MLS clubs on verge of unprecedented exploit in CCL

The Seattle Sounders, LA Galaxy and D.C. United have clinched berths in the quarterfinals of the Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League, while Real Salt Lake's 2-1 comeback win over Santa Tecla from El Salvador leaves RSL needing only a tie against Municipal of Guatemala Oct. 20 at home to join them in the knockout stage. If RSL advances it would mark the first time all four of MLS's U.S. entrants have reached the CCL quarterfinals. Mexico's four entrants are all in good shape to advance.

The Seattle Sounders, LA Galaxy and D.C. United have clinched berths in the quarterfinals of the Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League, while Real Salt Lake's 2-1 comeback win over Santa Tecla from El Salvador leaves RSL needing only a tie against Municipal of Guatemala Oct. 20 at home to join them in the knockout stage.



If RSL advances it would mark the first time all four of MLS's U.S. entrants have reached the CCL quarterfinals. Of the four Mexican entrants, only Queretaro has clinched, but Club America, Santos and Tigres are all in good shape to advance. The quarterfinal placings will not be MLS vs. La Liga but based on the seeding of the eight teams, based on their record in the group stage.

U.S. Entrants in CCL:
W-L-T TEAM
3-0-1 D.C. United
2-0-1 Real Salt Lake
2-0-1 LA Galaxy
2-1-1 Seattle Sounders

Late goals from Olmes Garcia and Juan Manuel Martinez gave RSL the win over Santa Tecla, the Salvadoran champion making its first appearance in the CCL. Javier Morales assisted on both goals after coming into the match midway through the second half after Santa Tecla scored on its only shot on goal.

In the 73rd minute, Morales swung a ball in from the left side and Garcia rose above his defender to snap a header into the net for the goal to equalize at 1-1. Four minutes later, another substitute, Martinez, took a ball from Morales and chipped it past the oncoming Santa Tecla keeper Juan Trinidad for the winner.

RSL remained unbeaten with seven points in three games and will advance if it beats or ties Municipal, which it beat, 1-0, in Guatemala City. A Municipal win would give it the group title by every tiebreaker.

The only down note was Morales' hip injury he picked up after he came on.

"They are all professionals," said RSL coach Jeff Cassar. "They were all preparing like they were going to have to play. At the end of the day it's good that they got a workout in rather than having the day completely off. But we've got to make sure that Javi is OK right now. I don't think it's too bad. I think it's just tightened up, I don't think it pulled on him."

RSL faces a critical test in its hunt to get back in contention for an MLS playoff berth on Sunday, facing the San Jose Earthquakes at Avaya Stadium.

Sept. 24 in Sandy, Utah
Real Salt Lake 2 Santa Tecla 1. Goals: Garcia 73, Martinez 77; Herrera 61.
Real Salt Lake -- Attinella; Beltran, Vasquez, Maund, Mansally; Pecka (Morales, 65), Mulholland (Beckerman, 66), Gil; Plata, Jaime (Martinez, 72), Garcia.
Santa Tecla -- Trinidad; Dominguez, Mancia, Palafox (Ricardinho, 46), Zavaleta; Hinestrosa (Rivera, 69), Mayen, Chavarria, Ayala; Herrera (Gimenez, 75), Maldonado.
Att.: 18,182

CCL Week 5, Results:
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 24
Walter Ferretti (NCA) 1 Motagua (HON) 2
Real Salt Lake 2 Santa Tecla (SLV) 1
Isidro Metapan (SLV) 1 Tigres (MEX) 2
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 23
Central FC (TRI) 1 LA Galaxy 1
Seattle Sounders 3 Vancouver Whitecaps 0
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 22
Montego Bay (JAM) 3 DC United 3
W Connection (TRI) 0 Santos (MEX) 1
Verdes (BLZ) 2 San Francisco (PAN) 1

CCL Standings:
Group 1 -- Saprissa (CRC) 6; Santos (MEX) 6; W Connection (TRI) 3.
Group 2 -- Tigres (MEX) 7; Herediano (CRC) 4; Isidro Metapan (SLV) 3.
Group 3 -- *Queretaro (MEX) 7 (11-2); Verdes FC (BLZ) 4, San Francisco (PAN) 3.
Group 4 -- *LA Galaxy 7; Central FC (TRI) 4; Comunicaciones (GUA) 3.
Group 5 -- Club America (MEX) 9; Motagua (HON) 6; Walter Ferretti (NCA) 0.
Group 6 -- *Seattle Sounders 7 (6-3); Vancouver Whitecaps 4; Olimpia (HON) 3.
Group 7 -- Real Salt Lake 7; Municipal (GUA) 4; Santa Tecla (SLV) 2.
Group 8 -- *D.C. United 10 (9-3); Arabe Unido (PAN) 3; Montego Bay United (JAM) 1.
Note: Teams in bold have finished group play.
*Clinched group title.

CCL Week 6, Schedule:
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 20
8 pm ET Santos (MEX) vs. Saprissa (CRC)
10 pm ET Motagua (HON) vs. Club America (MEX)
10 pm ET Real Salt Lake vs. Municipal (GUA)
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 21
8 pm ET Tigres (MEX) vs. Herediano (CRC)
10 pm ET Comunicaciones (GUA) vs. LA Galaxy
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 22
8 pm ET Montego Bay (JAM) vs. Arabe Unido (PAN)
10 pm ET Olimpia (HON) vs. Vancouver Whitecaps
10 pm ET San Francisco (PAN) vs. Verdes FC (BLZ)

CCL Week 4, Results:
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 17
Central FC (TRI) 1 Comunicaciones (GUA) 0
Queretaro (MEX) 8 Verdes FC (BLZ) 0
Isidro Metapan (SLV) 2 Herediano (CRC) 0
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 16
W Connection (TRI) 2 Saprissa (CRC) 1
Vancouver Whitecaps 1 Olimpia (HON) 0
Walter Ferretti (NCA) 1 Club America (MEX) 3
TUESDAY,
SEPTEMBER 15
D.C. United 2 Arabe Unido (PAN) 0
Santa Tecla (SLV) 0 Real Salt Lake 0

CCL Week 3, Results:
THURSDAY, AUGUST 27
Comunicaciones (GUA) 1 Central FC (TRI) 0
Motagua (HON) 2 Walter Ferretti (NCA) 0
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 26
San Francisco (PAN) 2 Queretaro (MEX) 1
Olimpia (HON) 1 Seattle Sounders 0
Herediano (CRC) 1 Tigres (MEX) 1
TUESDAY, AUGUST 25
D.C. United 3 Montego Bay United (JAM) 0
Saprissa (CRC) 2 Santos (MEX) 1
Municipal (GUA) 2 Santa Tecla (SLV) 1

CCL Week 2, Results:
THURSDAY, AUGUST 20
Saprissa (CRC) 4 W Connection (TRI) 0
Santa Tecla (SLV) 1 Municipal (GUA) 1
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 19
Arabe Unido (PAN) 0 D.C. United 1
Seattle Sounders 2 Olimpia (HON) 1
Club America (MEX) 1 Walter Ferretti (NCA) 0
TUESDAY, AUGUST 18
Tigres (MEX) 2 Isidro Metapan (SLV) 1
Verdes FC (BLZ) 0 Queretaro (MEX) 0
LA Galaxy 5 Comunicaciones (GUA) 0

CCL Week 1, Results:
THURSDAY, AUGUST 6
LA Galaxy 5 Central FC (TRI) 1
Herediano (CRC) 3 Isidro Metapan (SLV) 0
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 5
Arabe Unido (PAN) 3 Montego Bay United (JAM) 0
Vancouver Whitecaps 1 Seattle Sounders 1
Club America (MEX) 4 Motagua (HON) 0
TUESDAY, AUGUST 4
Queretaro (MEX) 2 San Francisco (PAN) 0
Santos (MEX) 4 W Connection (TRI) 0
Municipal (GUA) 0 Real Salt Lake 1
4 comments about "MLS clubs on verge of unprecedented exploit in CCL".
  1. aaron dutch, September 25, 2015 at 11:54 a.m.

    This is great, Its been 15 years and we are taking CCL seriously so if we have 1/2 of the teams in the quarters we are placed to to win which can start a phase of domination of CCL (I hope). Also, if we can get Garber to focus on Liga MX instead of EPL to build a real Cup with LigaMX we can take the CCL with its 550million people and 10% fans thats an awesome market of 50-75m which can 5x the financials of MLS the next 5 -7 years.

  2. musk alex, September 27, 2015 at 3:47 a.m.

    Good point aaron, until then it's better not to get our hopes too high, so you do not remain disappointed.

    US Soccer Games

  3. aaron dutch, September 27, 2015 at 6:21 p.m.

    If we have 1/2 the quarters and we dont win that will be terrible. But even if that happens the key is MLS is taking CCL seriously for the first time. If we can get CCL. With LigaMX & Costa Rica winning 90% of the titles and MLS is a joke in our own region this gives us a chance to display regional football domination for the next 5 years and if we can get our COPA act together, World Cup 2022 or 26 (assuming Qatar fails) then CCL could led our evolution into South American competition which would be awesome

  4. Normand Conquest, September 28, 2015 at 12:36 p.m.

    The article said that it would be the first time that all 4 MLS U.S. based teams advanced. I believe that Toronto knocked out FCD one year to become # 4 MLS side to advance ... even knocking out LA.

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