Help on way for MLS teams in Champions League

Don Garber

Photo Credit: 
Getty Images

NEW YORK — Major League Soccer confirmed it will
have four clubs representing the United States in the 2011-12 edition
of the CONCACAF Champions League and the league is also looking at ways
to give its participating teams the best
opportunity to succeed.

MLS Commissioner Don Garber revealed that the
league is considering providing additional allocation money to
participating teams, including even more resources as they advance
deeper in the competition. The MLS Board of Governors will
decide on the matter this weekend in Toronto, venue of MLS Cup 2010
between FC Dallas and the Colorado Rapids.

Allocation money can be used toward player salaries over and above the regular salary budget of each MLS club.

“The Champions League is a tournament we continue
to believe is important for us to perform well in,” Garber said. “I
believe we’ll come out of our board meeting with some movement on this.

“This is a priority for us. It’s something we’re
trying to figure out the right way to do it while keeping the integrity
of our entire league system.  It’s something we’re focused on.”

MLS and CONCACAF confirmed the four US
representatives for the 2011-12 edition of the CONCACAF Champions
League that will kick off in the summer of next year: the Los Angeles Galaxy
(Supporters’ Shield winners), Seattle Sounders (US Open
Cup winners), Colorado Rapids (MLS Cup finalists) and FC Dallas (MLS
Cup finalists).

MLS has the possibility for a fifth spot as well, depending on the outcome of the Nutrilife Canadian Championship next summer, which is contested by Toronto FC, Vancouver Whitecaps FC and USSF D-2 side Montreal Impact. The NCC winner receives Canada's lone berth in the Champions League.

For the Rapids and FC Dallas, it will mark their
first-ever appearance in the current format of the CONCACAF Champions
League. The Rapids faced Mexican club León over two matches in June 1998
after finishing as MLS Cup runner-ups the
previous season.

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