ST JOHN'S, Antigua (CMC):
President of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU), Gordon 'Banks' Derrick, says he is pleased with the performance of the four countries in the region to have qualified for the CONCACAF Gold Cup in the US next July.
Cuba, Trinidad, Haiti and Martinique will represent the region in the prestigious summer event after securing the top four places in the recent CFU Cup in Antigua.
The CFU has reported major challenges in hosting this year's event, including disappointing crowd support and the lack of a major tournament sponsor.
"This was our first time hosting the tournament since the changes the CFU have gone through and we had some challenges but it was a learning process for us," said Derrick.
"This is just the start of better things for the Caribbean Football Union. This tournament, among other things, will continue to grow and get better."
Cuba edged former champions Trinidad and Tobago 1-0 to win the Caribbean Cup for the first time earlier this month.
The Caribbean football chief also commended Trinidad for ending its slump in recent years at the regional tournament by reaching the final this year.
"I am happy for teams such as T&T. They made a rocky start in their first two games but they kept the fight and they demonstrated their class and experience over some of their other opponents to reach to the final and make their return to the Gold Cup," said Derrick.
"I am extremely happy about the four teams that will represent the CFU at the Gold Cup next year."