CONCACAF Forms Its Own Champions League

Author: 
Andrew Giffen
Date Published: 
2001-10-12
Source: 
soccerage.com

In keeping with traditions involving other football confederations around the world, the Football Confederation (aka CONCACAF), has devised its own league of champions to begin play in 2002.

The birth of the FC Champions’ Cup will feature a league format with the top 16 clubs from throughout North America, Central America and the Caribbean. It is an effort to be on par with such competitions as the UEFA Champions League, the Toyota Copa Libertadores and the CAF Champions League.

In an official statement Chuck Blazer, the General Secretary of the Football Confederation said, "This new structure will revitalize our club competitions and take them to a new level in terms of prestige and excitement for all the parts of our Confederation – the clubs involved, our partners, and most importantly, the fans. Just as the Gold Cup has become the Confederation’s signature event for national teams over the last decade, the new format will do the same for the Champions’ Cup."

Thirteen of the initial 16 participants have already been determined. They are:
PARTICIPANTS (LEAGUE STAGE)
CA Monarcas Morelia (Mexico; winner 2000 Torneo Invierno)
Club Santos Laguna (Mexico, winner 2001 Torneo Verano)
Kansas City Wizards (USA, winner 2000 MLS Cup)
Chicago Fire (USA, winner, 2000 MLS Supporters’ Shield)
Club América (Mexico, winner 2001 FC Giants Cup)
D.C. United (USA, runner-up 2001 FC Giants Cup)
CSD Municipal (Guatemala, first place Central Zone final round)
Deportivo Saprissa (Costa Rica, second place Central Zone final round)
CD Olimpia (Honduras, third place Central Zone final round)
CSD Comunicaciones (Guatemala, fourth place Central Zone final round)
Tauro FC (Panama, Central Zone semifinalist)
LD Alajuelense (Costa Rica, Central Zone semifinalist)
Defence Force FC (Trinidad & Tobago, finalist Caribbean Zone qualifying)

Another representative each from the Caribbean, from Mexico and from the United States have yet to be determined and will round out the 16 total participants.