• Friday Sep 27, 2013

    Alajuelense tops Sporting SM, waits for America

    Action from the CONCACAF Champions League match between host Alajuelense (right) and Sporting San Miguelito on September 26, 2013, in Alajuela, Costa Rica. (Photo: Imagenes en Costa Rica)

     

    ALAJUELA, Costa Rica -- Alajuelense positioned itself for a chance to reach the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals for the first time with a 2-0 Group 4 win over Sporting San Miguelito on Thursday at the Estadio Alejandro Morera Soto Scotiabank.
     
    Jerry Palacios struck for the first goal and set-up substitute Alejandro Alipizar's tally for the Costa Rican side (2-0-1, six points), which will need only a draw in its October 22 group finale at Club America (2-0-1, 6 points) to progress to the knockout phase.  The result eliminated Sporting (1-0-3, 3 points) from the competition.
     
    The Manudos, who defeated visiting Club America 1-0 last month, have never lost a CCL game at home, improving to 6-2-0 in eight all-time outings.
     
    After a frustrating first half in which he had two near chances, Palacios finally solved goalkeeper Humberto Pelaez in the 62nd minute. The Honduras international took a right-wing feed from Alvaro Sanchez and beat Pelaez to the far right post for a 1-0 lead.
     
    Palacios helped the host to a second goal in the 76th minute as he fed Alipizar a short pass that he deposited to the left of Pelaez from close range. It was the 34-year-old’s fifth career CCL goal, scored with three different teams.
     
    Alipizar could have added a third goal, but he was denied by Pelaez from point-blank range in the 90th minute.

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