CONCACAF Champions League: Quarterfinals pairings set, three MLS-Liga MX matchups on tap
The path to the 2013-14 CONCACAF Champions League has been set, and it's not an easy one for MLS' three remaining representatives.
All three teams will face Liga MX opposition, with the mouthwatering prospect of the LA Galaxy and Tijuana in a cross-border rivalry the marquee matchup. It was an unlikely proposition at the beginning of the final evening of group stage play on Thursday, but a very real one following the LA Galaxy's 4-0 thumping at the hands of Isidro Metapán.
Joining the Galaxy in the quarterfinals will be Sporting KC – who also missed a chance to move up in the seeding when they played to a 0-0 draw with Olimpia of Honduras on Wednesday night – and the San Jose Earthquakes, who eked out a place in the quarterfinals with a 1-0 win over Guatemala's Heredia, also on Wednesday.
The 2013-14 CCL quarterfinal matches, which are scheduled to start on March 11, 2014, are as follows:
- Toluca (1) vs. San Jose Earthquakes (8)
- Cruz Azul (2) vs. Sporting Kansas City (7)
- Club Tijuana (3) vs. LA Galaxy (6)
- Árabe Unido (4) vs. Alajuelense (5)
Per the 2013-14 CCL regulations, seeding for the quarterfinal is determined by the number of points each qualifier obtained in the group stage. There were two instances in which multiple teams finished level on points (Toluca and Cruz Azul; Árabe Unido, Alajuelense and the LA Galaxy), and both were decided by the first tiebreaker for seeding, goal differential.
The lower seed will host the first leg of the two-legged aggregate series, while the higher seed will host the second leg. The winner of the 1-v-8 matchup will face the winner of the 4-v-5 matchup in the semifinals, and the 2-v-7 winner will face 3-v-6.