The Seattle Sounders are taking on New York City FC on Wednesday in Leg Two of the Concacaf Champions League Semifinals. Here is everything you need to know:
WHEN AND WHERE: Kickoff is at 6 p.m. PT at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, N.J.
WHERE TO WATCH: The match will be televised on FS1 and TUDN.
WHERE TO LISTEN: The match will air on 950 KJR and El Rey 1360 AM.
LEG ONE RESULT: The Sounders defeated NYCFC 3-1 at Lumen Field in the first leg last Wednesday. Newcomer Albert Rusnák finished in style in the 16th minute before Thiago Andrade equalized for the visitors in the 27th minute. Seattle retook the lead seven minutes later when Jordan Morris found the back of the net and then earned an important third goal in the 68th minute when Nicolás Lodeiro converted from the penalty spot.
ADVANCEMENT SCENARIOS: With the away goals rule in effect, the most common score line that would send NYC through would be a 2-0 win. If the match finishes with a 3-1 NYC win, it would head straight to penalty kicks. If the Sounders win outright, draw, lose 1-0 or score at least two goals and lose by no more than two goals (e.g. 4-2, 5-3, etc.), then they would advance to the CCL Final.
WHAT’S AT STAKE: The winner of this semifinal series will become just the fifth MLS team to advance to the CCL final since the tournament restructured in 2008. The Sounders are looking to become the first MLS team to win CCL and represent Concacaf at the FIFA Club World Cup.
RUSNÁK OPENS HIS ACCOUNT: Designated Player Albert Rusnák scored his first goal in his 10th match for the Sounders in Leg One, a great sign moving forward to alleviate some pressure. Rusnák was fantastic operating as No. 8 in central midfield next to João Paulo and will need to have another massive match as both an outlet and provider on Wednesday.
RAGEN THRIVING: In the absence of the injured Yeimar, rookie center back Jackson Ragen has slotted in seamlessly alongside veteran Xavier Arreaga. Ragen was baptized by fire when he started in Mexico at Club León in the CCL Quarterfinals, and he’ll need another strong performance at NYCFC as well.
MAXI QUESTION MARK: New York City was dealt a big blow the night before Leg One when Designated Player Maxi Moralez suffered what was referred to as a trunk injury in training. He missed the opening match, and it’s unknown whether he’ll be recovered in time for Wednesday. The 35-year-old Argentine is one of the league’s best playmakers and has 24 goals and 60 assists in 138 career MLS matches.
KEEP CASTELLANOS QUIET: If Moralez can’t play, more of the onus falls on forward Taty Castellanos to get NYCFC back into the series. The reigning MLS Golden Boot winner has already scored four times in CCL play, but the Sounders kept him off the score sheet in Leg One. If they do that again, the Sounders could be very well on their way to the CCL Final.
GET YOUR TICKETS FOR INTER MIAMI
We host Inter Miami and former Homegrown Player DeAndre Yedlin for the first time at Lumen Field on April 16. Get your tickets today!