The Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football(CONCACAF), which was founded in 1961, is the organizing body of soccer in this part of the world. It is comprised of 34 national associations, spanning from Canada in the north to Guyana in the south.

CONCACAF organizes international competition in two club championships -- the CONCACAF Champions Cup, which is the CONCACAF club championship, and the CONCACAF Cup Winners' Cup, which is for teams that win their national association's cup title. There is also a women's championship, veterans' tournament, two youth championships, qualifying tournaments for all FIFA competitions and, of course, the Gold Cup.

The Gold Cup is CONCACAF's showpiece event. Contested every two years, it determines the Confederation's finest national team. In 1993, Mexico defeated defending champion United States in the final, 4-0, before a crowd of 130,800 at Mexico City's Azteca Stadium, to win its first Gold Cup. In 1991, the U.S. captured the inaugural competition, overcoming Honduras at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

Last year, CONCACAF joined Europe and South America as the only Confederations to host three or more World Cup finals. Mexico welcomed the world twice, in 1970 and 1986, while the United States staged the event for the first time.

CONCACAF has a history of stability and growth. This is illustrated by the fact that the prior administration was in place for 28 of the Confederation's first 29 years of existence. In April of 1990, following a shift in the political balance of its membership, the CONCACAF Congress, which convened in Guatemala, elected Trinidad & Tobago's Jack Warner as president.

Chuck Blazer, of the United States, was then appointed by the CONCACAF Executive Committee to the position of general secretary. Simultaneously, a decision was made to move the headquarters from Guatemala City to New York City.

While administrative functions may have shifted to the United States, CONCACAF maintains satellite offices in Guatemala City and Port of Spain, Trinidad. From each of those locations, dedicated staff help to administer the regional duties of the secretariat.

The 19th CONCACAF Congress, held on April 23, 1994 and hosted by the United States Soccer Federation in New York City, was highlighted by the unopposed re-election of Warner to CONCACAF's presidency.

This event signified the membership's satisfaction with the way in which the new administration conducted its business and reaffirmed the commitment made to Warner four years earlier.

Since its election, the leadership has upgraded CONCACAF's competitions and technical programs, so that the future can bring many more benefits to its membership and all fans of soccer in the region.

Scott Gleba
CONCACAF Press Officer

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