The CONCACAF Gold Cup – the official national championship of Confederations of North, Central America and the Caribbean – will expand to 16 teams in 2019, CONCACAF announced today.
The expansion from 12 to 16 teams will begin in the 15th edition of the biennial CONCACAF Gold Cup tournament, which will take place in the summer of 2019. The tournament will include an upgraded qualifying process; the details will be revealed on March 7 at the CONCACAF Nations League launch event in Miami, Florida.
Since the first Gold Cup in 1991, every edition has been played in the U.S., along with Canada (2015) and Mexico (1993 and 2003). The governing body is exploring the possibility of featuring the tournament in Central America and the Caribbean.
According to the CONCACAF President Victor Montagliani, this change comes in efforts to raise the quality across the region.
“By widening access to these important tournaments for more of our Member Associations, we work towards our goal of ensuring that the football produced in CONCACAF region is of the highest quality in the world,” said Montagliani.
Besides Canada winning the cup in 2000, every other championship has been won by Mexico and the United States. Mexico holds the record for most championships with seven, while current champions, United States, are one behind.