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Soccer TFC to open CONCACAF Champions League against Club Atletico Independiente in Panama

Toronto FC will open its 2019 Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League on Feb. 19 in La Chorrera, Panama, against Club Atletico Independiente.

The return leg of the round-of-16 series will be Feb. 26 at BMO Field.

The MLS club, which reached the final of the 2018 competition, already knew it was playing the Panama team from the Dec. 3 draw in Miami. On Wednesday, the dates for the tie were announced.

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Toronto beat the Colorado Rapids and Mexico’s Tigres UANL and Club America to reach the final in April when it lost via penalty shootout to Chivas Guadalajara.

TFC qualified for the 2019 competition by winning the 2018 Canadian Championship.

Should it advance, Toronto will meet either Mexico’s Club Deportivo Toluca or Sporting Kansas City in the March quarterfinals. Its semifinal opponent would be the last team standing from Atlanta United versus C.S. Herediano (Costa Rica) and Mexico’s Monterrey versus Alianza FC (El Salvador).

The semifinals will be in early April with the two-legged final slated for April 23-25 and April 30 to May 2.

The knockout tournament features 16 top club teams from CONCACAF, which represents North and Central America and the Caribbean.

In other TFC-related news, Toronto FC 2 has signed forward Jordan Perruzza. The 17-year-old from Toronto becomes the 43rd Toronto FC academy player to sign a pro contract with the club.

The Canadian under-20 international appeared in four matches for TFC 2, scoring two goals during the 2018 USL regular season. Perruzza originally joined the TFC academy in December 2012. He moved to Italy in 2013, joining Empoli FC’s academy before returning to Toronto’s ranks in July 2018.

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