The LA Galaxy have clinched a berth in the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals and they didn't even need to kick a ball to do so.
With the Puerto Rico Islanders 3-0 victory over Isidro Metapán in Puerto Rico on Thursday, the Galaxy have sealed the top spot in CCL group 5. The Galaxy close out the group stages on Oct. 25 against Metapán in El Salvador and even though LA have qualified for the quarterfinals, their match against Metapán will still be vital in determining the club's overall seeding for the knock out round.
Unlike past tournaments, the winners from the eight groups will be seeded according to their record, with the club with the best record taking on the club with the worst, the second best record taking on the seventh best and so on. If clubs have identical records after the group stage then the rankings will be determined by the following tie-breakers, listed in order: 1. Total goal difference, 2. Most goals Scored, 3. Most Goals Scored Away from home 4. Most Wins 5. Most Away Wins 6. Drawing of Lots. Remember that the club with the highest ranking will host the second leg of the quarterfinals series.
It remains to be seen what type of squad that head coach Bruce Arena will use in the final match in El Salvador as the game is in the middle of two important league games against the San Jose Earthquakes on Oct. 21 at Buck Shaw Stadium and the regular season finale against the Seattle Sounders on Oct. 28.
Based on the tie-breakers, if the CCL ended today, the quarterfinal stage would look like this:
1. Santos Laguna (MEX) vs. 8. Alajuelense (CRC)
2. Monterrey (MEX) vs. 7. Xelajú (GUAT)
3. Seattle Sounders (USA) vs. 6. Houston Dynamo (USA)
4. Herediano (CRC) vs. 5. LA Galaxy (USA)
Happy to see the Galaxy through to the quarterfinals? What type of squad do you expect Arena to use in El Salvador?
Share your thoughts below.