The 2022 Concacaf Men’s Under-20 Championship will now serve as qualifiers for the region’s men’s representatives at the 2024 Summer Olympic Games in Paris, Concacaf announced Thursday.
Previously, qualification was determined through a separate Concacaf Men’s Olympic Qualification tournament that occurred in March prior to the Summer Olympic Games. The decision to release players for Olympic qualifying was previously left to the clubs, though often resulted in MLS teams losing a number of players as the league season kicked off.
Ahead of this year's Tokyo Olympics, 35 players were called up to Concacaf Olympic Qualifying.
"To provide member associations with a better opportunity to select their best young players, the Concacaf Council has approved a new streamlined approach which will link FIFA U-20 World Cup qualification and Olympic qualification to the Confederation’s regional men’s U-20 Championships, which will take place in the summer starting in 2022," Concacaf said in their release.
The 2022 Concacaf Men’s Under-20 Championship will qualify its semifinalists (four teams) to the FIFA Men’s U-20 World Cup Indonesia 2023 and its finalists (two teams) to the 2024 Paris Summer Olympic Games.
Following the conclusion of the Qualifiers, 20 teams are slated to participate at the Concacaf Men’s Under-20 Championship in summer 2022. This will include the top four teams from the Qualifiers and the region’s top 16 ranked teams based on the Concacaf Men’s Under-20 rankings who will receive a bye to the Championship.
This year's Concacaf Men’s Under-20 Qualifiers will all be played in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic from November 5-14, 2021.
The United States have won the previous two editions of the Championship.