NYCFC kick off CONCACAF Champions League campaign against Santos

Just two months after winning the MLS Cup, the New York City Football Club begins its quest for supremacy beyond the United States and Canada.

And after breaking a nearly decade-long title drought in New York, they’re looking to snap another bigger streak without a trophy.

NYCFC kick off their CONCACAF Champions League campaign Tuesday night on the road against Costa Rican side Santos de Guapiles (8 p.m., FS2). The defending MLS champions have qualified for the region’s most prestigious competition, which pits the top 16 teams in the region against each other.

“It’s more about our performance and how we come into the game because we’re so confident that we know when we’re at our best we can beat them and beat almost anyone,” NYCFC head coach Ronny Deila told reporters on Monday. .

The CONCACAF qualifying region includes teams from Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean. Each round consists of two legs – one home and one away, with the aggregate score being used to determine who advances.

NYCFC aims to become the first-ever MLS team to win the competition.

NYCFC celebrate their MLS Cup at New York City Hall.
Gabriele Holtermann-Gorden/Sipa

The first leg kicks off at Estadio Nacional in Costa Rica, before NYCFC head “home” a week later to Banc of California Stadium in Los Angeles for the second leg. Yankee Stadium – NYCFC’s usual home – is not CONCACAF approved and Red Bull Stadium is undergoing renovations. NYCFC plays the Galaxy four days after the rematch, allowing them to stay in the region.

“It’s going to be a tough game,” Deila said. “It’s a big, big game for Santos, of course, coming so far in the Champions League and New York coming to visit, so we know they’re going to come with a lot of energy. So we have to be ready for that: fighting, winning challenges, sticking together and being very, very difficult to face, and that was our strength last year.

New York Post

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