If you know anything about the tortured history of MLS clubs facing off against Liga MX opposition in the CONCACAF Champions League and its predecessor the CONCACAF Champions Cup, you probably recognize what a huge milestone the New York Red Bulls’ 2-0 win at Club Tijuana is.
Tuesday’s result at Estadio Caliente marks just the third victory in 49 competitive matches on Mexican soil for MLS teams, and the first ever to occur in a knockout situation. It's also the first multi-goal win for an MLS team in those matchups.
In 43 competitive games in Mexico, MLS sides have managed a total of just three wins and eight draws among 38 losses (3-38-8).
MLS representatives’ only previous wins in Mexico both came during the 2011-12 of the CCL – in fact, they took place on back-to-back days during the group stage, a feature which was phased out when the tournament changed to a single-elimination knockout format this year. (It should be noted that neither Liga MX side below played their full first-choice starting lineups.)
Those two previous MLS wins in Mexico:
- FC Dallas 1, Pumas UNAM 0 (goal by Marvin Chavez), Group C, Estadio Olímpico Universitario, Mexico City, Aug. 17, 2011
- Seattle Sounders 1, Monterrey 0 (goal by Alvaro Fernandez), Group D, Estadio Tecnológico, Monterrey, Aug. 16, 2011
Toronto FC and the Sounders will also hope to make the same sort of breakthrough that RBNY achieved on Tuesday in their respective CCL quarterfinal series vs. Mexican heavyweights.
TFC host Tigres UANL at BMO Field on Wednesday (8 pm ET | UDN, go90.com) before visiting Estadio Universitario ("The Volcano") for Leg 2 on Mar. 13 (10 PM ET | UDN, go90.com). Seattle host Chivas in Leg 1 at CenturyLink Field on Wednesday (10 pm ET | UDN, go90.com), then visit Estadio Akron in Guadalajara on Mar. 14 (10 pm ET | UDN, go90.com).