There are four teams left in the 2018 Concacaf Champions League, and two left standing are MLS sides, the New York Red Bulls and Toronto FC. Toronto are set to face Club América, and New York will take on Chivas de Guadalajara, starting in the first week of April.
With a couple weeks to prepare for the first leg of the semifinals, we asked Armchair Analyst Matthew Doyle, Senior Editors Ben Couch and Nicholas Rosano, New Media Editor Ben Baer, National Writers Sam Stejskal and Paul Tenorio, and Contributors Alicia Rodriguez, Charles Boehm and Bobby Warshaw this question:
Do Toronto FC or the New York Red Bulls have the best shot of winning the CCL this year?
COUCH: It’s the Red Bulls. The squad rotation has looked fresh in every competition thus far, and while the overall roster might not realize what they’re doing until they make it through to the final, there’s just enough key veteran sagacity to keep everyone focused.
DOYLE: As well as they're playing, this is a Cup competition. Red Bull only comes in cans.
WARSHAW: I have no way of approaching this logically. I also resent you making me take a logic approach. I'm just excited for the possibility of having two MLS teams in the final.
Giovinco was decisive for Toronto vs. Tigres | Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
TENORIO: The tournament probably sets up better for the Red Bulls, but Toronto FC might be the best team left in the competition. If they get past América, I think they'll beat either of the other teams on the other side of the bracket. Sebastian Giovinco's goal celebration the other night showed me this Toronto FC team is bought in on a CCL title more than people may realize. Look out.
STEJSKAL: New York. TFC have more talent than the Red Bulls, but Chivas is a much easier opponent than América. Jesse Marsch's group is in pretty impressive form at the moment, too.
BAER: Chivas’ performance on Wednesday night was against a Sounders team that was dealing with a massive amount of injuries. That will likely not be the case when they have to face a Red Bulls squad that look dominant. Unfortunately, TFC have to go up another strong Liga MX team and this one may be too much.
BOEHM: The Red Bulls could definitely ambush Chivas, but I'm going with TFC here. Quality, experience, depth, tactical flexibility and a distinct air of destiny about them. Can't afford any more injuries, though.
RODRIGUEZ: My money is on Toronto. I don't think it will be easy, but if they get past América, they'll have beaten the co-tournament favorites in back-to-back rounds and will be flying high heading into the final, regardless of the opponent.
ROSANO: Toronto for me. It's a tough choice, because RBNY have a more favorable semifinal match-up, but TFC – who have already beaten the defending Liga MX champs – can get past América, I'll take them in the final against either of the two other semifinalists.