Another interesting week of action. Monterrey were crowned CAMPEONES DE CONCACAF for a THIRD CONSECUTIVE time. Congrats!
In semifinal action Montreal eviscerated Toronto 6-0 to win their two legged series 6-2. Marco Di Vaio was the man in this game with two goals and two assists. Justin Mapp had a goal and an assist himself. Daniele Paponi, Andres Romero and Andrew Wenger rounded out the goal scorers in an epic, sure to be talked about in Montreal lore, win.
In the other semifinal Vancouver took care of business against NASL side Edmonton by winning 2-0 upping their margin of victory to 5-2 on aggregate. Edmonton played a man down from the Fifty-First minute onward.
The two legged final starts May 15th in Montreal. Winner earns a slot in the next CONCACAF Champions League tournament starting later this year.
There were a trio of early Saturday games. NY beat Cbus in the nationally televised affair. A Louis Robles penalty save (!) and a header by Tim Cahill sealed victory for NY. San Jose looks to be finding a bit of their form from last year by getting a stoppage goal from Sam Cronin to rescue a point from an excellent Montreal side. Final score 2-2. Impressive nonetheless for the Impact as they take a point on the road. The third afternoon game was a WILD affair in Philly which saw heated post game comments from Union coach John Hackworth. The powder keg was set off when ref Jorge Gonzalez issued reds to both Sheannon Williams and Lamar Neagle for a head to head face off. Minutes later DeAndre Yedlin was also ejected following a rather rash tackle from behind. Eddie Johnson got a yellow a minute later for kneeing a downed Philly player. Then there was a BLATANT handball by Leo Gonzalez off a Conor Casey shot that went uncalled. Gonzalez should have been red carded for that. A terrible final ten minutes for the referee. Overlooked in all of that mess was a Danny Cruz brace (in two minutes!) for Philly. That Fucking Guy Eddie Johnson scored along with the detestable Mauro Rosales.
The Saturday nightcaps were not nearly as exciting. Colorado predictably scored a late goal to steal a win from TFC. While RSL dispatched Vancouver with relative ease. RSL's kids were very good. Joao Plata got both assists while Luis Gil scored the first one and Javier Morales scored the second.
Sunday afternoon brought us the massacre of Chivas USA on UniMas. A 4-0 beat down from Kansas City. Most of the damage was done after Dan Kennedy was red carded early in the second half. The young Chivas backline never recovered from their leader being ejected. The late Sunday night game between the Galaxy and Dynamo started very late. 10 PM Central time. I ended up falling asleep during the match but did get to see Landon Donovan miss ANOTHER PENALTY. Hilarity. Houston ended up winning the rematch of MLS Cup 1-0 on a Andrew Driver goal scored in the Fifty-Sixth minute.
For more on the MLS week the was check out Graham Parker and the crew at the Guardian. Best weekly recap going.
Current table sees NY, KC, Houston and Montreal all tied on points for the top spot in the East. Weirdly NY has played three more games than Montreal two more than Houston and one more than KC. FC Dallas continues their stranglehold at the top of the west.
This next week sees almost a full slate of action on Wednesday. New York vs Montreal (6:30 central KO) and FC Dallas vs Portland (8:00 central KO) look to be the best matchups. All games on Wednesday are available via MLS Live.
Saturday sees the return of the Fire as they do battle with Philadelphia at 12:30PM on NBC Sports. So I'll see you guys at 10 AM on Saturday. Right?
Sunday Houston plays Sporting KC at 7PM available on MLS Live.
Check out the entire schedule here.
Tigres beat America at Azteca 2-0 to claim the Clausura and the top spot in the Liguilla playoffs. Excellent work from Tigres all season.
America ended up coming in second due to Atlas somehow losing to Leon 1-0 at home. Who knows maybe they wanted the third seed? No idea. The rest of the results were a bit mundane.
Monterrey snuck into the final playoff spot even while losing 5-1 to Cruz Azul. Winning championships has hangover type effects. Monterrey got into the playoffs even coming in Ninth place because Queretaro was disqualified from the playoffs due to being relegated for next year. Relegation in Liga MX is complicated and involves average points over a certain amount of time. Queretaro lost out to Puebla for the relegation spot. The Leguilla playoffs get started this week. The Univision schedule lists tomorrow as the start date but no times are listed.
There are some terrific pairings to start the playoffs. America vs Pumas being the big one. Mexico City rivals clash here. Both games are expected to sell out. Only 160,000 fans over two legs. No big deal.
The other rivalry happening in the quarterfinals is Tigres vs Monterrey. The Monterrey derby will be excellent. It is a 1 vs 8 matchup but anyone who just watched Monterrey win the CCL final knows they are dangerous and battle tested over two legs. This will not be easy for Tigres.
CFU Club Championship
This tournament is going on right now. Hard to find much about it but Three CONCACAF Champions league slots are the prize. The winner of each group (there are only two) advance. The runner ups of each group play each other in a playoff game. Currently W Connection(Trinidad) and Valencia (Haiti) are winning their respective groups. with Portmore United (Jamaica, who were a late replacement for Inter Moengotapoe a Suriname club that withdrew) and Caledonia AIA (Trinidad) in position to play for the final slot. Results are hard to find so standings may have changed.
It is playoff time in Belize as Police United take on Belize Defence Force and FC Belize try to take down regular season champs and top seed Belmopan Bandits. The winner of this playoff would play the Bandits for the right to participate in CCL play.
Games were played over the weekend but I am unable to find results. I will update when I do.
That is it for now.