The LA Galaxy will play the Puerto Rico Islanders in the Preliminary Round of the 2010-2011 CONCACAF Champions League when the third edition of the tournament begins in July. The tournament will begin July 27-29 with the first leg of the Preliminary Round and the second leg a week later. The winners will advance to the Group Stage, which is set for August 17-19.
"Puerto Rico is a team with proven success in the USSF Division-2 Pro League and we are looking forward to opening our Champions League campaign against them,” LA Galaxy General Manager and Head Coach Bruce Arena said. “They have had success in this tournament in the past and have an experienced manager in Colin Clarke, so they will present a difficult challenge for us."
The draw conducted Wednesday by deputy general secretaries Ted Howard and Italo Zanzi at the confederation’s New York headquarters set the Preliminary Round pairings and matchups for the Group Stage.
Other Preliminary Round matches will have two-time runner-up Cruz Azul of Mexico against Panama’s San Francisco, the Mexican Clausura runner-up -- either Santos or Toluca -- facing San Juan Jabloteh of Trinidad, Costa Rica’s Brujas facing Joe Public of Trinidad, the Canadian champion – either Toronto FC or the Vancouver Whitecaps – against Motagua of Honduras, and Xelaju of Guatemala against a Central America club.
The Seattle Sounders will face an as yet-to-be determined Central American side in the Preliminary Round, while Marathon – a quarterfinalist this past season – will take on Tauro FC of Panama.
Two berths originally were allocated to El Salvador, but FIFA has suspended the country due to governmental interference in the federation’s affairs. The government has until June 8 to comply with FIFA’s non-intervention requirements or its teams will be barred from international competition, including the Champions League – and its berths will be reassigned.
The winner of the Galaxy-Islanders series will be placed in Group D, which will include the Mexican Clausura champ, either Santos or Toluca, Olimpia of Honduras and the Central America 11-Xelaju winner
Group A will consist of MLS champion Real Salt Lake, Arabe Unido of Panama, the Cruz Azul-San Francisco winner and the winner between the Canadian champion and Motagua.
Group B will have 2009 Supporter Shield winner Columbus Crew, Municipal of Guatemala, the winner between Jabloteh and Toluca/Santos, and either Brujas or Joe Public.
Mexican Apertura champion Monterrey will head Group C, potentially the most difficult, with Costa Rica’s Saprissa, the Seattle-Central America 12 winner and either Tauro or Marathon.
Below are the full results of today’s draw:
(Host of first leg listed first)
Central America 11 vs. Xelaju (GUA)
Brujas (CRC) vs. Joe Public (TRI)
San Juan Jabloteh (TRI) vs. Santos-Toluca (Mexican Clausura runner-up)
San Francisco (PAN) vs. Cruz Azul (MEX)
Los Angeles Galaxy (USA) vs. Puerto Rico Islanders (PUR)
Tauro FC (PAN) vs. Marathon (HON)
Seattle Sounders (USA) vs. Central America 12
Toronto-Vancouver (Canadian champion) vs. Motagua (HON)
Real Salt Lake (USA)
Arabe Unido (PAN)
San Francisco/Cruz Azul winner
Columbus Crew (USA)
San Juan Jabloteh/Santos-Toluca (Mexican Clausura runner-up) winner
Brujas/Joe Public winner
Seattle/Central America 12 winner
Santos/Toluca (Mexican Clausura champion)
Los Angeles Galaxy/Puerto Rico Islanders winner
Central America 11/Xelaju winner