Sounders look to finish off Santos in tonight’s CCL decider

SoundersSantos (Getty)

The Seattle Sounders have made the trip south to Mexico in search of survival and chance to move a step closer to a CONCACAF Champions League title. It is a trip no MLS team has ever returned from triumphantly, but the Sounders look more than capable of making history.

The Sounders have taken a one-goal lead down to Torreon, Mexico, after posting a 2-1 victory in the first leg. They will be looking to become the first MLS team, make that the first-non Mexican team, to eliminate a Mexican club from the CONCACAF Champions League knockout rounds in its current format.

The task seems overwhelming on the surface. Seattle must hold off the team currently in first place in Mexico, the team that has scored the most goals in the Mexican League, in a stadium where they have yet to lose, in a competition that has never seen a Mexican team lose to a non-Mexican team in the knockout stages.

It almost seems downright impossible. At least if Seattle hadn’t already beaten Santos Laguna a week ago, and done so in thoroughly impressive fashion.

The Sounders will face a stiffer test in Torreon. Santos Laguna has an attack that is currently firing on all cylinders. Led by the forward tandem of Oribe Peralta and Herculez Gomez, as well as the playmaking of Mark Crosas, Santos has the weapons to punish Seattle's defense.

Seattle should be up for the challenge, and have experience winning in Mexico, having beaten a strong Monterrey side in group stage play last year. Tonight's test is much tougher though. They face an in-form team at home, though fatigue could be an issue for a Santos Laguna squad that played a match last weekend while the Sounders were off.

If the Sounders are going to pull off the upset, they will need their offense to find the team a road goal, and it will be up to the tandem of Mauro Rosales and Fredy Montero to create some more magic. They are likely to face a tougher Santos Laguna defense than the one they beat in Seattle, with Panamanian enforcer Felipe Baloy a good bet to play tonight after missing the first leg.

Seattle has plenty of reason to be confident considering how well they played in the first leg. The question is which of the Sounders' top players will step up with a star performance to help Seattle escape from Mexico with a result and a ticket to the Champions League semifinals?

This entry was posted in CONCACAF Champions League, Mexican Soccer, MLS- Seattle Sounders. Bookmark the permalink.

28 Responses to Sounders look to finish off Santos in tonight’s CCL decider

  1. ericJ says:

    Wooo Go sounders!

  2. BSU SC says:

    SEEEEAAAATLE!!!!
    SOOUUUUUNDERS!!!

  3. Advocate says:

    Huge, huge challenge; but there is an air of optimism and confidence with the team right now. They know the size of the mountain they must climb, know what it will take to climb it, and feel cautiously optimistic they can accomplish the task.

    It will be a battle and there will be blood!!

    Eternal Blue, Forever Green.

  4. kev says:

    call that Gomez up. He’s an American and he’s scoring and he’s doing so in a non-MLS league. IMPRESSIVE

  5. Yusef says:

    Herc will get a brace tonight.

  6. T says:

    Let’s hope they can, Seattle played well in the first leg, but Santos is going to want to maximize their home field this go around. A MLS club winning CCL would be fantastic, we have some solid teams in with LA and Toronto has looked motivated as well.

  7. sammysounder74 says:

    SEAAAAAAAAATLEE!!

  8. sammysounder74 says:

    So would you start Johnson or Estrada?

  9. euroman says:

    Hey Seattle, what’s up with the girls U-8 uni’s?

  10. mikey says:

    Go MLS!

  11. marco says:

    “If the Sounders are going to pull off the upset, they will need their offense to find the team a road goal…”

    and for Alonso to pick his game up a notch. Remember, Sigi said EJ was brought in for just this occasion. Will he deliver?

  12. WileyJ says:

    I BELIEVE ! GO SSFC !

  13. acj says:

    Sigi never said EJ was brought in just for this game. He’s not fit and he probably won’t play be starting.

  14. Kasey says:

    “and for Alonso to pick his game up a notch.”

    will a SSFC win even impress you?

  15. Vic says:

    Does anyone know if Zakuani and Rosales are available for tonight?

  16. JesseMT says:

    Zak’s out a few more months. Rosales will start.

  17. Tyler says:

    Rooting for SSFC tonight. Would be a massive victory for the league and would also ensure we have an MLS club in the final for the 2nd consecutive year.

  18. JJ says:

    Sounders til I die, hey!

  19. Dr.Science says:

    A win could really take Sounders fan insufferability to another level. The Internet needs that like another kitten video.

  20. G? says:

    Honey badger feeds off of your hate.
    #beatsantos

  21. jonfsoccer says:

    that is really funny- f-ing perfectly said

  22. Gnarls says:

    At least they don’t make my eyeballs bleed like highlighter yellow from last year.

  23. Don Garber says:

    Thank you.

  24. Gnarls says:

    God I hate that team, but I share your pro-MLS patriotism tonight.

  25. Kasey says:

    SSFC and TFC should be a good series

  26. sammysounder74 says:

    Sounders invented insufferability !!!

  27. marco says:

    As the top DM in MLS Alonso can do better. Of course EJ was not brought in for one game, but Sigi did say they needed a forward, and early, so he brought in EJ.
    Both can win this game with good performances. I’m a fan not a cheerleader.