MLS- Real Salt Lake

Suazo PK lifts Monterrey into CCL final

MonterreyCA (Reuters Pictures)

Monterrey will join Real Salt Lake in the CONCACAF Champions League final.

Humberto Suazo's 81st-minute penalty kick sealed a 1-1 draw at Estadio Azul Wednesday night, lifting Monterrey past Cruz Azul, 3-2 on aggregate in their CCL semifinal.

Cruz Azul, looking to reach the CCL final for the third consecutive year, looked to be on its way after Cesar Villaluz scored in the 24th minute to level the aggregate score and give Cruz Azul the edge because of its away goal in the first leg. Waldo Ponce was whistled for a late foul in the box, though, earning his second yellow card and yielding a PK to Suazo, who buried it to tilt the scales back in Monterrey's favor.

Monterrey, which has yet to lose in this year's CCL campaign, will host the first leg of the final on April 20. The second leg will be played at Rio Tinto Stadium in Utah on April 27.

Highlights from the Monterrey-Cruz Azul match are after the jump:


What did you think of the PK call? How do you think RSL matches up with Monterrey? Who do you think will win the CONCACAF Champions League final?

Share your thoughts below.

  • Dale

    Monterrey, I feel is going to win it. 2 Mexican League Champoinships in 4 seasons dont come along very easily at all and I’ve seen Chupete Suazo single handedly win games and finals(like the Copa libertadores and both Mexican league titles), besides Los Rayados are unbeaten in in CCL. RSL must be careful with Cardozo who came from Boca jrs, Walter Ayovi, Osvaldo Martinez, and Aldo De Nigris. May the best team win….


  • Dale

    I’m not by any means a Monterrey fan but just to you you guys a glimpse of who they are and how they play here is the video of las season’s final some months ago….I copied and pasted the link sorry guys,Im a santos laguna/Dynamo fan and I was crushed to see one of my teams lose to a superior team..


  • Dudeinho

    RSL has no Chance this team is miles better than Cruz Azul they did enough to get the result

    Ill be completely surprised if RSL can even get a draw in Mexico

    it will have to be the Best two games RSL have played ever

    this Monterrey team is Loaded and their home support is some of the best in the Americas.


  • Eric

    I wouldn’t be so quick to write off RSL. Mexican teams are notorious about not always putting a lot of emphasis on strong defensive play, making their attacks look a lot more dangerous than they might actually be. RSL boasts possibly the best backline and keeper in MLS along with one of the best midfields and front lines. I think RSL has around a 50/50 shot.


  • Eurosnob

    So there will be no excuses for Mexican league fanboys, if Monterrey is defeated, right?


  • jb

    Yeah I think Monterrey has to be considered the favorite, but that doesnt mean RSL can’t win it. I think alot will depend on how RSL comes out in the first game. If RSL can come away with a win, draw, or even a one goal loss, they will have a chance. They really just have to avoid being blown out by 2 goals or more. Having the second leg at home might make all the difference.


  • socnow

    Oh yeah, big scary Mexican team. Wee little MLS team. Whatever, lame storyline dude. Cruz Azul was robbed by the ref last night, no way that’s a PK.


  • SkinnyJ

    For all those touting Monterrey as the heavy favorites… Is this the same Monterrey team that needed an arguable PK to get past a Cruz Azul team that RSL destroyed at home and coulda/woulda/shoulda beat at their place?


  • Vince Clortho

    It’ll be decided on the pitch, but the simple question and answer are:
    Does RSL have the potential to hang with Monterrey?

    Love JK’s attitude when being asked for his preferred opponent. He wants to play (and beat) the best. SO, bring it on….


  • BigLustythongGrl

    its gonna be a doozy. according to Wiki, Monterrey has never won concacaf CL or its predecessor. even a couple of haitians teams have won it over the years. there was even one team from suriname named transvaal (i think wiki entry writer confused concacaf w/s. africa). anyway, my family is from monterrey/rio grande region and i went to a couple of rayados games as a teenager, so I’m going w/RSL. hehe. i hate los mexicans. imagine a dark-skinned mex/amer in a raccoon hat and pro-US shirt at a US national game. thats me.


  • Dan

    I’m curious if all of the people giving RSL a 50/50 AT BEST have watched any of their games, or if they like so many just assume an MLS team must by nature be worse than a mighty Mexican team. Real scored 7 goals home/away against Cruz Azul, and Real’s defense is better than their offense. Monterrey better hope for a huge game at home, because when they get to Rio Tinto, they are going to have to come in with a big advantage on the board.


  • Dan

    Care to explain why Monterrey would be the favorite? Because you say it like its clear, while frankly, there it is no such thing.


  • Charles

    Should be a great final, between the two best teams.

    Having seen both of them play many times and in person. I give a slight advantage to Salt Lake.


  • Neruda

    Yea good point. He pointed to Monterrey as a new challenge he would prefer to tackle. With Cruz Azul it’s been there, done that. Oh and his team has taken on his fearless persona too.


  • Neruda

    RSL is going to represent MLS but this isn’t a team full of flat footed yankees. According to keepinitrealsoccer.com RSL boasts a large number of foreign players from many different nations. Many of these are starters who have played in different top leagues. JK’s style of play reflects this international flavor.

    Fabian Espindola
    Nelson Gonzalez
    Javier Morales

    Paulo Jr.

    Will Johnson
    Andy Williams

    Jamison Olave

    Costa Rica
    Alvaro Saborio

    Robbie Russell

    Jean Alexandre


  • Neruda

    Yea Where’s Waldo Ponce had his hands on the back of a player in the box but the Monterrey player “se tiró” (flopped to the ground) without question. What a joke.


  • Jake

    That was Cruz Azual B team that lost to RSL, and its B/C that beat RSL. Anyways you can’t compare styles, Cruz Azul plays attacking football while RSL plays defesive counter-attacking football. Should be a completely different the game.


  • Test

    Monterrey beats 3-0 salt lake and ties 1-1 at rio tinto I bet 1 billion dollar if I had it.


  • idaho brian

    RSL does not play defensive counter attacking football…not sure what team you have been watching.


  • Idaho Brian

    I wouldn’t have agreed with your shot in the dark guess…but because you said you would bet 1 billion imaginary dollars on such an outcome, perhaps I should reconsider due to your uncanny powers of prognostication…

    However, after careful consideration…i will take your bet and raise you 1 trillion dollars.


  • RioT in progress

    RSL’s B team beat CA’s B team. CA’s B/C team as you call them needed Javi to be subbbed off in the 70th minute and a torrential downpour to beat RSL.

    And of course you can compare styles.


  • JCC

    I actually think it’s RSL’s foreign players that make the team so formidable. The Americans on that team are okay, but it’s non-US players that make RSL a cut above the rest of the MLS teams. This should be a model that more MLS teams should follow. Less Americans, more foreigners, that’s the only way we can be competitive in the CCL.


  • Hoser McKenzie

    Suazo is slow and ill-proportioned.

    Olave and Borchers will eat his lunch.


  • JW

    The final of the CCL begins tonight at 10 pm sharp as Monterrey tries to capitalize on their home advantage over RSL in the first leg. CONCACAF TV will be covering all the action from the first whistle. Be sure to register if you haven’t already. Click here to register for FREE: http://tinyurl.com/3k4ugct


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