Saint Kitts and Nevis have quietly been one of the more prominent forces in Caribbean football lately.
They made waves during Concacaf World Cup Qualifying for Qatar 2022 by topping their First-Round group over Caribbean heavyweights Trinidad and Tobago, with the cinderella run ending in the Second Round to El Salvador over two legs.
Now on the back of an undefeated Nations League C campaign, the Sugar Boyz are in their first ever Concacaf Gold Cup.
Defeating Trinidad and Tobago during World Cup qualifying was a signature win over one of the big boys of Caribbean football, and now Saint Kitts and Nevis will have an opportunity to repeat that feat when they square off against Curacao on the tournament’s opening night.
Saint Kitts and Nevis proved in the Nations League that they are much more a collective than a team powered by one or two stars. Saint Kitts and Nevis finished with a 3W-1D-0L record in the group, the lone blemish being a 1-1 home draw against Saint Martin.
The team’s nine goals were scored by eight different players, and the defensive contributions were spread around just as much. Keithroy Freeman was the lone man with two goals, adding to the four he bagged during World Cup qualification.
Romaine Sawyers, a midfielder who plies his trade at Cardiff City in the English Championship, is the biggest name of the bunch, but watching the Sugar Boyz play will instill you with a belief that the next big play could come from anyone, anywhere.
There have been peaks and valleys, but Saint Kitts and Nevis have been on an upward trajectory for several years now, and with just two games between them and the Gold Cup proper, the top of the mountain is finally in sight.
Their first preliminary match is set to be played in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on June 16 against Curacao. The winner will advance to play the winner of French Guiana and Sint Maarten for the final place in Group D.