Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
Crucial matches on tap for MLS representatives
by Ridge Mahoney, September 24th, 2013 12:49AM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

MOST READ
TAGS:  concacaf champions league, mls

MOST COMMENTED

[CONCACAF CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Week 5] Of the three MLS teams involved in group play in the Concacaf Champions League this week, only Montreal has but a scant chance to advance.

The Galaxy (2-0-0) leads Group 8 and Houston (1-0-1) can take over the Group 1 lead by winning, but the Impact (1-2-0) needs a big victory in its Group 5 match against Guatemalan club Heredia Tuesday at Stade Saputo to keep its hopes alive.

Eight group winners advance to the quarterfinals, which will be played in February and March of next year. A final round of group games for some teams -- including the other two MLS entries, San Jose and Sporting Kansas City -- will be played next month.

MONTREAL IMPACT vs. HEREDIA (8 p.m. ET, Univision Deportes). The Impact led the MLS Eastern Conference for a while but has since struggled with inconsistency, and is coming into its final group game off a discouraging 3-0 home loss to Vancouver. In CCL play it has beaten San Jose, 1-0, lost by the same score away to Heredia, and suffered a 3-0 loss in San Jose last week.

Its only chance to reach the quarterfinals is to beat Heredia (2-0-0) impressively -- say by six goals -- to improve its current goal difference of minus-3, and then hope San Jose (1-2-0) also beats Heredia but narrowly. Those results would leave the teams tied with six points apiece, and three-team tiebreakers -- goal difference and then away goals -- would be used to separate them.

“[The players] know that the message is clear: We are going to win this game,” said coachMarco Schaellibaum told mlssoccer.com. “We have to go all in. We have a small chance and we’ll try everything to take it.”

Defender Hassoun Camara has scored Montreal’s only CCL goal. His header from a Hernan Bernardello free kick in the 16th minute downed the Quakes. Backup keeper Evan Bush stopped an Alan Gordon penalty kick to highlight a shutout performance.

The Impact has a crucial league match looming Saturday in Chicago so Schallibaum is expected to rest most of his starters. Montreal romped over Houston, 5-0, in a league match Aug. 24, and crushed Toronto FC, 6-0, in May during the Canadian qualifying tournament for this competition, so the firepower is certainly available.

HOUSTON DYNAMO vs. W CONNECTION FC (Wednesday, 8 p.m. ET, Fox Sports 2).Houston comes into its penultimate CCL group game in good form, having thrashed Chivas USA, 5-1, Saturday a week after edging past Philadelphia, 1-0, on the road.

Though it trails Arabe Unido (2-1-0) by two points, Houston can leapfrog into first place by beating W Connection, and then would need only a tie in the group finale next month in Panama to reach the quarterfinals. The Dynamo opened its CCL campaign last month by tying W Connection, 0-0, in Port of Spain, then beat Arabe Unido at home, 2-1, with a pair of goals by Cam Weaver.

That game produced seven cautions, four of them to Houston players, and this game could be rugged, since W Connection (0-2-1) cannot advance and has no reason to play cautiously. The Dynamo escaped in Port of Spain when striker Neil Benjaminsquandered a pair of late chances, one of them coming back off the post, and it labored to break down a massed defense.

CARTAGINES vs. LOS ANGELES GALAXY (Wednesday, 10 p.m., Fox Soccer Plus).The Galaxy can wrap up Group 8 with a game to spare just by getting a tie at the Estadio Nacional in San Jose, Costa Rica. (Cartagines’ home stadium in Cartago was deemed substandard by Concacaf.)

Cartagines (1-1-1) heads into its final group game in second place and must win to keep its chances alive. Robbie Keane scored both goals as the Galaxy opened its CCL schedule Aug. 20 by beating Cartagines, 2-0, at StubHub Center, and Laurent Courtois tallied last week in a 1-0 defeat of Isidro Metapan.

ForwardRandall Brenes came on as a late sub in Costa Rica’s 3-1 defeat of the USA in a Hexagonal qualifier Sept. 5. Pablo Herrera Barrantes and Andres Floreseach scored twice in Cartagines’ 4-2 defeat of Isidro Metapan in the group opener Aug. 20.

Head coach Bruce Arena has used his squad’s depth to play a lot of backups in the team’s two CCL games to date, and will likely do so again after a draining 1-1 league match against Seattle Saturday night. Brian Rowehas been in goal for both shutouts and veteran midfielder Pablo Mastroeni – like Courtois, a midseason acquisition – has also started the CCL games.

“It’s going to be a completely different game, with different issues than we deal with on a week-to-week basis in MLS,” Mastroeni toldlagalaxy.com. “Obviously very skillful individuals all over the field and playing at home is going to be a big plus for them. For us it’s really important to come out and start real bright and do what we can to impose ourselves on them.”

Landon Donovan, who missed the Seattle game with an ankle injury, will be traveling to Costa Rica.

CCLWEEK 5: Schedule
Tuesday, September 24
Cruz Azul (MEX) vs. Valencia (HAI)
Montreal Impact vs. Heredia (GUA)
Olimpia (HON) vs. Real Esteli (NCA)
Wednesday, September 25
Houston Dynamo vs. DIRECTV W Connection (TRI)
Cartagines (CRC) vs. LA Galaxy
Comunicaciones (GUA) vs. Caledonia AIA (TRI)
Thursday, September 26
Alajuelense (CRC) vs. Sporting San Miguelito (PAN)
Tijuana (MEX) vs. Victoria (HON)
---------------------------------------------------------------------
CCL STANDINGS:
Group 1: Arabe Unido 6 points; Houston Dynamo 4; DirecTV W Connection 1.
Group 2: Sporting Kansas City 7 points; Olimpia 3; Real Esteli 1.
Group 3:Cruz Azul, Herediano 6 points; Valencia 0.
Group 4:Club America 6 points; Sporting San Miguelito, Alajuelense 3.
Group 5: Heredia 6 points; San Jose Earthquakes, Montreal Impact 3.
Group 6: Toluca 9 points, Comunicaciones 3; Caledonia AIA 0.
Group 7:Tijuana 7 points; Luis Angel Firpo 4; Victoria 0.
Group 8: LA Galaxy 6 points; Cartagines 4; Isidro Metapan 1.
---------------------------------------------------------------------
CCLWEEK 4: Results
Thursday, September 19
DIRECTV W Connection (TRI) 0 Arabe Unido (PAN) 2
Luis Angel Firpo (SLV) vs. Victoria (HON)
Wednesday, September 18
LA Galaxy 1 Isidro Metapan (SLV) 0
Caledonia AIA (TRI) 1 Toluca (MEX) 5
Herediano (CRC) 4 Valencia FC (HAI) 2
Tuesday, September 17
Sporting Kansas City 1 Real Esteli (NCA) 1
San Jose Earthquakes 3 Montreal Impact 0
Club America (MEX) 3 Sporting San Miguelito (PAN) 0

CCLWEEK 3, Results:
Thursday, August 29
Caledonia AIA (TRI) 0 Comunicaciones (GUA) 3
Alajuelense (CRC) 1 Club America (MEX) 0
Wednesday, August 28
Valencia (HAI) 1 Cruz Azul (MEX) 2
Heredia (GUA) 1 San Jose Earthquakes 0
Tijuana (MEX) 1 Luis Angel Firpo (SLV) 0
Tuesday, August 27
Houston Dynamo 2 Arabe Unido (PAN) 1
Olimpia (HON) 0 Sporting Kansas City 2
Cartagines (CRC) 0 Isidro Metapan (SLV) 0

CCLWEEK 2: Results
Thursday, August 22
Cruz Azul (MEX) 3 Herediano (CRC) 0
Comunicaciones (GUA) 1 Toluca (MEX) 2
Sporting San Miguelito (PAN) 1 Alajuelense (CRC) 0
Wednesday, August 21
Heredia (GUA) 1 Montreal Impact 0
Real Esteli (NCA) 0 Olimpia (HON) 1
Tuesday, August 20
DIRECTV W Connection (TRI) 0 Houston Dynamo 0
LA Galaxy 2 Cartagines (CRC) 0
Victoria (HON)  2 Tijuana (MEX) 3

CCLWEEK 1: Results
Thursday, August 8
Valencia FC (HAI) 1 Herediano (CRC) 6
Isidro Metapan (SLV) 2 Cartagines (CRC) 4
Arabe Unido (PAN) 3 DIRECTV W Connection (TRI) 1
Wednesday, August 7
Montreal Impact 1 San Jose Earthquakes 0
Sporting San Miguelito (PAN) 0 Club America (MEX) 1
Real Esteli (NCA) 0 Sporting Kansas City 2
Tuesday, August 6
Toluca (MEX) 3 Caledonia AIA (TRI) 1
Luis Angel Firpo (SLV) 0 Tijuana (MEX) 0
---------------------------------------------------------------------
CCLWEEK 6: Schedule
Tuesday, October 22
Club America (MEX) vs. Alajuelense (CRC)
Herediano (CRC) vs. Cruz Azul (MEX)
Wednesday, October 23
Sporting Kansas City vs. Olimpia (HON)
Toluca FC (MEX) vs. Comunicaciones (GUA)
San Jose Earthquakes vs. Heredia (GUA)
Victoria (HON) vs. Luis Angel Firpo (SLV)
Thursday, October 24
Arabe Unido (PAN) vs. Houston Dynamo
Isidro Metapan (SLV) vs. LA Galaxy


No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
Video Pick: Trump features in Argentine Copa Centenario ad    
Argentine TV station TyC Sports has used Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump's "border wall" speech in ...
Video Pick: Leo Messi takes on giant robot keeper    
You've seen how routinely Lionel Messi beats human goalkeepers. Now, thanks to a Japanese game show, ...
USL Rewind: MLS expansion candidates drawing well    
Sacramento, San Antonio and Cincinnati have all been mentioned in recent weeks as MLS expansion candidates, ...
NWSL Rewind: Spirit makes it three in a row    
Despite a change in coach, the Washington Spirit is off to the best start in the ...
NASL Rewind: Big win for Cosmos before small crowd    
NASL defending champion New York Cosmos ended a two-game losing streak with a 1-0 win over ...
Futsal: U.S. names Concacaf Championship roster    
U.S. coach Keith Tozer has named a 14-man roster for the Concacaf Futsal Championship in San ...
Video Pick: Top MLS golazos of Week 9    
In perhaps the most impressive collection of MLS Goal of the Week nominees this season, Week ...
What They're Saying: Lionel Messi dietitian Giuliano Poser    
"The human mind is like a parachute. It only works when it's open." -- Lionel Messi ...
What They're Saying: Ukraine's Taras Stepanenko    
"I'd like the whole country to know my friendship with Yarmolenko has ended." -- Shakhtar Donetsk's ...
Bobby Wood, the USA's top summer target    
The most sought-after striker in the German second division is American Bobby Wood, who has scored ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives