Sounders to face Santos Laguna in CCL for second straight year
Posted by: Matt Gaschk
The club will face the Mexican side in the tournament for the second year running - though this time in the semifinal.
After the Sounders FC’s 3-2 series win over Tigres UANL in their quarterfinal series in the CONCACAF Champions League on Tuesday, they awaited the winner of the series between the Houston Dynamo and Santos Laguna.
Head coach Sigi Schmid was asked after their match if he had a preference of opponent and while he didn’t commit one way or the other, he did say that the Sounders “have a score to settle with Santos.” In April, they will have a chance to settle that score, as they will look to make amends for a 6-1 loss in Torreon, Mexico, in the quarterfinal round last year.
On Wednesday night in Torreon, Santos finished off Houston 3-0 in the match to put away the Dynamo 3-1 in the series, setting up a rematch of the 2012 CCL quarterfinals beginning April 2-4 in Seattle and concluding April 9-11 in Mexico.
Santos equalized the series when Juan Pablo Rodriguez scored in the 23rd minute. Santos earned a penalty and goalkeeper Tally Hall blocked the spot kick from Rodriguez, but the rebound bounced out of his reach and Rodriguez pounced to tap-in the goal.
US National Team forward – and former A-League Sounder – Herculez Gomez put Santos into the lead in the 28th minute with his eighth career Champions League goal, making it 2-1 in the series. Finally, second-half substitute Marc Crosas put the game out of reach in the 77th minute for the 3-1 final tally.
Last year, the Sounders opened the season against Santos Laguna, winning the home leg 2-1 off of goals by David Estrada and Brad Evans, but the second leg was all Santos, as they jumped out to a 2-1 halftime lead, then opened the floodgates with four second-half goals for the 6-1 win in the match and 7-3 win in the series.