25.09.2020 20:22 h

Suspended Trinidad & Tobago included in Gold Cup draw: CONCACAF

Trinidad & Tobago will be included in next week's draw for the 2021 Gold Cup despite the country's suspension by world governing body FIFA, CONCACAF said Friday.

A statement from the regional body for football in North America, Central America and the Caribbean (CONCACAF) said the federation would take a wait-and-see approach before deciding whether Trinidad & Tobago would compete in the tournament.

If FIFA's suspension remained in force up to December 18, 2020, Trinidad & Tobago would be replaced in the preliminary draw by Antigua and Barbuda.

FIFA suspended Trinidad and Tobago on Thursday for "grave violations" of its statutes following a local court challenge to its imposition of a new committee, following serious mismanagement.

It was the latest chapter of a turbulent relationship between FIFA and the Caribbean island nation's football authorities.

In May, Swiss prosecutors opened a fresh investigation which marked the latest in a string of allegations involving Trinidad's long-serving FIFA official Jack Warner.

The former FIFA vice president, who has been banned from football for life, is battling extradition to the United States to face charges of racketeering and conspiracy as part of a global graft probe into world football's governing body.

The Swiss investigation targeted former FIFA chief Sepp Blatter for suspected criminal mismanagement of funds over a decade-old $1 million payment.

The probe is connected with a loan FIFA gave to the TTFA in 2010, which was given interest-free, with no collateral, and was quickly forgiven as a "subsidy", a document seen by AFP showed.