The field for the 2016-17 edition of the CONCACAF Champions League is slowly coming together. This past weekend, the Caribbean Football Union Club Championship was concluded, determining three more of this season's (and next, from the perspective of MLS) CCL contenders.
Haiti's Don Bosco put home advantage (the final round of the CFU Club Championship was hosted in Haiti) to good use, beating Jamaica's Arnett Gardens in the third-place playoff to win through to CCL (and avenge last year's defeat at the same stage of the competition: Don Bosco was bested on that occasion by another Jamaican team, Montego Bay United).
The final, however, was contested by two Trinidadian teams for the second year running; by the same two Trinidadian teams, to be precise: Central FC and W Connection. The result was much the same also: Central won, advancing to CCL as the Caribbean's club champion for the second consecutive season.
And W Connection, the most successful team in CFU Club Championship history (three times winner; six times runner-up), once again advanced to CCL as the second-best side in the Caribbean.
Caribbean teams have mostly been group stage makeweights in recent years of CCL, but both W Connection and Central FC managed to win a home game in the 2015-16 edition. And fans of the New York Red Bulls will know not to take W Connection, in particular, too lightly.
This season's CCL will be RBNY's third appearance in the region's top club tournament. The Red Bulls' first trip to CCL, for the 2009-10 edition, was cut short in the Preliminary Round by...W Connection, who won 4-3 on aggregate over two legs. The Preliminary Round of CCL no longer exists, but W Connection most definitely does.
RBNY will find out its 2016-17 CCL group stage opponents on May 30.