CCL Preview: Sounders, Pumas seeking finals berths

CCL Preview: Sounders, Pumas seeking finals berths

CCL Preview: Sounders, Pumas seeking finals berths

The first leg of the Concacaf Champions League semifinals brought convincing wins for Pumas and the Seattle Sounders. Heading into the second leg, can Cruz Azul or New York City FC flip the script?
The Sounders took care of business with an emphatic 3-1 win at Lumen Field last week. A powerful shot from Jordan Morris and an outstanding team goal finished off by Albert Rusnak ensured the Sounders would be in control for the second leg.
Juan Ignacio Dinenno, the tournament’s leading scorer, struck twice for Pumas in the first leg against Mexican opposition. Cruz Azul fought hard to score in the second half, which will make the return leg in Mexico City an interesting one.
This year’s CCL final is sure to feature an MLS team for the fifth time in the competition’s history. An MLS team has never won CCL, and either the Sounders or NYCFC have the chance to make history in a two-leg final against a Mexican opponent.
Cruz Azul vs. UNAM Pumas
Tuesday, 10 p.m., FS1, UniMas, TUDN, Pumas leads 2-1 on aggregate
Juan Ignacio Dinenno is the hottest scorer in CCL, and Cruz Azul has its work cut out to stop him yet again, even with the home-field advantage of Estadio Azteca.
Cruz Azul will look to build on Christian Tabo’s 83rd-minute goal from the first leg. Midfielder Uriel Antuna has played well in CCL, and Cruz Azul put in a strong performance in the first leg despite Dinenno finding the net in the first half.
Pumas has gone four matches unbeaten in all competitions, while Cruz Azul hasn’t won a match since April 2. However, La Maquina have won its last three home matches and given up only one goal.
New York City FC vs. Seattle Sounders
Wednesday, 9 p.m., FS1, TUDN, Sounders lead 3-1 on aggregate
New York City FC takes the second leg to Red Bull Arena, where the defending MLS Cup champs will look to turn around a 3-1 deficit from the first leg. A VAR review and penalty call for the Sounders’ third goal surely left a bad taste in NYCFC’s mouth after the first leg, and motivation will be high for a turnaround.
Valentin Castellanos will look to make up for a poor individual showing in the first leg. Thiago Andrade scored to equalize in the first leg, giving NYCFC a lifeline to build on for Wednesday’s match.
However, the Sounders enter this match looking like one of the best MLS teams in the league right now. Raul Ruidiaz is back to full fitness, and Albert Rusnak seems completely up to speed as a new addition in this midfield. Both teams are healthy and should be raring to go for a spot in the final.

Source:https://sbisoccer.com/2022/04/ccl-preview-sounders-pumas-seeking-finals-berths

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