The Guyana contingent that would be participating in the 2020 CONCACAF Women’s U-17 Championship first-round qualifiers in Curacao today jetted off for that destination.
In this squad are 6 internationally-based and 14 Guyana-based players, which comprise 2 goal-keepers, 5 defenders, 8 midfielders and 5 forwards. They will be engaged in this competition, which began on August 17 and will conclude on August 25.
Head Coach of this National U-17 Women’s Team is Akilah Castello. She said that while some last-minute changes had to be made to the squad, individual technical and physical evaluations have influenced the selection of the final 20.
“Continuous individual technical and physical assessments were done to arrive at the final squad. We believe that, provided the girls are technically and physically prepared, we will have a better chance at managing tactical decisions one match at a time,” Castello said.
Guyana’s first match will be against hosts Curacao, and it is scheduled for Wednesday 21st August at 20:30hrs at the Stadion Ergilio Hato Willemstad.
Guyana’s next ‘Group D’ matches will be as follows: against St. Vincent & the Grenadines on 23rd August at 18:00hrs; and against The Bahamas on 25th August at 17:00hrs.
According to CONCACAF, 32 teams will be participating in these qualifiers, which comprise of the lowest-ranked 16 teams and the 16 higher- ranked teams, all based on the CONCACAF Women’s Under-17 Ranking as at July 2018. The top-finisher of each group will advance to the knock-out stage of the championships.
The 16 lower-ranked teams are: Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bonaire, Cayman Islands, Curacao, Dominica, Guyana, Honduras, Martinique, Saint Kitts & Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent & the Grenadines and US Virgin Islands.
Each of the 16 higher ranked teams has been placed in one of four groups: E, F, G and H, and play will be in a round-robin format, following which “the top three finishers in each of the groups will join the winners of Groups A, B, C and D (from the qualifiers) in the Round of 16,” according to CONCACAF.
The 16 teams participating in the group stage of the Final Championship are (in alphabetical order): Bermuda, Canada, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Haiti, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Puerto Rico, Trinidad & Tobago and the United States.
The knockout stage of the competition – the Round of 16, quarterfinals, semifinals and final – will be played in its entirety in a single match elimination format, with the finalists and third place finisher automatically qualifying for the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup 2020, according to FIFA.