23 Thoughts: USA-Mexico reaches club level

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Tigres players celebrate their 3-1 win over Toronto FC in Wednesday’s inaugural Campeones Cup between the MLS and Mexican champs.

Doug McIntyre’s weekly MLS column, 23 Thoughts, parses through the latest insights and inside info from around American soccer.” data-reactid=”31″>Doug McIntyre’s weekly MLS column, 23 Thoughts, parses through the latest insights and inside info from around American soccer.

can’t really be faulted for staying away from TFC’s BMO Field in droves. But to the teams involved, it actually sort of did.” data-reactid=”32″>Say what you want about Wednesday’s inaugural Campeones Cup between defending MLS champion Toronto FC and Tigres, their counterparts from Liga MX, but it meant something. Maybe not to TFC fans, who can’t really be faulted for staying away from TFC’s BMO Field in droves. But to the teams involved, it actually sort of did.

Both managers sent out close to first-choice lineups. For a Toronto side desperately trying to make the MLS playoffs, that was a pleasant surprise. There’s also a simple explanation for it: Besides pride and a trophy, a significant amount of prize money was also on the line.

There have been conflicting reports about how much the winners — Tigres, emphatically, as it turned out — would be rewarded. One said the victors would receive $340,000. Another suggested the figure was higher. Turns out it’s a lot higher: I’m told both TFC and Tigres received $400,000 up front, split evenly between the players and the club, with the Mexican side earning another $200,000 (also split 50-50) for their comprehensive 3-1 win. Not bad for a single night’s work.

see its potential. Games between MLS and Mexican teams are always compelling. The more the merrier. But watching Wednesday’s contest, I couldn’t help but think how it would be nice if the CONCACAF Champions League got the same sort of love.” data-reactid=”35″>If MLS and Liga MX want the Campeones Cup to matter, this is how to do it. I get why both leagues are promoting it, and why national broadcasters in the U.S. and Canada see its potential. Games between MLS and Mexican teams are always compelling. The more the merrier. But watching Wednesday’s contest, I couldn’t help but think how it would be nice if the CONCACAF Champions League got the same sort of love.

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Seattle Sounders general manager Garth Lagerwey. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

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Peter Vermes has led Sporting Kansas City to the third-most wins in MLS since 2011. (AFP Photo/JAMIE SQUIRE)

Doug McIntyre covers soccer for Yahoo Sports. Follow him on Twitter @ByDougMcIntyre.” data-reactid=”105″>Doug McIntyre covers soccer for Yahoo Sports. Follow him on Twitter @ByDougMcIntyre.

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