Monday Lunch: CONCACAF Champions League–A Closer Look

Posted: August 22, 2011 in concacaf, professional sports, soccer, sports
Tags: , , ,

By Evan Ream

Ever since CONCACAF decided to change the format (for the better) of its Champions League, I have taken a great interest in it. For the three years that this competition has existed, Mexican teams have dominated it claiming all three titles, five of the six finals appearances and nine of the 12 semifinals appearances. A Mexican team has never failed to advance. During my research of this competition, I compiled every team relevant statistic that is concerned with the advancement of each team and here is what I found. I present a compilation of each team and each country’s statistics in this competition:

CONCACAF Champions League

Teams Reaching Last 8 (by country)


Mexico 4 (Atlante*, Santos Laguna, Cruz Azul, Universidad Nacional)

USA 1 (Houston Dynamo)

Canada 1 (Montreal Impact)

Honduras 1 (Marathon)

Puerto Rico 1 (Puerto Rico Islanders)



Mexico 4 (Pumas, Cruz Azul, Toluca, Pachuca*)

USA 1 (Columbus Crew)

Honduras 1 (Marathon)

Panama 1 (Arabe Unido)

Guatemala 1 (Comunicaciones)



Mexico 4 (Toluca, Monterrey*, Cruz Azul, Santos Laguna)

USA 2 (Columbus Crew, Real Salt Lake)

Costa Rica 1 (Saprissa)

Honduras 1 (Olimpia)

*Won title


Most quarterfinals by team

3 – Cruz Azul

2 – Santos Laguna, Toluca, Columbus Crew, Marathon


Most semifinals by team

3 – Cruz Azul

1 – Santos Laguna, Atlante, Pachuca, Toluca, Pumas, Monterrey, Puerto Rico Islanders, Real Salt Lake, Saprissa


Most finals by team

2 – Cruz Azul

1 – Atlante, Pachuca, Monterrey, Real Salt Lake


Overall % of country made (not including this season)

Mexico 100% (12/12)

Honduras 37.5% (3/8)

USA 33.3% (4/12)

Canada 33.3% (1/3)

Puerto Rico 33.3% (1/3)

Guatemala 16.7% (1/6)

Panama 14.3% (1/7)

Costa Rica 14.3% (1/7)

El Salvador 0% (0/6)

Trinidad and Tobago 0% (0/5)

Belize 0% (0/1)

Nicaragua 0% (0/1)

Jamaica 0% (0/1)

These last percentages take into account each team that has entered the tournament from the beginning stage, not just the group stage, so some of these teams didn’t even advance to group play.

For the fun of it, here are my predictions for this years’ tournament:

Group A

  1. LA Galaxy
  2. Morelia
  3. Alajuelense
  4. Motagua

Group B

  1. Santos Laguna
  2. Colorado Rapids
  3. Real Espana
  4. Isidro Metapan

Group C

  1. FC Dallas
  2. Toronto FC
  3. Pumas
  4. Tauro

Group D

  1. Monterrey
  2. Seattle Sounders FC
  3. Herediano
  4. Communicaciones

Obviously I won’t be able to predict the quarterfinal stage and beyond, as the draw is random, but these are my picks for the group stages. Pumas would be the first Mexican team to not advance and I am picking all five MLS teams to advance.

  1. Brendan says:

    That was a bold prediction, but the matches in the last week have only reinforced the possibility. Here’s hoping you’re right.

    • MLS teams just can’t be beat, though I think the Galaxy will probably not win their next game, which is in Mexico.


      • Brendan says:

        There is hope yet. Morelia has not been too impressive so far this year, despite being pretty nasty in liguilla last year. They have a big match against league leading Cruz Azul three days prior. In the same respect, Los Angeles may not want to take their foot off the gas so they can secure the supporter’s shield. They have a game in hand on Seattle, against New York so that’s at least a guaranteed point (saying that as a Red Bulls supporter).

        But the match is two weeks away, things may change, but I think Los Angeles may have the benefit of the schedule in this one.

      • All interesting points, I don’t really have any reason why I think the Galaxy won’t win, it’s just a gut feeling, though my gut has been proven wrong many times. I hope it is once again.


      • I really hope for MLS’s sake that Chicago doesn’t win the US Open Cup. I wouldn’t want them representing MLS in the CCL. The Sounders would do a much better job and are just a much better team in general.


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