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Alajuelense

Club America throw down gauntlet in CONCACAF Champions League

Osvaldo Martinez and Club America are one step closer to their sixth CONCACAF championship following Wednesday's 3-0 win at Saprissa.
Osvaldo Martinez and Club America are one step closer to their sixth CONCACAF championship following Wednesday's 3-0 win at Saprissa.

The first legs of the CONCACAF Champions League are in the books with two teams -- Club America and Alajuelense -- all but booked for the semifinals, while the other two series are still very much up for grabs. Here are five takeaways from the week that was in the CCL.

1. Club America ruthlessly punish Saprissa

For a good stretch Saprissa were the dominant of the two sides in their Wednesday encounter with America. Playing in front of a frenzied crowd, the Costa Ricans swarmed the Mexican champions...

Costa Rica's Alajuelense beat D.C. United 5-2 as Jose Ortiz scores twice

AlajuelenseAlajuelense
DC UnitedDC United
5
2
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Jose Guillermo Ortiz scored twice as Costa Rican club Alajuelense beat D.C. United 5-2 in their CONCACAF Champions League first leg match in San Jose.

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica -- Costa Rica's Alajuelense beat D.C. United 5-2 Thursday in the first leg of a two-match CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal.

Alajuelense rolled over the American team helped by two goals by Jose Guillermo Ortiz.

The hosts moved ahead when Armando Alonso scored on a penalty kick past DC goalkeeper Andrew Dykstra at 15 minutes.

Six minutes later, Ortiz scored on a pass from Ronald Matarrita, but United came back two minutes later on a header by Fabian Espindola.

Johan Venegas...

DC United, America seek CONCACAF Champions League semifinals

After winning a CONCACAF championship in 1998 as a DC United player, Ben Olsen is looking to pull off the same feat as the club's coach.
After winning a CONCACAF championship in 1998 as a DC United player, Ben Olsen is looking to pull off the same feat as the club's coach.

For the first time since the 2010-11 edition, the CONCACAF Champions League will begin its quarterfinal round in the month of February, much to the dismay of Major League Soccer sides Montreal Impact and DC United. While their quarterfinal counterparts from Costa Rica, Mexico and Honduras are well into their respective campaigns, the MLS pair will play their first official matches of 2015 this week, making their first-leg contests away from home that much more challenging. Here's a look inside...