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CCL Rewind: Galaxy roll to reach knockout phase, Dynamo move atop group by blanking W Connection

Bobby Boswell


The LA Galaxy sure made it look easy.

The Galaxy booked their place in the knockout phase of the CONCACAF Champions League on Wednesday night with a 3-0 road victory over Costa Rican side Cartagines. Jack McBean headed home the winner in the sixth minute for LA, who also received scoring contributions from Chandler Hoffman and Laurent Courtois.

The victory kept the Galaxy perfect with three wins in as many games in the competition and assured they would finish atop of Group 8 with one game to spare. Bruce Arena’s men round out group play with a road fixture against last-place Isidro Metapan on Oct. 24.

In the other CCL match involving an MLS team on Wednesday night, the Houston Dynamo moved one step closer to the next round of the competition with a 2-0 victory at home over W Connection. Jason Johnson scored a splendid winner in the first half and Bobby Boswell added an insurance tally in the second.

The result gave the Dynamo first place in Group 1 with seven points and all Houston needs to move on to the quarterfinals is a result in Panama against Arabe Unido on Oct. 24.

Here are the match highlights:






What do you think of these results? Impressed with the Galaxy’s victory? Do you see the Dynamo taking care of business in their next match to reach the knockout phase of the competition?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. I didn’t expect them to score any goals, but with Ice Cube, WC, and Mac 10 anchoring the back line, I thought W Connection had a chance at keeping a clean sheet. I guess Dynamo crossed ’em out and put a ‘K.’

  2. The best part about MLS teams winning in CCL….no whining about soccer in the US from trolls.

    I don’t know that I really like the “new” format that much. The knockout stage is better I guess, but the group stage is a little boring sometimes quite frankly. The Sounders-Monterrey group games were a ton of fun. I would have paid twice the ticket cost for those games.

    • I think the group stage has gotten better since it’s almost ‘win or go home.’ Taking only the top team from each group adds a bit more drama to the early rounds. CCL will always be a little boring since there just isn’t that much quality south of Mexico. There will always be at least one Group of (Bored to) Death. 🙂

      • hopefully that can change one day, the better the other leagues are in concacaf the better it’s for mls.

        perhaps canada can one day split and make their own league, that’s prob a million years away tho…

  3. “all Houston needs to move on to the quarterfinals is a result in Panama against Arabe Unido on Oct. 24”

    That is not a guaranteed point, but at least the Dynamo don’t have to go to Mexico to get a point..

  4. The Galaxy brought several starters to Costa Rica, but only Sarvas and Zardes saw any time. The reserves and bench players handles the Costa Rican squad handily and although Cartijenas possessed the ball over 60 percent of the time, they could never mount any sustained attacks and the Galaxy cruised. I think Arena wanted to get another goal. The Galaxy are one goal behind in goal differential to Cruz Azul and and Toluca, the other teams who are undefeated. I do believe that getting the top seed is a priority for the for the Galaxy. Last year, the Galaxy were seeded 4th, and so had to play Monterrey instead of Santos Laguna in the semi’s. These little things add up to and may result in a more favorable draw which may lead to a finals spot and maybe a CCL title, which has been a Galaxy priority for a few years.

    • Am I wrong in thinking that the Galaxy is the best chance for an MLS team to get to the CCL final? Last year I liked the depth and play of Real Salt Lake, but I don’t see the other MLS teams putting up much of a challenge this year.

      • Could really just depend on the seeding. Houston is pretty tough when the games really matter. If the Earthquakes sneak into the knock-out phase it could be a real battle, I can see some serious fights breaking out and some Mexican squads missing some key players for the next round after they beat the Quakes.

    • It’s encouraging to me that an MLS team is confident (and rightly so) that its reserves can go to Central America and get a result. Granted, it’s not the Azteca or Saprissa, but it seems like progress that Arena doesn’t have to roll out Donovan, Keane and company every time.

      • Yes, it says a lot for their depth. A most impressive win for the Galaxy and since so many of those who played last night are youngsters, it bodes very well for the future.

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