Action from the August 7, 2013, CONCACAF Champions League game between Club America (left) and host Sporting San Miguelito, played at the Estadio Rommel Fernandez in Panama City, Panama. (Photo: Mexsport)
MEXICO CITY – Club America is aiming to take over as the Group 4 leader, when it hosts a CONCACAF Champions League game for a first-ever time on Tuesday against Sporting San Miguelito. The Aguilas want to put in the rearview mirror a 1-0 loss at Alajuelense in their last CCL outing on August 29.
All three sides are completely even on points (3 each) and tie-breakers in the three-team group.
During a Sunday press conference, America goalkeeper Hugo Gonzalez explained that his team will play to win and look to score as many goals as possible for potential goal-difference considerations.
“For us, we are simply interested in winning, and if it is by a lot of goals that’s good because sometimes match circumstances can become complicated,” he said. “We have to win this one and the next one to ensure our passage and not gift anything, which is what we always set out to do, win by any means.”
The five-time CONCACAF club champion already knows how to beat Sporting. They met on August 7 in Panama and the Mexico City-based squad won 1-0 thanks to a Christian Bermudez goal. That result gives America confidence heading into the fixture at the Estadio Azteca.
“We should do what we did in Panama, play while having the ball, attack them, make them run, tire them and that will have an effect on them,” declared Gonzalez.
For Sporting SM, it will be a historic evening. The 2013 Panamanian Clausura champion will play its first CCL match on foreign turf and will remain in contention for a quarterfinal berth regardless of the final score.
In the Panamanian league, Sporting experienced a difficult start to the new season, but has recovered its form with four points in its last two contests. A 3-0 triumph on Saturday over Chorrillo FC – John Pretelt, Aramis Haywood and Eric Davis scored all the goals in the first half -- lifted it into a tie for sixth place.