It wasn’t to be for Toronto FC in the second leg of the CONCACAF Champions League final, as Guadalajara took home the title on penalties.
Guadalajara 1 (Pineda 19’)
Toronto FC 2 (Altidore 25’, Giovinco 44’)
(3-3 on aggregate, Guadalajara won 4-2 on penalties)
Coming into the game with a one goal deficit, Toronto needed to start well. However, it would be the Mexican side that got the first goal of the second leg. Orbelin Pineda made it 3-1 on aggregate before Toronto’s big guns fired them back into it. Jozy Altidore and Sebastian Giovinco both scored before the break to level the tie at 3-3.
After a goalless second half, the game went straight to penalties, where Guadalajara sealed victory. They went 4-for-4 from their spot-kicks, while Toronto missed twice. Jonathan Osorio, who was joint top scorer in the competition, hit the crossbar, while Michael Bradley fired his penalty over the top.
It was heartbreak for Toronto in the end, but they have to be proud of the run they have been on. They knocked out former Champions in both the quarter finals and semi finals. Down went Tigres UANL and Club America, before they agonisingly fell at the final hurdle. Guadalajara, on the other hand, won the competition for the first time since 1962, when it was called the CONCACAF Champions Cup. Their win in 2018 carries on the run of all Mexican winners since its inception as the CCL back in 2008.
Toronto’s focus will now turn to gaining ground on their Eastern conference rivals after falling behind, following their run in the CONCACAF Champions League. TFC will host Chicago Fire on Saturday.
Written by Matt Coles – (@MattJColes)