Copa Centroamericana

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Copa Centroamericana
UNCAF Copa Centroamericana logo.png
The current Copa Centroamericana official logo, in use since 2011
Founded February 19, 1991
Region Central America (UNCAF)
Number of teams 7
Current champions  Costa Rica (8th time)
Most successful team(s)  Costa Rica (8 titles)
Website Official website
2014 Copa Centroamericana

The Copa Centroamericana ([ˈko.pa ˌsen̪.tɾo.a.me.ɾiˈka.no], Spanish for "Central American Cup") is the main association football competition contested by the senior men's national teams of the members of the Unión Centroamericana de Fútbol (UNCAF), the sport's Central American governing body. Held every two years since 1991, in the years before and after the FIFA World Cup tournaments, it was originally called the UNCAF Nations Cup (Spanish: Copa de Naciones de la UNCAF), changing to the current name in 2011.

The tournament consists of two stages. In the group round of the tournament finals, the seven teams competed in two round-robin groups, one of four teams and the other of three, for points, with the top two teams in each group proceeding. These four teams advanced to the semifinal stage of the final round, where the winners advance into the final while the losers dispute a third-place match. The fifth-place match is disputed between the third-ranked teams of the group stage. Teams from the tournament would go on to participate in other competitions depending on their performance on the Copa Centroamericana. Such competitions are the CONCACAF Gold Cup and, much more notably, the Copa América.

The 12 Central American Championship tournaments have been won by four different national teams: Costa Rica are the most successful national team of the competition with eight victories. Honduras have won three titles. Guatemala and Panama have won one title each. To date, Costa Rica and Honduras are the only sides in history to have won consecutive titles, with the former winning an unprecedented three titles in 2003, 2005 and 2007.

The most recent championship, hosted by the United States, was won by Costa Rica who beat Guatemala 2–1 at the final in Los Angeles. The next two Copa Centroamericana competitions will be held in 2016 and 2017.

History[edit]

Due to the success of the Costa Rica national football team at the 1990 FIFA World Cup and the approaching 1994 FIFA World Cup to be hosted in the United States, the CONCACAF Congress in Kingston, Jamaica decided to stage a continental championship itself; the CONCACAF Gold Cup was ratified on August 18, 1990.[1] Costa Rica were given a bye into the competition due to its first place placing at the 1989 CONCACAF Championship, which also served as a qualification phase for the World Cup hosted by Italy.[1] However, due to mainly economic reasons, the United States were chosen as the venue for the continental tournament.[2]

During that same conference, the qualification format for the Central American associations were also decided on.[1] The final qualification round of the Central American zone had two bids: the United States and Costa Rica.[2] Costa Rica, now three-time CONCACAF champions and to celebrate their anniversary of the nation's World Cup performance by its team, was named by CONCACAF and UNCAF as the host country of the inaugural UNCAF Nations Cup tournament on February 19, 1991.[3]

Results[edit]

Year Host Final Third place match
Champion Score Runner-Up Third Place Score Fourth Place
1991  Costa Rica
Costa Rica
RR
Honduras

Guatemala
RR
El Salvador
1993  Honduras
Honduras
RR
Costa Rica

Panama
RR
El Salvador
1995  El Salvador
Honduras
3 – 0
Guatemala

El Salvador
2 – 1
Costa Rica
1997  Guatemala
Costa Rica
RR
Guatemala

El Salvador
RR
Honduras
1999  Costa Rica
Costa Rica
RR
Guatemala

Honduras
RR
El Salvador
2001  Honduras
Guatemala
RR
Costa Rica

El Salvador
RR
Panama
2003  Panama
Costa Rica
RR
Guatemala

El Salvador
RR
Honduras
2005  Guatemala
Costa Rica
1 – 1
7–6
pens

Honduras

Guatemala
3 – 0
Panama
2007  El Salvador
Costa Rica
1 – 1
4–1
pens

Panama

Guatemala
1 – 0
El Salvador
2009  Honduras
Panama
0 – 0
5–3
pens

Costa Rica

Honduras
1 – 0
El Salvador
2011  Panama
Honduras
2 – 1
Costa Rica

Panama
0 – 0
5–4
pens

El Salvador
2013  Costa Rica
Costa Rica
1 – 0
Honduras

El Salvador
1 – 0
Belize
2014  United States
Costa Rica
2 – 1
Guatemala

Panama
1 – 0
El Salvador
  1. ^ Placings decided on a round-robin basis.

Teams reaching the top four[edit]

Team Titles Runner-up Third place Fourth place
 Costa Rica 8 (1991*, 1997, 1999*, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2013*, 2014) 4 (1993, 2001, 2009, 2011) 1 (1995)
 Honduras 3 (1993*, 1995, 2011) 3 (1991, 2005, 2013) 2 (1999, 2009) 2 (1997, 2003)
 Guatemala 1 (2001) 5 (1995, 1997*, 1999, 2003, 2014) 3 (3 (1991, 2005, 2007)
 Panama 1 (2009) 1 (2007) 3 (1993, 2011*, 2014) 2 (2001, 2005)
 El Salvador 5 (1995*, 1997, 2001, 2003, 2013) 7 (1991, 1993, 1999, 2007*, 2009, 2011, 2014)
 Belize 1 (2013)
 Nicaragua
*=hosts

Records and Statistics[edit]

Historic[edit]

  • From 1991–2014

Last updated September 16, 2014

Pos. Team P W T L F A D
1  Costa Rica 56 35 13 8 105 36 +69
2  Honduras 55 30 11 14 101 46 +55
3  Guatemala 51 23 14 14 63 48 +15
4  El Salvador 58 20 13 25 57 68 –11
5  Panama 47 18 12 17 52 50 +2
6  Nicaragua 39 4 4 31 24 105 –81
7  Belize 28 1 5 22 18 71 –53

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Torneo de Naciones de CONCACAF: Costa Rica busca la ratificacion de sede" [CONCACAF Nations Cup: Costa Rica looks for ratification on host bid] (Web). La Nación (in Spanish). January 25, 1991. p. 39A. Retrieved October 13, 2014. 
  2. ^ a b "En Julio Copa de Naciones" [Nations Cup in July] (Web). La Nación (in Spanish). January 27, 1991. p. 42A. Retrieved October 13, 2014. 
  3. ^ "Torneo de Naciones Inicia el 26 de Mayo" [Nations Cup starts May 26] (Web). La Nación (in Spanish). February 20, 1991. p. 29A. Retrieved October 13, 2014. 

External links[edit]