NICARAGUA | NCA
A founding member of Concacaf in 1961, the Nicaraguan Football Federation is beginning to see the fruits of its labor at the international level.
Nicaragua once again will compete in League B of the Concacaf Nations League, with seven points from six matches in Group B good enough to retain their spot, despite playing in a difficult group that featured Suriname, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Dominica.
In 2009, the senior men’s national team made a historic push to the Concacaf Gold Cup, securing the final spot from Central America and landing in the continental championship for the first time.
La Azul y Blanco were back in 2017, with Juan Barrera scoring a dramatic hat trick in six minutes to beat Haiti in a playoff between the 2017 Caribbean Cup fifth place team and their counterpart in the Copa Centroamericana.
While Nicaragua followed up the 2017 berth with spot in the 2019 tournament, they are still seeking their first-ever Gold Cup win.
Nicaragua also has an up-and-coming women’s national team program, bolstered by Real Estelí, a club with successful male and female squads, and UNAN Managua pushing for player development.
In addition to Real Estelí, which made the Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League in 2021, Walter Ferretti, Managua and Diriangen have taken part in the Scotiabank Concacaf League.