CONCACAF announced the pots for the draw for the 2018 edition of the CONCACAF Champions League on Wednesday, revealing the potential matchups for the five MLS teams slated to participate in the tournament.
The CCL draw will be held on Monday, Dec. 18 in Miami. The 2018 tournament will be the first since CONCACAF restructured the CCL as a 16-team, two-legged knockout round competition. The participating teams will learn their opening round opponents and bracket position at the draw.
CONCACAF will use a double-blind system involving four pots – two “club pots” and two “bracket position pots” – at the draw. The club pots will each contain eight of the participating clubs, while the two bracket position pots will contain the 16 possible bracket locations for each club.
Club pot placement was determined by the new CONCACAF Club Index, which ranks clubs based on performance of their countries over the last five editions of the CCL.
Four of the five MLS participants – FC Dallas, New York Red Bulls, Seattle Sounders and Toronto FC – were placed into Pot 1. The fifth MLS participant, Colorado Rapids, were placed into Pot 2. Colorado will not be eligible to face any American club in the first round, but they will be allowed to square off with Toronto to open the tournament.
The draw will determine the entire CCL bracket. There will not be a re-draw at any point in the process.
For the Round of 16, Pot 1 clubs will play the first leg on the road and host the second leg.
Clubs from Pot 1 will receive their bracket position from Pot A, while clubs from Pot 2 will receive their bracket position from Pot B.
2018 CCL Pots
Pot 1: Toronto FC (CAN); CD Guadalajara (MEX); Club America (MEX); Tigres UANL (MEX); Club Tijuana (MEX); FC Dallas (USA); New York Red Bulls (USA); Seattle Sounders FC (USA)
Pot 2: Deportivo Saprissa (CRC); CS Herediano (CRC*); Cibao FC (DOM); FC Motagua (HON); Club Deportivo Olimpia (HON); Tauro FC (PAN); Santa Tecla FC (SLV); Colorado Rapids (USA)
Pot A: A1, A2, A3, A4, A5, A6, A7, A8
Pot B: B1, B2, B3, B4, B5, B6, B7, B8
2018 CCL Match Windows
Round of 16: Feb. 20-22 and Feb, 27-March 1
Quarterfinals: March 6-8 and March 13-15
Semifinals: April 3-5 and April 10-12
Finals: April 17-19 and April 24-26