Ticos, T&T book Egypt berths
© AFP

Trinidad and Tobago, hosts of the 2009 CONCACAF U-20 Championship, had the opportunity to take it easy in their final Group B game against Mexico on 11 March. Costa Rica's 2-1 win over Canada in the day's earlier game in Macoya made sure that both the Ticos and the Trinidadians will be taking part in the FIFA U-20 World Cup Egypt 2009.

The Costa Ricans rode a late winner from Marcos Urena to beat Canada, and ended up with seven points from their three group games. The result also meant that Trinidad, coached by Zoran Vranes and on four points at the opening whistle of their later game (eventually ending a 2-2 draw), were unable to be caught out by the Canadians (3 points) and Mexico, their opponent in the group's final game, were already eliminated after two straight losses.

Egypt 2009 will be Costa Rica's second straight world youth finals (they went out in the group stages of Canada 2007). Coached by Ronald Gonzalez, and with a raft of talented players in the side, they may well be a team to watch at the tournament, which runs from 24 September to 16 October. Trinidad and Tobago, for their part, have only ever taken part in one other U-20 finals, in Portugal in 1991.

The pair join up with USA and Honduras, who both qualified as Group A winners and runners-up respectively on 10 March, as North, Central American and Caribbean zone combatants in Egypt.

The 24-team field is now complete with Australia, Korea Republic, UAE and Uzbekistan representing Asia, African giants Cameroon, Nigeria, Ghana and South Africa coming in from the mother continent. Europe will roll to Egypt with Czech Republic, England, Germany, Hungary, Italy and perennial favourites Spain. Surprise packages Tahiti will represent Oceania while Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and Venezuela come in from South America and Egypt qualify automatically as hosts.