As the United States reflects on World Cup failure, Jack Warner has called the team's defeat to Trindad & Tobago "the happiest day of my life."
The controversial former CONCACAF president, who is a T&T native, claims he was ready to party after seeing the U.S. reduced to a "laughing stock."
A 2-1 reversal in its final qualification fixture, along with a 2-1 win for Panama over Costa Rica and 3-2 victory for Honduras against Mexico, has left the U.S. facing its first absence from football’s global showpiece since 1986.
A "ghost goal" for Panama and testing conditions in its own game conspired against Bruce Arena's side, but Warner is positively revelling in the demise of a once dominant force in the region.
"I have not been in better spirits. This is the happiest day of my life," he told reporters.
"It [the win] couldn't have given me greater joy."
Warner, a former FIFA vice president who is currently fighting extradition to the U.S. amid a crackdown in corruption in sport, added: "And for me personally, it has reduced the U.S. to a laughing stock.
“Last Sept. 27 when the judge ruled against Jack Warner there was a party in the U.S., they were quite happy.
"Knowing that this has happened I wanted to go out and party as they partied last September when a judge ruled against me. I wanted to party. This was my personal feeling."
Warner has also warned that failure to reach Russia 2018 could be just the start for the U.S., with its troubles set to continue as the federation hits a slippery slope.
He added: "They will continue to undermine [the World Cup in] Qatar for 2022, but they will not succeed. As far as I am concerned this is the beginning of the end for U.S. football.
"Nobody in CONCACAF likes the U.S."
Had the U.S. been able to avoid defeat against T&T, then the Americans would be heading to next summer's World Cup, as even a draw would have sealed automatic qualification.
As it is, the team's actions prior to the final round of games left its opponent — which had nothing but pride to play for — determined to claim a prized scalp and dash the American dream.
T&T assistant coach Stern John told USA Today on the motivation for his players: "I think they were a bit overconfident and a bit disrespectful because they came in and rain fell on the pitch and they were giving each other piggybacks [over the water] and all kind of stuff.
"Rain fell, it is not our fault. They made a big scene out of it and it was international news all over the world. It was all over the media.
"Our families [told us about it]. Most of our guys are on social media so they see it. They see the USA guys getting piggybacked to the field — it is embarrassing."