Friday, August 26, 2011

Dallas, Galaxy Improve to 2-0 in CONCACAF Champion's League

MLS continued it's strong performance in the CONCACAF Champion's League yesterday netting 2 more wins and improving to 8-1-1 through the first two rounds. In fact, the only MLS side to lose was Toronto FC, and they lost to FC Dallas. While there's still a lot of soccer left to played, if you're an MLS fan, you have to like what you've seen thus far. Last year, 4 MLS teams made the Round of 16, but only two of them advanced. Real Salt Lake. The year before that, only one MLS squad advanced beyond the Round of 16. This year, the four American MLS sides are the only teams that haven't lost at least one match. We'll see if this year's group can sustain their high level of play the rest of the way.

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A quick recap of the last two days of matches. Dallas defeated Toronto 1-0 yesterday after getting washed out less than halfway through the match the day before. Coincidentally, Dallas was also leading that match 1-0 in the first half. In the replay, defender Jack Stewart scored in first half stoppage time heading home a cross from Ugo Ihemelu. It was a big moment for Stewart who hasn't played in an MLS regular season game since 2007, and only just joined Dallas last week on loan from the NSC Minnesota Stars of the North American Soccer League (NASL). The Galaxy also improved to 2-0 yesterday as they remained unbeaten in the Robbie Keane era by defeating Costa Rican Champions Alajuelense 2-0. Keane did not factor in the scoring, but he didn't need to as Omar Gonzalez headed in a David Beckham corner and Chad Barrett came off the bench to score a late insurance goal to clinch the win for the Galaxy. It was Barrett's first appearance for the Galaxy since July 4th.

In other matches Comunicaciones defeated Herediano 2-0 behind second half goals from Marbin Ceballos and Bryan Ordoñez. The Costa Rican side has now been outscored 7-0 in its first two matches. Isidro Metapán also won by a 2-0 margin taking out Mexican side Santos in El Salvador. Metapán got goals from Paolo Suárez, his second in as many matches, and Christian Javier Bautista in picking up their first points. Tauro FC and Pumas UNAM drew 0-0 in Panama as Pumas have now been shut out in two straight matches, and Morelia blasted Honduran side Motagua 4-0 getting goals from four different players: Rafael Márquez Lugo, Joao Rojas, Diego Jiménez and Édgar Lugo.

Here's a look at the next round of matches that kicks off on September 13th:

9/13 - LA Galaxy @ Morelia
9/13 - Isidro Metapán @ Real España
9/13 - Santos Laguna @ Colorado Rapids
9/14 - Tauro @ FC Dallas
9/14 - Toronto FC @ Pumas UNAM
9/14 - Seattle Sounders @ Herediano
9/14 - Monterrey @ Comunicaciones
9/15 - Alajuelense @ Motagua

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