With an historic third-place finish at the Concacaf Nations League now out the way, Jamaica’s senior Reggae Boyz Head coach Heimir Hallgrimsson is hoping they can ride the momentum to an even bigger accomplishment, which is to qualify for the 2026 FIFA World Cup.

Though Hallgrimsson would have preferred the 2023/24 CNL title, as opposed to the bronze they secured with a 1-0 win over Panama, he believes the achievement represents a step in the right direction on their quest to add to the country’s 1998 World Cup feat.

“This is just a part of our journey. We were trying to build something for this tournament as there is a saying that ‘success is not a destination, success is not a date, it’s a continuous journey to the right direction’. So, we’re just working on improving this team, as our biggest goal at the moment is to try to reach the World Cup finals,” Hallgrimsson declared. 

Jamaica’s third-place battle followed a heartbreaking 3-1 extra-time loss to United States in an entertaining semi-final contest that they led from the very first minute, but lost after Corey Burke’s last-gasped own-goal brought the opponents back into the game.

Still, Hallgrimsson took the positives from the tournament, as he pointed to the psychologically importance and confidence gained heading into the prestigious CONMEBOL Copa America, which also serves as part of the Reggae Boyz preparation for the World Cup qualifiers.

“This is a good step to play important matches, to play big tournaments, and to play strong opponents like the United States and Panama. They are two of the three highest-ranked Concacaf teams and we showed that we are closing in on this gap, even with the number of players not with us. So, I have to give a lot of credit to the players for the way they presented themselves for Jamaica,” Hallgrimsson said.