We start the soccer news with the highly unlikely scenario that Sporting Kansas City will come back in the 2019 Concacaf Champions League. Sporting KC lost their semifinal first-leg 5-0 at Monterrey. Dorlan Pabon opened the scoring in the 7th minute with Aviles Hurtado doubling the lead in the 14th. Jesus Gallardo made it 3-0 in the 55th and Nicholas Sanchez converted a 70th minute penalty. Pabon finished off the goals in the 76th minute. Monterrey had 11 shots on goal to Sporting's 2, though Sporting had the edge in possession at 56%.
"The difference in this game was that we were not good with the ball, we gave it up in critical areas," Sporting KC coach Peter Vermes said. "The difference is they took advantage of each of the opportunities where we coughed the ball up in bad places, or were not good with the ball, and then they went and they scored. They were relentless at it. They had an incredible desire and intensity to do that. If you had to ask me for one reason, it's that in itself."
Sporting hosts Monterrey on April 11 needing a lot of unanswered goals at home. Otherwise, it's an all Liga MX final with a Mexican club taking the Concacaf championship for the 14th consecutive time. It's worth repeating a point made by Luis Bueno now that we know the Club World Cup is moving to every four years. Without knowing how Concacaf will determine its entries into that revamped tournament, the importance of the Champions League each year is now an open question.
FIFA's revamp may take away the urgency for every Concacaf Champions League, changing the tone of the tournament. That may or may not benefit an MLS team, but it also potentially puts an asterisk beside a title moving forward. It's the old Gold Cup scenario when the tournament doesn't lead to a place in the Confederations Cup. More to the point, it's the new Gold Cup scenario since the Confederations Cup no longer exists. How does Concacaf deal with both of their prestige tournaments in FIFA's new era?
Also in the soccer news, Ethan Horvath was in goal for Club Brugge's 3-2 win at Anderlecht. Wesley put Club Brugge up in the 5th minute with Emmanuel Dennis scoring in the34th. Anderlecht pulled a goal back in the 64th. Arnaut Groeneveld made it 3-1 Club Brugge in the 87th with Anderlecht scoring a minute into stoppage time. Julian Green subbed out in the 76th minute for Furth's 0-0 home draw with Dynamo Dresden in the 2.Bundesliga. Both teams finished with 2 shots on goal.
MLSsoccer's Bobby Warshaw on Sporting's loss at Monterrey. The Kansas City Star's Sam McDowell's match report. Soccer America's Brian Sciaretta previews the big games on the MLS Week 6 schedule. MLSPA profiles FC Cincinnati player Nick Hagglund. Fast Company talks to Atlanta United president Darren Eales. The Sacramento Bee's Tony Bizjak reports on the city's push to win an MLS expansion team.
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