USVI finishes with Two Losses in Inaugural Nations League Play

Kassall Greene controls the ball for the Virgin Islands in a recent loss against the Cayman Islands.
Kassall Greene controls the ball for the Virgin Islands in a recent loss against the Cayman Islands.

There is only one way to go for Virgin Islands Soccer and that is up after the team cemented a last place finish in its group in the lowest division during the first season of CONCACAF Nations League.

The V.I. lost on the road to the Cayman Islands, 1-0, on Saturday night before dropping their last game, 2-1, at home to St. Martin on Tuesday to close out group play.

The Virgin Islands were the only last place team in League C to eke out a win as the British Virgin Islands, Anguilla and St. Martin all left the competition winless.

The CONCACAF Nations League was set up so that countries could play more competitive games in the region and give smaller teams a chance to earn the right to play the higher-ranked teams in the region.

The USVI was drawn into Group A of League C of the initial CONCACAF Nations League and played home and away series with Barbados, St. Martin and the Cayman Islands and only won one game over the course of the six matches. The win was a 2-1 decision over St. Martin on Sept. 8.

Barbados and the Cayman Islands both finished with 12 points, but Barbados will advance to League B for next season because its goal differential, the first tiebreaker, of plus 10, is higher than the Cayman Islands which, despite winning four games had a goal differential of -1.

The other teams making the jump to League B next year will be the Bahamas, Guatemala and Guadeloupe.

Last place teams in League B that will be members of League C next year will be Dominica, Aruba, St. Lucia and St. Kitts and Nevis.

The teams advancing to the highest division next year after first place finishes in League B will be Grenada, El Salvador, Jamaica and Suriname while Haiti, Trinidad and Tobago, Bermuda and Cuba will be playing in League B after last place finishes in their respective groups in League A.

The CONCACAF Nations League Champions will be decided in June between the United States, Mexico, Costa Rica and Honduras as they all advanced to the semifinal stage by virtue of first place finishes in the groups in League A.

The CONCACAF Nations League was also set up to change the regional championship, The Gold Cup, qualifying process.

The United States, Canada, Mexico, Panama, Honduras, Martinique, Costa Rica, Curacao, Grenada, El Salvador, Jamaica and Suriname all earned spots in the tournament. The last four spots in the premier tournament are going to be decided between Barbados, Bahamas, Guatemala, French Guiana, Montserrat, Guyana, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Cuba, Bermuda, Trinidad and Tobago and Haiti after a playoff that will finish in June 2020.

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