Seattle Sounders qualify for fifth appearance in CONCACAF Champions League

The Seattle Sounders are headed back to the CONCACAF Champions League.

The Sounders’ MLS Cup championship assured them a spot in the 2017-18 CONCACAF Champions League beginning next summer, the Sounders’ fifth appearance in the tournament to decide the best club team in the region.

The Sounders, who won Saturday's MLS Cup with a 5-4 penalty shootout victory after 120 minutes of scoreless soccer against Toronto FC at BMO Field, are the fifth and final MLS team to qualify for the 2017-18 CCL tournament.

The Sounders have reached the knockout stage the last three times they have participated, with a semifinal finish in 2012-13 their best placing in the tournament to date.

They were eliminated by Mexican side Club America in the knockout round of the 2015-16 edition of the tournament earlier this year.

The Sounders join their MLS Cup opponents, Toronto, in the 2017-18 CCL, as TFC won the 2016 Amway Canadian Championship to take the spot reserved for Canadian teams in the tournament. Joining them will be 2016 US Open Cup champions FC Dallas, MLS Eastern Conference regular season winner New York Red Bulls, and the Colorado Rapids, who finished second in the Supporters' Shield behind FC Dallas and thereby take that competition's slot in the Champions League.