Moving on to the FIFA Club World Cup as an additional prize, Pumas and Seattle Sounders, of Major League Soccer (MLS) in the United States, will meet today in the first leg of the CONCACAF Champions League final, which will be held at the Olympic University Stadium.
The UNAM team presents itself with a commitment to maintaining the dominance that Mexican clubs had in Concachampions Since the 2005-2006 season.
In contrast, the Seattle Sounders are heading for the regional cup that US teams have won only twice, more than 20 years ago.
To reach the CONCACAF final, Pumas defeated Costa Rica Saprissa in the round of 16, the New England Revolution in the United States in the quarter-finals, and Cruz Azul in the semi-finals.
With his modest side, the Oriazole team also tried to fight in the domestic league, having one foot in the playoff round, but with the risk of elimination on the final day, where he will face captain Pachuca.
Faced with such a scenario, cat coach Andres Lelini confirmed that his priority is the CONCACAF final.
“I would not like to stay out of the league, but specifically, we are two games away from a very important international title for us. Apart from winning it, it will be going to the Club World Cup,” the Argentine helmsman stated yesterday in a press conference.
Absence of cats
In this first match of the final, the coach will miss two absences: one due to suspension, defender Arturo Ortiz, and due to injury, the absence of midfielder Lionel Lopez, while top scorer Juan Dinino is questionable.
Puma will seek to win the CONCACAF title for the fourth time after being crowned in 1980, 1982 and 1989. In addition, they are seeking to make up for being the last Mexican team to lose the championship in the regional final: that was in the 2004-05 season. When they fell in Saprisa.
The Seattle Sounders, fourth on the MLS payroll, reached this final after wide eliminations of Motagua of Honduras, Leon of Mexico and New York.
Founded in 2007, the Seattle Sounders were two-time MLS champions, having started competing in the 2009 season. The franchise did not yet exist when DC United in 1998 and LA Galaxy won the only two CONCACAF titles held by MLS clubs.
It’s an amazing opportunity. “It’s for eternity,” said former footballer Garth Lageroy, current head of the Sounders. “No MLS team has won it,” the captain said, referring to the Champions League title, which has been in place since the 2008-09 season, and its name.
The return leg will take place on Wednesday, May 4th at Lumens Field in Seattle.
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