Canada are the reigning Olympic champions in women's football ©Getty Images

The Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) has refreshed its international women's competitions - with a new W Gold Cup added to the calendar and the W Championship tweaked.

The changes are set to come into force from this year and will have an impact on the 2024 Olympics in Paris, chiefly as the W Championship will determine which sides from the CONCACAF region compete at the Games.

The winner will qualify directly for Paris 2024, while the teams finishing second and third will contest a play-in game for the final spot.

Eight teams will play at the W Championship - first scheduled in 2022 - and the top two in each of the four-team groups will progress to the semi-finals and qualify for the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup.

The third-place finishers will additionally advance to the inter-continental playoffs for the 2023 Women's World Cup in Australia and New Zealand - the first to feature 32 teams.

W Championship knockout games will be one-legged and winning either the tournament or the Olympic play-in game will qualify a team for the W Gold Cup also.

The Paris 2024 play-in game has been scheduled for 2023.

For Tokyo 2020, a CONCACAF Women's Olympic Qualifying Championship allocated both berths.

In June 2024 - the month before the Olympic Games in Paris are due to begin - the inaugural W Gold Cup is scheduled to be played, with 12 teams forming three groups.

Four of those teams will be guests from other regions.

Group winners, runners-up, and the two best third-place finishers will qualify for the three-round knockout stage.

CONCACAF is to stage the first W Gold Cup in 2024 ©CONCACAF
CONCACAF is to stage the first W Gold Cup in 2024 ©CONCACAF

CONCACAF is labelling the W Gold Cup as its flagship tournament for women.

Qualification will begin in 2023, while qualification for the W Championship is due to start in November.

The United States and Canada - who competed at Tokyo 2020, with Canada winning gold and the US bronze - are already assured of their places at the tournament.

The W Championship is a re-branding of the CONCACAF Women's Championship, the last two editions of which were won by the US on home turf.

Hosts for the upcoming tournaments have not yet been announced.

"This is a seismic development for our women’s national team competitions and will transform the women’s game in CONCACAF," President Victor Montagliani said. 

"When we launched our CONCACAF W strategy in 2019, we committed to providing more opportunities for all member associations. 

"This new ecosystem wholeheartedly delivers on that and the inclusion of an inaugural CONCACAF W Gold Cup as a central part of it is a truly exciting step in our journey to further elevate women’s football."