Alajuelense poses for a team photo prior to its CONCACAF Champions League game against Club America on October 22, 2013, in Mexico City. (Photo: Mexsport)
ALAJUELA, Costa Rica – Though only three weeks of the 2014 Costa Rican Verano campaign are in the books, Alajuelense head coach Óscar Ramírez is already thinking about an opponent his team will face in March: Panama’s Arabe Unido.
The sides will square off in the quarterfinals of the CONCACAF Champions League (CCL) with the Manudos hosting the first leg on March 10at the Estadio Alejandro Morera Soto Scotiabank, before the action shifts to the Estadio Rommel Fernandez in Panama City ten days later.
Speaking to the local media, Ramirez revealed that he plans on making a scouting trip to Panama, where he will take the time to study the 2012 Panamanian Apertura champion.
“If there is a date in which I can travel there, I would be able to get for myself a first impression of the team,” said Ramirez. “The idea is to monitor them to see the references.
“I want to absorb everything in order to make decisions.”
The 49-year-old manager expects that Arabe Unido, which played Rio Abajo to a 0-0 draw in its season opener on Saturday, will be a difficult rival.
“It’s a team with a lot of bulk,” noted Ramirez. “They make a good defensive block. They are big.”
Alajuelense, which is 1-1-1 in domestic play, will be back in action on Saturday, when it takes on visiting Puntarenas.