CARSON, Calif. (Friday, June 22, 2012) – The LA Galaxy will begin their participation in the 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions League at home against Isidro Metapan of El Salvador on Thursday, August 23 at 7 p.m. CONCACAF released the full scheduled for the Group Stage of the tournament today, with the Galaxy drawn into Group 5 along with the Salvadorian side and the NASL’s Puerto Rico Islanders.
The 24-team tournament is broken up into eight groups of three clubs with all teams playing a total of four games in the Group Stage, two at home and two on the road. The Group Stage is set to begin on Tuesday, July 31 and run through Thursday, October 25. After playing each other team in their group twice, the eight group leaders will move on to the tournament quarterfinals.
In Group 5, the Galaxy will face Isidro Metapan, the Salvadorian 2011 Apertura Champion, and the Puerto Rico Islanders who qualified as the third place team from the Caribbean Football Union Club Championship.
After the club opens the competition at The Home Depot Center against Isidro Metapan on Thursday, August 23, another home game awaits LA when they host the Puerto Rico Islanders on August 29 at 7 p.m.
The Galaxy will hit the road for the first time in the competition on Tuesday, September 18 when they visit Puerto Rico for a game that kicks off at 5 p.m. (PT). They will round out play in Group 5 with a visit to El Salvador to take on Isidro Metapan on Thursday, October 25 with kick off scheduled for 7 p.m. (PT).
A Champions League quarterfinalist during the 2011-12 tournament, the Galaxy qualified for this installment of the Champions League by winning MLS Cup 2011 last November. This will be LA’s third consecutive year participating in the CONCACAF Champions League, which will be played for the fifth time after replacing the CONCACAF Champions Cup in 2008. After being eliminated from the 2010-11 Champions League by the Puerto Rico Islanders in the Preliminary Round, the Galaxy emerged as Group A winners in the 2011-12 Champions League, beating Morelia of Mexico, LD Alajuelense of Costa Rica and Club Motagua of Honduras to qualify for the Quarterfinals, where they fell to Toronto FC 4-3 on aggregate.
Isidro Metapan, a Champions League quarterfinalist last season, features a roster that includes El Salvador National Team regulars Milton Molina, Ramon Sanchez and Alfredo Pacheco, who played for the New York Red Bulls in 2009. The club is currently coached by Edwin Portillo, who has led Metapan to six league titles since 2006, the most by any manager in Salvadorian league history.
For Puerto Rico, who play in the NASL, this is their fourth straight year qualifying for the Champions League. A semifinalist in the 2008-09 Champions League, the Islanders knocked the Galaxy out of the competition in 2010, winning 5-3 on aggregate in their Preliminary Round Series.
The Galaxy are back in action on Saturday, June 23 when they host Vancouver Whitecaps FC at The Home Depot Center. That game, which is presented by First 5 California, kicks off at 7:30 p.m. and tickets are on sale now. For more information about this game or to purchase tickets for any Galaxy home game, please visit the club’s official website at www.lagalaxy.com or call 877-342-5299.