Soccer  > General Soccer  > Monterrey debuts in CCL with 1-0 win
August 18, 2010, 11:18 AM
MONTERREY, Mexico - Aldo De Negris scored midway through the first half and Monterrey made a winning debut in the CONCACAF Champions League with a 1-0 victory over Costa Rica's Saprissa on Tuesday.

The goal highlighted a dominating performance by the reigning Mexican Apertura champion, who remained unbeaten in five games this season.

It was the second loss in four days for Saprissa, which has struggled to a 1-1-2 start in the Costa Rican Apertura.

De Negris finally converted from Monterrey's dominant possession in the 25th minute. Osvaldo Martinez streaked down the right side of the penalty area, stopped quickly to create space for himself and sent a cross that De Negris turned in from just inside the six-yard box.

De Negris has played only eight minutes in Monterrey's four league games this season but has one goal, the finale of Saturday's 5-2 victory over Pumas.

Monterrey, which has the second-best record in the early going of the Mexican league with three wins and a draw, used five players in its lineup that started Saturday's victory over Pumas.

Los Rayados (the Stripes) dominated from the opening kickoff, including generating its first chance off Nery Cardozo's corner kick when Hector Morales headed it directly into goalkeeper Fausto Gonzalez, who blocked it with a reaction save.

They earned seven corners in the first half alone, and kept Gonzalez busy. Monterrey's best chance at a second goal came in the 31st minute when Abraham Carreno shed his defender and approached unmarked down the right side into the area.

He chipped the ball over Gonzales, who had left his line, but Saprissa captain Victor Cordero was trailing the play and cleared the ball off the line.

Monterrey was making its debut in the CONCACAF Champions League and first appearance in the confederation club championship since 2005, when it was eliminated by Saprissa in the semifinals of the CONCACAF Champions Cup.

Saprissa is making its third straight appearance in the Group Stage, where it won only once last year. It extended its winless streak away from home to six games in the Champions League, having lost every match since a 2-0 victory over D.C. United in its first game.

The Costa Rican side rarely had any possession in the offensive third, but finally created chances late from distance late in the first half, with Armando Alonso missing high and wide and Jervis Drummond hitting a deflected shot that bounced harmlessly into Monterrey goalkeeper Jonathan Orozco's hands.

It nearly had an equalizer in the 72nd, but the goal was voided for offside. A final effort by Walter Centeno was pushed wide by a diving Orozco in the 86th.

Down two, Meza inserted Torrado and Orozco in the second half to kickstart the offense, but Toronto's defense kept the two-time Champions League finalists at bay the rest of the game.


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