The world football governing body (FIFA) on Friday confirmed on its website that the 2020 U-20 Women’s World Cup would be hosted by Central American duo of Costa Rica and Panama.
The news will come as a big blow to the Nigeria Football Federation who had hoped to win the hosting rights following the visit of FIFA officials to the country in August for inspection.
Nigeria showed interest in hosting the tournament, but the world football governing body wasn’t totally satisfied with the state of facilities during their inspection visit to the country.
But the federation remained hopeful with the US Soccer revealing on its official website in November that Nigeria would host the rest of the world for the Championship next year.
“The next FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup – to be held in Nigeria — will be the 10th world championship tournament contested at this age level,” US Soccer wrote on its website.
“The USA has participated in the previous nine (the first two being held as U19 tournaments) and has won it three times, finishing third once and fourth twice, while painfully exiting the tournament on penalty kicks three times.
“Should the USA qualify through the Concacaf tournament early next year, it’s likely several future full team stars will be on display in Africa.”
However, FIFA revealed that the Bureau of the FIFA Council has confirmed that the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup 2020 will be played in August in Costa Rica and Panama.
“We would like to thank the Costa Rican and Panamanian football associations for their commitment towards women’s football and the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in particular. We are looking forward to a fantastic competition in August,” said FIFA’s Chief Tournaments and Events Officer Colin Smith.
“After the highly successful FIFA Women’s World Cup in France this year, it is important that we build on the momentum at all levels of the game. The U20 WWC in Costa Rica and Panama next year is a perfect opportunity for us to continue driving the popularity of the game and with it being the first jointly hosted tournament – we can make the impact even greater,” said Sarai Bareman, FIFA’s Chief Women’s Football Officer.
The 16 participating teams will be divided into four groups of four with the best two of each group advancing to the quarter finals. This will be the first ever co-hosting of a FIFA youth tournament and the second co-hosting of a FIFA tournament since the 2002 FIFA World Cup Korea/Japan.