Friday, September 17, 2021

The CONCACAF Champions League 2021 finalists

The CONCACAF Champions League has always been won by Mexican teams, and this year will be no exception as the finalists have been found, and they are both Mexican sides.

Philadephia Union were the only MLS team represented in the semifinals, but were against all odds when playing the Mexican giants of Club America. The Mexicans had won 2-0 at home, and repeated the victory in Philadephia with the same score.

Club America will be playing their 8th final in the CONCACAF Champions League/Cup, and the team managed by Santiago Solari have reason to be optimistic, as they have won all of their seven previous finals.

The other finalist will be the "Rayados" from Monterrey. They roundly defeated the defending Mexican champions of Cruz Azul. They first won 1-0 in Monterrey, and then trashed the Cruz Azul side in Mexico City 1-4. Sadly the match had to be suspended halfway through the second half (when Monterrey were already 1-4 ahead) due to the frequent problem in Mexican football of a homophobic chant (I don't understand much what suspending it does, as I think that whoever chanted did not care; much more efficient would be to find the perpetrators and suspend them from the stadium with a fine, and play future matches without spectators; if it continues, throw the teams out of the tournament!).

Monterrey have won the Champions League four times, the first in 2011, so all their titles have been in the Champions League era. And just as America: Monterrey have never lost a CONCACAF Champions League final.

So one of the teams will lose a final for the first time, and as strong as they are looking, it could be either of them.

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