FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 01: Fredy Montero #17 of the Seattle Sounders FC celebrates his goal in the first half against the New England Revolution on October 1, 2011 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

CONCACAF Champions League 2012-13: Sounders, Olimpia Earn Expected Wins

Seattle and Olimpia showed why they were the favorites with easy wins, while Xelaju came back from two goals down to draw, 2-2.

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Seattle Sounders Vs. Caledonia, 2012 CONCACAF Champions League: Sounders Sloppy, Win Easily

The Seattle Sounders haven't been playing their best of late and weren't near their best on Thursday night in their 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions League opener, but it didn't matter. They were still much better than their opponents from Trinidad and Tobago, Caledonia, and walked away with a comfortable 3-1 win at CenturyLink Field.

After a slow start, Seattle began to find their footing and then found their way onto the scoreboard in the 19th minute. Sammy Ochoa did the honors, curling a shot low and beating Glenroy Samuel and giving the Sounders a lead.

The Sounders' second goal was a peach, with Cordell Cato doing the bulk of the work with a clever run that unlocked the Caledonia defense. Eventually, he fed Andy Rose, who crossed for the unmarked Fredy Montero to back heel into the empty net for a 2-0 lead.

Before the halftime whistle could go, Seattle added one more goal. Rose, who had assists on the first two goals and played very well all night, hopped on a free rebound and knocked it home in the 43rd minute, essentially turning out the lights on Caledonia.

A penalty that was iffy at best gave Caledonia a second half goal and in a three-team group with only the group winner advancing, that goal could become a big deal if it goes to goal difference, but it didn't threaten the outcome. Seattle was far and away the better side, even if they weren't close to top form, and got all three points to show for it.


Olimpia Vs. CD FAS, 2012 CONCACAF Champions League: Olimpia Races Past FAS, 3-0

CD FAS went to Honduras hoping to pull off an upset and pick up at least a point, but that dream was dead after 16 minutes. Luciano Emilio and Juan Carlos Garcia scored before FAS could get their feet under them and then FAS had a men sent off, ending their chances at a result as Olimpia cruised to a 3-0 win in CONCACAF Champions League action.

Emilio scored his goal before FAS could even blink, notching the opening tally in the second minute. FAS couldn't clear Olimpia's corner kick and Emilio pounded on the loose ball, knocking it home and handing the Hondurans an early lead.

Olimpia capitalized on another corner kick 14 minutes later, although this one wasn't as tough as the scrum in front on the first goal. Garcia was just left completely unmarked, allowing him to rise and head home the corner kick.

Just when FAS looked like they were showing life in the second half, Raul Renderos was sent off and the match was all but over. Renderos came in late and high on Roger Rojas, earning himself a deserved red card. Rojas then got his revenge with a goal of his own late as Olimpia got off to a dream start in the Champions League.


W Connection Vs. Xelaju, 2012 CONCACAF Champions League: Guatemalans Come Back T Draw

With his Xelaju team seemingly dead in the water, Edgar Chinchilla stepped up an almost single-handedly earned his team a 2-2 draw in the final 16 minutes against W Connection. Xelaju was down 2-0 in Trinidad and Tobago, but 74th and 89th minute goals by Chinchiilla brought Xelaju from behind and delivered a point to the Guatemalans in their opener CONCACAF Champions League match.

Hachim Arcia put W Connection in front in the 23rd minute when he pounced on a deflected cross and buried the ball for the opening goal. Later in the half Rennie Britto doubled W Connection's lead as the home side looked nothing like a team that had not played a competitive match in more than a month.

W Connection kept playing pretty well, but when they faded late, Chinchilla took advantage. His first goal was a simple finish that caught the underside of the bar before going in, but the second goal was very impressive. He brought down a long ball and got to the edge of the box before ripping a great shot that earned the visitors a come from behind road draw.

As much fun as Xelaju's comeback was, it is not a result that will please them, W Connection or really any neutral. Chivas is the favorite to run away from the pack in Group 8 and Xelaju or W Connection needed three points to keep this group interesting. This sucks.


Metapan Vs. Puerto Rico Islanders, 2012 CONCACAF Champions League: 10-Man Islanders Go Down

The Puerto Rico Islanders were not supposed to be able to keep up with Metapan, especially in El Salvador, but nobody told them that. They dominated the early going and actually went ahead, 1-0, but a 35th-minute red card doomed them and opened the door for Nicolas Munoz and he barged through. Munoz scored three times in the second half for Metapan as Puerto Rico fell 3-1 in Central America.

After 25 minutes of good play and being the better team, the Islanders were rewarded with a goal. Nick Addlery did it mostly on his own, chesting down a ball and doing well to create space before firing past Fidel Mondragon for the lead.

The Islanders' excitement lasted only10 minutes. Jay Needham was seen putting a forearm in the face of Jorge Ramirez. The referee saw it and sent him off, putting Puerto Rico down a man for 55 minutes.

Up a man, Metapan controlled the second half and in the 52nd minute they equalized. Munoz got free and Alfredo Pacheco found him with a cross, leaving him with a simple headed finish to get Metapan back on level terms. Eight minutes later he got his second when he headed home a corner kick and then he capped his magnificent day in the 88th minute with a sliding finish of Paolo Suarez's cross. It was three goals for Munoz and three points for Metapan.


UANL Tigres Vs. Real Esteli, 2012 CONCACAF Champions League: Tigres Smash Nicaraguans, 4-0

UANL Tigres may have been in their very first CONCACAF Champions League match, but experience wasn't really a factor against Real Esteli. They destroyed their Nicaraguan opponents, 4-0, with two goals on each side of halftime to get off to a flying start in the competition they are considered one of the favorites in.

After strong play early on that Tigres couldn't turn into a goal, Edno Cunha finally got the home side a lead in the 35th minute when he knocked in an Alan Pulido header. Pulido's header was actually a shot off of a good cross from Alberto Acosta and it was going to go over the line by itself, but Cunha got there and stole the goal by hitting it over himself.

Once they got on the scoreboard, Tigres were a runaway train. Eight minutes later, Fernando Navarro doubled their lead. As was the case with the first goal, Acosta was involved as his good shot resulted in a rebound that Navarro got to and finished, giving the favorites a two-goal halftime lead.

The second half didn't see Tigres pressure Esteli as much because they didn't have to. They were in complete control and even without pressing Tigres still forced a couple good saves from Justo Lorente. Taufic Guarch finally beat Lorente in the 80th minute and then Jose Rivas added one more later on, as Tigres made their Champions League debut count.


Toronto FC Vs. CD Aguila, 2012 CONCACAF Champions League: TFC Dominates In 5-1 Win

Toronto FC may be an embarrassment in MLS play, but they somehow manage to show well in the COCNACAF Champions League. They are likely to miss the MLS playoffs for the sixth time in as many years since joining the league, but on the heels of making the semifinals of last year's Champions League, Toronto whooped CD Aguila, 5-1, on Wednesday to open up their 2012-2013 Champions League campaign.

Luis Silva opened the scoring for Toronto when he was able to redirect a corner kick on goal for a fine goal in the ninth minute. Eight minutes later, Silva combined with Reggie Lambe on a gorgeous one-two that saw Silva eventually find Lambe, who finished smartly at the far post to double the Reds' lead.

Up 2-0 it looked like Toronto would run away with the match, but they didn't, at least not right away. Milos Kocic spilled a rebound right in front of goal and Yaikel Perez got their first to knock it in.

With their lead cut to 2-1, Toronto could have panicked. Instead they just stepped on the gas pedal and ran over their visitors from El Salvador.

Terry Dunfield restored TFC's two-goal lead when Ashtone Morgan's cross found his shin and bounced in just before halftime. The second half was more of the same for Toronto as Reggie Lambe and Ryan Johnson each found the net to finish off a dominating win for the Reds.


Herediano Vs. Real Salt Lake, 2012 CONCACAF Champions League: 10-Man RSL Fall, 1-0

The last time that Real Salt Lake competed in the CONCACAF Champions League they were in the 2011 final, which they lost to Monterrey. On Tuesday they made their return to the competition, but it didn't go the way they wanted. They conceded in the 14th minute then had a man sent off in the 58th minute as Herediano topped their MLS opponents, 1-0, in Costa Rica.

Herediano's goal came courtesy of a mistake by the usually dependable Kyle Beckerman. A slip and fall by the midfielder opened up space in the middle of the field, which Elias Aguilar stepped into and took advantage of, knocking his shot past Nick Rimando for the only tally of the match.

While it may have taken a miscue to get it, the goal was completely deserved for Herediano. They dominated the early part of the match, earned corners and created chances so when they scored, it felt fair.

RSL's best chance of the match came in the 30th minute when Fabian Espindola beat the goalkeeper, but just missed the post. Besides that, they struggled to create chances and when Nat Borchers was sent off just before the hour mark for a two-footed tackle, their hopes were extinguished. Things did manage to get even worse for Salt Lake too, as Jamison Olave went off with an injury to further weaken their defense.

All in all, it was a disastrous return to the competition for RSL as they lost, had Borchers sent off and suspended for their next match and saw Olave get hurt. Meanwhile, Herediano have all three points and are now the favorites to come out of Group 2.


Monterrey Vs. Chorrillo, 2012 CONCACAF Champions League: Two-Time Defending Champions Win, 5-0

Monterrey were supposed to begin their 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions League campaign with their second team because that is really all it would have taken to beat Chorrillo at home. Instead, they sent out their best team to take on their Panamanian opponents and the two-time defending champions didn't just win, they crushed Chorrillo, 5-0, to start off their tournament perfectly.

Jose Maria Basanta and Angel Reyna did most of the work for Monterrey, scoring twice each at Estadio Tecnologico. The scoring started in the eighth minute when Basanta found himself unmarked on a corner kick, giving himself an easy minute. Just before the halftime whistle, Reyna got on the scoresheet and the home side were 2-0 up at the break.

The Rayados completely dominated the match from the beginning and could have scored more than two in the first half. They were just as dominant in the second half too, but it took until the final 13 minutes before they got back on the scoreboard. Basanta and Reyna each added their second goal of the match and Dario Carreno added one of his own as Monterrey showed Chorrillo what Champions League quality play looks like, and top flight Champions League play at that.

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