 6th, 2016 at 4:05 PM ^

I think the Confederations Cup is the least relevant issue. I'm sure things will work out.

My guess is that a merged tournament would net fewer teams from CONCACAF, though of course we don't know the details. Not optimal, but I think it's worth the sacrifice. The Gold Cup is irrelevant.


June 6th, 2016 at 7:31 PM ^

confed cup always has weird format it basically makes up as it goes. In years past, guest teams have won the copa america and gold cup, and it's the runner up that's invited. In your scenario, the previous world cup result determines the concacaf rep (like one year turkey got in as 3rd place). There will likely remain 1 team from each confederation, 2 from europe and 1 for the host

google translate tells me i was right, it would be in the US *every time* which is an incalculable loss to the fans in south america, and i enjoyed watching the games in argentina etc

"Conmebol affiliates have to fight the fact that South American fans would feel deprived , there would be a rejection by the feeling that they have reviled your property"

they will not take kindly to their tournament being moved far away

also tells me it will be every 4 years, which makes sense since i don't see the top club players participating otherwise. So there will not be a 2017 and 2019 cup


June 6th, 2016 at 10:36 PM ^

Well, the Confed Cup has been every four years for a while now.  Last time there was a two-year gap was 2003-05, so a 2019 edition never was scheduled.

The format has always been the same, too.  The World Cup holder, the host, and the top team from each of the six continents.  If a team qualifies multiple ways, then they dip down to that continent's runner-up, or third place if they need to.  (Also, for some reason, a couple of continents have it in there that their champion can opt out.)  So it's not that the Confed Cup always has two from Europe, it's just that the World Cup holder is usually from there so that's how it ends up.  If a guest team wins the continental competition like the Copa America, then the best performer from the host continent goes.


June 6th, 2016 at 3:54 PM ^

Hmm..I thought the original report was just the discussions to make the US the permenant host of the Copa America, not neccsarily merge the Gold Cup and the Copa into one tourney.  Basically the US has the infrastructure to support it year in and year out.  Does this mean that the US would always get to participate in the Copa America as a 'host'?  I don't know, but I imagine that the US Soccer Federation may ask that as their price.

Personally I don't want the Gold Cup and Copa America to merge.  The Gold Cup happens once every two years which provides more tourney practice for the USMNT as opposed to a once every 4 year tourney.  Plus would teams like Panama, Guatamala, Jamacia even qualify for a merged Copa America and Gold Cup?  Probably not.  I imagine most nations besides the US and Mexico in CONCACAF would not want a merger.  Now the US playing in the Copa in addition to the Gold Cup?  I would be down with that.


June 6th, 2016 at 10:40 PM ^

I agree, I don't think the article is stating the competitions will merge.  I see where the "for all of America" line might give that impression, but I think it's just a figure of speech.  And I like the Gold Cup the way it is, because yeah, I like the two-year schedule and the fact that some schmutzy little teams like Martinique and Guadeloupe usually end up competing.


June 6th, 2016 at 4:02 PM ^

Gave you an upvote, OP, but you need some serious editing there.

This is a big, big upgrade for North American international soccer. The Gold Cup is an irrelevant curiosity; Copa America is a far better competition, and joining in with it would be a huge win for fans of everyone. Should keep the "Copa America" name, which is awesome, btw.

Unless the terms are absolutely ridiculous (80% of the cash going south, only 3 North American teams a year, that sort of thing) this is a no-lose proposition. And I am perfectly ok with CONMEBOL getting favorable terms, like getting all of their teams in while only some CONCACAF nations get in. Especially given the relative number of nations in contrast with the relative level of play.

The European Championships are nearly as good as the World Cup, and in some ways they provide better value in aesthetic quality; this will not equal those, but it gets pretty close.

The only reason to be "debbie downer" about this is that the USMNT is at a low ebb right now. However, when it is good (and it can be good) it can do real damage in a competition like this.

Great news if it happens.

grand river fi…

June 6th, 2016 at 4:16 PM ^

The level of play in a merged Copa-Gold cup might not equal that of the Euros, but one thing the Copa has always had going for it is the fierce atmosphere around the whole competition. Where the World Cup seems to play out in under an olympic like atmosphere with lots of open games and positive play till the 2nd Round or Quarterfinals, the Copa usually sees teams adopitng a win at all costs attitude from the begging. The increased intensity would serve the USMNT well.


June 6th, 2016 at 4:20 PM ^

Not sure if you're getting informatiion from somewhere besides this article, but this article says nothing about the Gold Cup merging with Copa America, in fact it says absolutely nothing about the Gold Cup at all.  It wouldn't make sense to eliminate the Gold Cup since only 6 CONCACAF teams participate in a 16 team Copa America.  With that said, hosting a 16 team Copa America every four years would be awesome for the US and you could still have the Gold Cup the year before or after (or both) like they're doing this cycle.

But for countries like Guatemala. Honduras, Cuba, Panama, etc, the Gold Cup is a big deal and eliminating it would be bad news.


June 6th, 2016 at 6:08 PM ^

Are you sure?  I can't read the article.

Four years of Spanish and all I can do is say my name and count to about 20.



June 6th, 2016 at 6:14 PM ^

In my perfect world, CONCACAF teams get a chance to qualify for Copa America, and we still keep the Gold Cup as well, using it as an atmosphere to test fringe national team guys and young players. And I think it's good experience for WCQ.

Sent from MGoBlog HD for iPhone & iPad


June 6th, 2016 at 7:12 PM ^

this is badly needed from a competitive standpoint. Too many gold cups have guest teams ranging from brazil to (wtf) south korea where the 3rd string is used and even guest teams like mexico have done the same in the copa america to preserve their starters for the gold cup...

In addition most of the gold cup teams suck shit, so attendance is pitiful, and the format of 12 teams in copa america renders the group stage boring. Finally, as is they're mostly just redundant since they mimic (in a condensed form) world cup qualifying

as we're seeing now, it's just better competition, maybe even approaching the euro cup. My only concern is it would be held in the US/mexico almost every time and never in places like chile. For example, the copa america was always in south america and for its 100th it's in the US? Greed trumps all apparently


June 6th, 2016 at 8:11 PM ^

This Sunday two Officials from CONCACAF practically confirm it. Copa America would belong to the whole continent every four years and with the US as the host country.

One spokesman from CONCACAF was blunt: there are only a few little details missing, just very little.

Another spokesperson gives more clues: CONMEBOL asked to give its response after the competition. But today they're convinced that it will be passed in their upcoming congress.
And there's more: " the stadium security, telecommunications, access, they're convinced that US can fit the bill, plus the absolute flexibility around migratory paperwork. Everyone's happy including of course, the players who travel without problem accompanied by their families. "
Proof of that is that in the same media elevator at the University of Phoenix stadium, a reporter ran into a numerous group of people family and friends of Barcelona's striker Luis Suárez.

Also the infrastructure within the stadiums and hotels fullfil and sometimes surpass the usual standard of the players playing in Europe.

And of course the economic aspect is very important, the prizes for participating in the Chilean Copa America and in Argentina before that, weren't only uneven but they were sometimes delivered the the confederation a year late and not always complete.

This "little details" are about the travel time to get to different host cities, which to coaches, steals time away from training, as the dead times caused by this could be better spent.
There's also an issue with some of the tickets that were distributed in a generous way between the sponsors of CONMEBOL, specially for the semifinals and the final have been restricted and the organism requieres more of those tickets.
But there's something even more complicated as the members of CONCACAF agree. Would the members of CONMEBOL have to fight against the perception from South American fans would feel that the competition has been taken from them, there would be a rejection caused by the sensation that the property of the tournament has been sullied.

Sorry for the formatting or possible errors I was translating the article on the phone, also sorry for re-posting the whole article but perhaps it would make it easier to understand a discuss.


June 6th, 2016 at 9:10 PM ^

This would be awesome. The Gold Cup alone is crap. It's basically USA vs. Mexico and anything else is a major upset. Playing in Copa every year would be a major upgrade to the competition and, while we'll probably be a very average team, it would be much better for the development of the national team. CONCACAF soccer alone just isn't good. Adding the generally technically skilled CONMEBOL teams to the schedule each year would be huge.