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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
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FIFA has changed the U-19 Championship to U-20, starting with the 2006 tournament, to be hosted by Russia. There will be 16 teams instead of 12, as follows:

Host Russia qualifies automatically
Europe gets an additional 4 spots.
CONCACAF gets 3
Asia gets 3
Africa gets 2
South America gets 2
Oceania gets 1

Final tournament will be held August 17 to September 3, 2006, in four stadiums in Moscow (Dinamo, Lokomotiv, Shelkovo and Torpedo) and one in St. Petersburg (Petrovsky). Schedule (.pdf file)
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
CONCACAF's 3 qualifiers will be determined in an 8-team tournament in Mexico, January 18-27, 2006.

Group A
MEXICO
CANADA
PANAMA
TRINIDAD & TOBAGO

Group B
EL SALVADOR
USA
SURINAM
JAMAICA

Top 2 in each group will progress to semifinals. Three of them will go to the FIFA event in Russia next summer.

Update: Canada v. Jamaica and USA v. Mexico in semifinals, January 25.

Update: Canada v. USA in Final January 27 (both have qualified for the finals in Russia); Mexico v. Jamaica will meet in the third-place match.

Update: Mexico beat Jamaica, so the three CONCACAF qualifiers are Canada, USA, and Mexico.
 

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Jeff said:
CONCACAF's 3 qualifiers will be determined in an 8-team tournament in Mexico, January 18-27, 2006.

Group A
MEXICO
CANADA
PANAMA
TRINIDAD & TOBAGO

Group B
UNCAF Triangular 2 winner (to be determined very soon)
USA
SURINAM
JAMAICA

Top 2 in each group will progress to semifinals. Three of them will go to the FIFA event in Russia next summer.

How do you get three teams qualifying from 4 semi-finalists?? :confused:
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The semifinal winners will qualify.

The semifinal losers will meet in the Third Place match; winner goes to Russia, loser stays home.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Oceania's qualifying tournament will take place in Samoa, April 1-15, 2006.

As of January 1, 2006, Australia moves to the Asian confederation (AFC), so New Zealand finally has a chance to qualify! :tongue:

Group A
Vanuatu
Tonga
New Zealand
New Caledonia
Solomon Islands

Group B
Fiji
Papua New Guinea
Tahiti
Samoa
Cook Islands
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
The AFC (Asian confederation) will hold a preliminary tournament March 1 to 9, 2006 with the final qualifying tournament to be held April 8 to 18, 2006, in Malaysia.

Update, March 12: The teams in the final qualifying tournament in Malaysia will be:

Group A
South Korea
North Korea
Japan
India

Group B
China
Malaysia
Jordan
Australia

Three teams will qualify to play in Russia.

Update April 18: The three qualifiers are China, Australia, and North Korea.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
The preliminary rounds of the African qualifiers will take place from March 5 to May 14, 2006.

Semi-finals end on May 15, 2006
Nigeria v. Liberia
South Africa v. DR Congo

Final: June 11, 2006: Nigeria v. DR Congo

The two finalists Nigeria and DR Congo will advance to the U-20 World Cup in Russia.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
The CONMEBOL tournament will be held in Chile in January, 2006.

Preliminary round January 4 to 13; playoffs (top 2 from each Group) Jan. 16 to 20.

Group A (at Viña del Mar)
Venezuela
Chile
Brazil
Peru
Uruguay

Group B (at Valparaíso)
Argentina
Colombia
Ecuador
Paraguay
Bolivia

Two countries will qualify.

UPDATE: Brazil and Argentina have qualified.
 

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Poor Aussies... for the men's team it's probably an advantage they moved to Asia, but that can't be said for all Australia-teams, I wonder or they'll qualify now.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Updating the list of qualifiers so far:

Host: Russia
UEFA: Germany, France, Finland, Switzerland
CONCACAF: Canada, USA, Mexico
CONMEBOL: Brazil, Argentina

to come:
AFC: 3
CAF: 2
Oceania: 1
 

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Discussion Starter #13
To nobody's surprise, New Zealand will represent Oceania, having beaten Tonga 7-0 in the qualifying final.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Final list of qualifiers:

Host: Russia
UEFA: Germany, France, Finland, Switzerland
CONCACAF: Canada, USA, Mexico
CONMEBOL: Brazil, Argentina
AFC: China, Australia, North Korea
Oceania: New Zealand
CAF: Nigeria, DR Congo
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
The draw and schedule:

Group A
August 17
New Zealand v. Australia
Russia v. Brazil
August 20
Brazil v. Australia
Russia v. New Zealand
August 23
Brazil v. New Zealand
Australia v. Russia

Group B
August 17
China v. Finland
Nigeria v. Canada
August 20
Finland v. Canada
China v. Nigeria
August 23
Finland v. Nigeria
Canada v. China

Group C
August 18
Switzerland v. Mexico
North Korea v. Germany
August 21
Mexico v. Germany
Switzerland v. North Korea
August 24
Germany v. Switzerland
Mexico v. North Korea

Group D
August 18
DR Congo v. USA
France v. Argentina
August 21
USA v. Argentina
DR Congo v. France
August 24
Argentina v. DR Congo
USA v. France

Quarterfinals
August 26
1. Group A winner v. Group B runner-up
2. Group B winner v. Group A runner-up
August 27
3. Group C winner v. Group D runner-up
4. Group D winner v. Group C runner-up

Semifinals
August 31
QF1 winner v. QF3 winner
QF2 winner v. QF4 winner

Third Place match and Final
September 3

Reaction to the Draw
 

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Discussion Starter #16
In Group B friendly action, Canada beat Finland 2-0 today in Finland.

The teams will meet again on June 8.
 

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Who´s the big favourite for winning the title, Jeff?

USA as most of time, or does other countries
have superb U19 teams?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I don't know what the conventional wisdom is, but I would pick the USA if I were betting...

...but watch out for Germany and Canada.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Jeff said:
In Group B friendly action, Canada beat Finland 2-0 today in Finland.

The teams will meet again on June 8.
The June 8 result was the same, 0-2 for Canada.
 
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