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Saprissa, Alajuelense qualify for Champions League

Costa Rica’s two most-popular soccer clubs will represent the country at the 2021 CONCACAF Champions League.

Deportivo Saprissa and Liga Deportiva Alajuelense qualified for the tournament thanks to their performances in the ongoing CONCACAF League. Both clubs earned a Champions League berth by reaching the CONCACAF League semifinals.

Saprissa will compete in the Champions League for a ninth time after defeating Marathón (Honduras), 2-0 on Tuesday:

Alajuelense will compete in the Champions League after defeating Real Estelí (Nicaragua), 2-1 on Wednesday:

The CONCACAF Champions League is the premier club competition for North America, Central America and the Caribbean, with Mexican teams dominating the tournament.

Saprissa were the last non-Mexican winners of the competition in 2005, while only two teams from MLS — Los Angeles Galaxy in 2000 and D.C. United in 1998 — have lifted the title.

Under the current format (2008-present), both Saprissa and Alajuelense have reached the semifinals.

The 2021 Champions League schedule has yet to be announced. The 2020 edition of the tournament began in February.

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