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US, Mexico, Costa Rica through: CONCACAF demands your respect

Jun 26, 2014, 3:22 PM EDT

concacaf

If the FIFA rankings came out today, the Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football would occupy three spots in the Top 20.

Think about that. Even if you hate the FIFA rankings system, it’s a remarkable advance for CONCACAF.

The United States, Mexico, Costa Rica and Honduras entered the tournament at positions 13, 20, 28 and 33, respectively. If the rankings were calculated today, only Honduras would drop a bunch and the US would fall a little thanks to the play of France, Chile and the Netherlands but remain in the Top 15.

Mexico would have jumped almost 70 points to 952, while Costa Rica’s leap is even taller: almost 160 points to 927. The United States performance in group play actually cost the nation some points, as the US is down to 1018 points.

Put into perspective, all three nations will pass England, whose FIFA points, for the record, will drop to 911. I’d say make your own jokes, but they use a different three-digits for police emergencies across the Atlantic.

[ MORE: Talking points - Ghosts of World Cup qualifying finally fade for Mexico ]

[ MORE: Convinced? Klinsmann's personnel moves keyed US advance to knockout round ]

[ MORE: Costa Rica wins Group D after stalemate against England ]

Honduras is going to drop for days, but let’s face it: their return to the Cup was a significant success for the nation that plays its home games under barely any lights and uses tactics that could make Luis Suarez blush.

Will the ride last any longer for CONCACAF? Perhaps that will be the biggest test, but as we told you to start the tournament, the confederation needed a run like this.

source: APWould you rule out Costa Rica beating Greece, a UEFA nation that has looked meager at best?

Would you rule out the US topping Belgium, whose last World Cup Round of 16 experience was in 2002?

Or if Belgium fails to win the group, Algeria, slain by the US in 2010?

Would you rule out Mexico over the Netherlands, give their guile under Miguel Herrera and the play of Ochoa?

Maybe you would. Maybe they’ll all lose, as certainly no one will be favoring any. But the fact remains that CONCACAF teams have risen above the following nations in their groups: Portugal, Italy, England, Ghana, Uruguay, Croatia and Cameroon.

Not too shabby for an also-ran.

  1. mazblast - Jun 26, 2014 at 3:29 PM

    “Three CONCACAF teams in the round of 16? This is unacceptable. We must take away one of their spots in the World Cup for 2018.”–FIFA :)

    Congratulations to the USA, Mexico, and Costa Rica, and to South America, which has five of its six sides in the round of 16.

  2. mikeevergreen - Jun 26, 2014 at 4:40 PM

    How about for the next cycle, you take out one of those post qualifying playoffs, and hand the bid to CONCACAF 4. CONMEBOL 5 plays Oceania 1. Asia 5 stays home.

    Think that’s not fair? Here’s the records for the post qualifying for the last three cycles:

    2006 (goals aggregate):

    Trinidad & Tobago 2, Bahrain 1
    Australia (then with Oceania) 4, Uruguay 2 (PK after 1-1 tie)

    2010:

    New Zealand 1, Bahrain 0
    Uruguay 2, Costa Rica 1

    2014:

    Mexico 9, New Zealand 3
    Uruguay 5, Jordan 0

    That’s CONCACAF, CONMEBOL, and OCEANIA 2-1, ASIA 0-3. CONCACAF gets the bid on goal differential.

    • rmccleary97 - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:27 PM

      CONMEBOL went 13W, 2D, 3L in group play; the losses were Chile (to Group B winner Netherlands), Uruguay (to Group D winner Costa Rica), and Ecuador (to Group E runner-up Switzerland). No way it loses a half-spot; if anything, there’s an argument to give it a full 6th. CONCACAF went 5W, 3D, 4L; strip out Honduras and it looks more impressive – but it highlights how CONCACAF’s depth fizzles out pretty quickly. No way would I give it a full spot; 3.5 looks about right.

      The confederation that looked really bad (after looking pretty decent in 2010) is AFC. 12 games, 0 wins, 9 goals scored. South Korea drew Russia 1-1, Japan drew Greece 0-0, Iran drew Nigeria 0-0. If you ignored 2010 and prior and just look at this go-around, 3.5 spots looks really generous.

  3. braxtonrob - Jun 26, 2014 at 6:38 PM

    No way is Greece going to beat Costa Rica. It is going to ultra-fun to watch them play a Quarter-final game!

    • midtec2005 - Jun 26, 2014 at 7:42 PM

      Costa Rica definitely has a good chance! Hopefully they pull it off.

    • ez0682 - Jun 26, 2014 at 7:51 PM

      Stf up all fluke. We at conmebol crap at that sht cacacaf also uefa teams do too

      • nappy25 - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:40 PM

        Cool story bro.

  4. ez0682 - Jun 26, 2014 at 7:49 PM

    Hahahaha caca caf yeah okay
    We at conmebol crap on these useless teams. All fluke at this year’s world cup. No worries y’all will b put where yall belong soon

    • nappy25 - Jun 26, 2014 at 11:41 PM

      I see your story needed a sequel.

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