October 14, 2004

AskSpoFi: Why are Guyana and Surinam in CONCACAF?: These countries are in South America, so what's the 411? Guyana "is a tropical country situated on the northern coast of South America... bordered by Venezuela on the west, Suriname on the east, Brazil on the south and the Atlantic Ocean on the north." And "the Republic of Surinam is the second smallest country of the South American continent." I'm curious because Concacaf, including these two, has 32 squads while Conmebol only has 10 yet reference books list them as part of South America.

posted by billsaysthis to navel gazing at 12:33 PM - 8 comments

Good question, why is israel in UEFA, and Lebanon and Jordan who are right next door in freakin' AFC?! HUH?! HUH?!

posted by StarFucker at 12:54 PM on October 14, 2004

I suspect that both Guyana and Surinam identify themselves more with the Caribbean than with South America - especially as neither of them speak Spanish or Portugese. As for Israel, Azerbijian and the majority of Turkey being in UEFA, I suspect there is a lot more money in playing in the European Champion's League and playing Real Madrid, Manchester United and AC Milan rather than playing in the Asian Cup against Real Mumbai, Singapore United or AC Ho Chi Minh City. For some countries it seems to be more important about how they see themselves rather than their geographical location and UEFA is happy to give in if they are rich enough/a large enough potential market.

posted by Pete at 01:14 PM on October 14, 2004

Israel is in UEFA because the Arab nations would never agree to playing them regularly (or at all) in the AFC; hell it's illegal in some of these countries. Look at the one match in the Olympics where an Iranian athlete was matched against an Israeli.

posted by billsaysthis at 01:20 PM on October 14, 2004

I think billsaysthis nailed it.

posted by grum@work at 01:25 PM on October 14, 2004

I think Pete's probably got it right on the Suriname/Guyana thing, but if I happen to run into the Guyanese guy that lives below me and remember to think about it, I may ask him.

posted by Ufez Jones at 03:04 PM on October 14, 2004

Maybe its because Suriname and Guyana would stand a better chance of making it to the World Cup finals in CONCACAF (couldn't they come up with a better name than this?) than with letting them get punked out on a regular basis by the South American powerhouses. Oh, and it's no surprise that Israel is in UEFA. Could you imagine how hostile it would be for them to play in Damascus, Tehran, or Riyadh?

posted by jasonbondshow at 04:52 PM on October 14, 2004

bill definitely nailed it. Israel compete in Europe because those nasty Arabs wouldn't let them be in their gang.

posted by squealy at 06:12 PM on October 14, 2004

Israel used to be in Oceana. I think that uefa's a much better choice

posted by sauril at 12:41 PM on October 16, 2004

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