NEW YORK - Major League Soccer and the U.S. Soccer Federation today announced that the two finalists participating in MLS Cup 2004 will represent the United States in the 2005 CONCACAF Champions Cup, the annual regional tournament featuring the top clubs from North and Central America and the Caribbean.
Two single-elimination Conference Championships this weekend will determine the finalists for MLS Cup 2004 scheduled for Sunday, November 14 at The Home Depot Center (3:30 p.m. ET live on ABC Sports). The Conference Championship weekend begins on Friday, November 5 with the Western Conference Championship matching the Los Angeles Galaxy (No. 2 seed) against the Kansas City Wizards (No. 1 seed) from Arrowhead Stadium (8:30 p.m. ET). The Eastern Conference Championship will be played the next day on Saturday, November 6 as the surprising New England Revolution (No. 4 seed) will travel to RFK Stadium (7:00 p.m. ET) to take on three-time MLS Cup champion D.C. United (No. 2 seed).
Of these four potential MLS Cup finalists, D.C. United has participated in five CONCACAF Champions Cup tournaments (1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2002), winning the 1998 event. The Los Angeles Galaxy, winners of the 2000 CONCACAF Champions Cup, have participated on three occasions (1997, 2000, 2003), while the New England Revolution (2003) and Kansas City Wizards (2002) have each participated once. D.C. United and the Los Angeles Galaxy squared off in the 2000 Champions Cup, which saw the Galaxy advance on penalty kicks.
Aside from the 2002 and 2003 editions of the CONCACAF Champions Cup which saw four MLS teams participate, the MLS Cup Champions and runner-up represented the United States in all previous tournaments since 1997. The 2003 MLS Cup Champion San Jose Earthquakes and runners-up Chicago Fire participated in the 2004 event.
MLS CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIP PARTICIPANTS IN THE CONCACAF CHAMPIONS CUP:
1997 - Lost in Semifinals; 1-0 to Los Angeles Galaxy (MLS) on August 22, 1997 in RFK Stadium, Washington D.C.
1998 - Won Final; 1-0 versus Toluca (Mexico) on August 16, 1998 in RFK Stadium, Washington D.C.
1999 - Lost in Semifinals; 5-4 on PK's to LD Alajuelense (Costa Rica) after 1-1 tie on October 1, 1999 in Las Vegas, NV
2000 - Lost in Semifinals; 4-2 on PK's to Los Angeles Galaxy (MLS) after 1-1 tie on January 19, 2001 in Los Angeles, CA
2002 - Lost in Round of 16; 5-2 aggregate to CSD Comunicaciones (Guatemala) on March 13, 2002
KANSAS CITY WIZARDS
2002 - Lost in Semifinals; 7-2 aggregate to Monarcas Morelia (Mexico) in August, 2002
LOS ANGELES GALAXY
1997 - Lost in Final 5-3 to Cruz Azul (Mexico) on August 24, 1997 in RFK Stadium, Washington D.C.
2000 - Won Final; 3-2 versus CD Olimpia (Honduras) on January 21, 2001 in Los Angeles, CA
2003 - Lost in Quarterfinals; 6-2 aggregate to CD Necaxa (Mexico) on April 9, 2003
NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION
2003 - Lost in Round of 16: 5-3 on aggregate to LD Alajuelense (Costa Rica) in March 2003