CONCACAF Champions League: Club America win big in opener, defending champs Cruz Azul in trouble
Liga MX giants Club América got a big win to start off their CONCACAF Champions League campaign, topping Puerto Rico Bayamón FC 6-1, but their crosstown rivals Cruz Azul, the defending champions did not fare so well in a 1-0 loss at Panamanian outfit Chorrillo.
Ventura Alvarado, a defender born in Phoenix, Arizona, got his first start for América since rejoining the club after a loan spell for Necaxa and scored the third goal of the rout, which was never even close with the home team up 4-0 by the 20th minute. Midfielder Moises Velasco picked up a goal and an assist in the contest, while 21-year-old forward Martin Zúñiga (above) netted a brace.
On-loan FC Dallas man Nicholas Walker scored the lone goal of the contest for Bayamón in the 60th minute. With Guatemala's Comunicaciones having beaten the Puerto Rican side 5-0, América moved to the top of Group 8 on goals scored.
Defending champions Cruz Azul, who kicked their campaign off last week with home draw against Costa Rica's Alajuelense, faced more tough resistance in the form of Panamanian side Chorrillo and finally conceded in the 70th minute after conceding a controversial penalty kick that was converted by Justin Arboleda.
Cruz Azul now have just one point through two of four group stage matches after their 1-1 draw at home against Alajuelense two weeks ago. They will likely need to get full points from their return game agaisnst Chorrillo (Sept. 16) and trip to Alajuelense (Oct. 21) to have a shot at defending their title in the knockout rounds.