The day that seemed like it may never arrive is finally here: A team from MLS is Concacaf Champions League champion.
The Seattle Sounders defeated Pumas, 3-0, in the final second leg on Wednesday, clinching the title with a monumental result for MLS. It was the first time in the 14-year history of the competition that the winning team did not hail from Mexico.
After the Sounders drew 2-2 in Mexico City last week, Raul Ruidiaz scored a pair of goals and Nicolas Lodeiro added a late insurance strike to seal the continental championship with a 5-2 aggregate win.
The Sounders were the fifth MLS team to reach the final and the first to win. One of the strongest teams in recent MLS history, the Sounders saw their depth tested on Wednesday and they passed with flying colors.
Two of their top players, Nouhou Tolo and Joao Paulo, went out injured before the 30th minute. Sounders coach Brian Schmetzer opted to replace Paulo with 16-year-old Obed Vargas, who played well beyond his years.
It didn’t matter. The Sounders got a crucial goal before halftime and sealed the result with a late onslaught in front of a Concacaf Champions League-record crowd of 68,741 at Lumen Field.
SPORTS NEWSLETTER:Sign up now to get top sports headlines delivered daily
The Sounders will now turn their attention to the FIFA Club World Cup, having now become the first MLS side to ever qualify for the competition.