The CONCACAF Champions League may not boast as many clubs with household names, but it's not short on talent as North American foes Los Angeles Galaxy and El Salvador's Isidro Metapan square off on Wednesday.
The Galaxy come in 1-1-1 in their last three MLS matches, and they're searching for three points to help propel them to the top of Group 8. They trail Cartagines by a point but have two matches in hand.
Meanwhile, Metapan are looking to notch their first win of the Champions League group stage after a draw and loss in their opening two matches.
Let's take a look at everything you need to know for the Galaxy and Metapan showdown.
When: Wednesday, Sept. 18 at 10 p.m. ET
Where: StubHub Stadium, Carson, Calif.
Watch: Fox Sports 2, Univision Deportes (Mex.)
Live Stream: FoxSoccer2Go
In any tournament among North American soccer clubs, the L.A. Galaxy tend to be one of the most talked about contenders, and this year's CONCACAF Champions League is no exception.
However, the Galaxy come in nursing all sorts of issues, including an ankle injury to star midfielder and offensive juggernaut Landon Donovan that will keep him out of the Metapan match, according to Scott French of MLS.com.
Despite his absence from the upcoming tilt, the Galaxy star talked up the importance of the Champions League showdown, per the club's official site:
We’ve had a Champions League game so multiple games to stay pretty fit and it’s going to be a week where we have to use quite a bit of players. The Metapan game we have to win—we win that game and we’re in good shape in the group.
According to Thomas Floyd of Goal.com, the Galaxy are also facing issues with depth and energy, as many of their players are fresh off World Cup qualifying duty. Donovan admitted the issue after the club's draw to D.C. United:
I’m not exactly sure, but it seemed everyone was a little tired today,” Donovan said. “But that being said, we’re up a goal with eight minutes to go. We still had ourselves in a good position, and we’ve got to finish it off.
If the Galaxy want to come out with three points against their opponents from El Salvador, they'll need to make sure their legs are rested and ready to play a full-blown 90-minute match.
They may be fatigued, but a couple of days off combined with playing in front of their home fans will energize this Galaxy squad to victory.
Even if they're a little winded and even without Donovan, the talent gap is too much to overcome with Robbie Keane and more elite footballers who will be ready to get their club three points at home.
Galaxy 3, Metapan 1