Wednesday, April 18

CONCACAF Champions League starts tonight

While there is not the appeal of  a Major League Soccer team in this year’s final of the CCL, fans throughout the United States and Canada should still tune in to watch the championship series tonight and next Wednesday because Monterrey and Santos Laguna have continually been among the most exciting throughout the tournament this year.

Oh, and there is American Herculez Gomez who could very well be named the tournament MVP with another standout performance. He has been a star for the club, starting games instead of coming off the bench as he has done with his two previous Mexican clubs.

I am not going to try to match what is an excellent preview from Fox Soccer’s Ives Galarcep, who points out among many interesting items that Monterrey is attempting to become only the fourth repeat champion as the confederation’s club champion.

Speaking of Tournament MVP...

CONCACAF announced today that is anointing a Player of the Tournament for the first time in tournament history. And, it is giving 50 percent of the vote to fans via Facebook. CONCACAF will select what it considers the top six players so far for fans to vote for. The poll will begin April 19.

To me that seems like an awfully big percentage to me for fans to have for what should be one of the confederation’s most prestigious honors. Add in the fact that the only media allowed to vote will be those attending the second leg of the series (in Torreon, Mexico) will be able to vote for the other half ensures that the winner will undoubtedly be from one of the two clubs playing in the final, especially since both clubs are Mexican. What if an MLS player had twice as many goals or an MLS goalkeeper had all shutouts until losing by one goal in a semifinal series, the odds of earning the honor would be far smaller. But all performance scenarios aside, American/Canadian media don’t really travel that much either, so even if an MLS club were playing in the tournament and the second leg was in Mexico, it would be unfairly skewed.

CONCACAF may have plenty of cash flowing around, but it needs to remember that not all of the independent soccer media, particularly above the Rio Grande, have the budgets that allow for travel.

All that being said... WHO WOULD YOU CHOOSE?

Four players have 6 goals... Peralta (Santos), Gomez (Santos), Plata (Toronto), Barbosa (Herediano)  [Scoring Table +]  Or would you go with someone else?

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