The Concacaf Nations League is undergoing some format changes starting in September, and on a milestone 100th episode of the SSFC Podcast, we dive into what those changes are and what it means for the USMNT.
The format changes to the Nations League sees League A expand to 16 teams starting in September. They are also adding a quarterfinal leg that is a two-legged, home-and-away format. However, this format change sees the top 4 teams in Concacaf, including the USMNT, skipping the group stage and entering at the quarterfinal stage. This means they’ll only need to play 2 games potentially to qualify for the Nations League Finals as well as the 2024 Copa América.
After the break, we discuss the fact that while it’s better for the USMNT from a preparation standpoint for the 2026 World Cup, it really stinks that we don’t get to participate in the group stage anymore of truly the greatest tournament on the planet. Traveling to islands to play is something that most big teams in the rest of the world don’t get to do, and it’s fun too. The level playing field that was supposed to define the Concacaf Nations League appears to be gone, at least for the next two editions of the tournament.
We end with some thanks to everyone who’s ever listened to the show, all our guests, and some people who provided some extra help or encouragement along the way. It’s been a thrill to bring 100 episodes of this show to the masses, and it’s truly an honor to know that so many of you willingly listened and have enjoyed it along the way. The show goes on...here’s to the next 100!
Hit the comments to discuss the episode and continue the Nations League talk.