According to MLSSoccer.com, the LA Galaxy's 1-0 victory over the Houston Dynamo in the MLS Cup final has assured the Seattle Sounders passage to the group stage of the CONCACAF Champions League. If true, that will allow the Sounders to bypass the always tricky play-in round, saving them a trip to Central America and easing fixture congestion in what has been a pretty tricky part of the schedule these past two seasons. The automatic advancement to the group stage will also improve the Sounders CCL seeding, hopefully giving them a slightly easier path to the knockout phase next season.
That should take some sting out of watching Western Conference rivals LA Galaxy lift the MLS Cup after an unconvincing win over a poor Houston Dynamo side. Well, probably not now. At the moment it's still really annoying. But in six months or so, when Real Salt Lake are flying to El Salvador or Panama to play their way into the group stage, it will likely be some comfort. Or at least we'll pretend like it is.