Philadelphia Union is the last Major League Soccer side standing in this season’s CONCACAF Champions League after Portland Timbers lost 4-2 on aggregate to Club America.
With the quarterfinal poised at 1-1 from the first leg, Liga MX’s Club America sealed its place in the last four with a smooth 3-1 win over the Timbers, with Federico Vinas grabbing a double at the historic Estadio Azteca in Mexico City. The defeat marked an end to Portland’s run in the CCL — the furthest it has gone in the competition in its history.
Vinas broke the deadlock midway through the first half when Mauro Lainez sent a high cross into the six-yard box, and Vinas nodded in between two defenders. Lainez then put breathing space between the Liga MX side and its MLS rivals with a penalty just before the hour mark, coolly rolling left-footed into bottom corner.
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Diego Valeri then reduced the deficit for Portland a few minutes later with a penalty of his own — making him the club’s joint-highest scorer in the CCL in its history with four goals — but Club America hit back quickly. Leonardo Suarez made the game safe and sealed a fine win with a superb finish, scoring from 22-yards after beating two defenders at the top of the penalty area.
No Major League Soccer side has ever won the tournament in its existing format and the Union will look to change that, following its 4-1 aggregate victory over Atlanta United on Tuesday. That has set up a showdown with Club America in the two-legged semifinals, which will be contested in mid-August and mid-September. Monterrey faces Cruz Azul in the other semifinal.
Club America have won the Champions League twice in the last decade.