Standings Watch CCL Edition: Where the Dynamo stand going into the final group match

We've been feeding you updated MLS standings and scenarios weekly with Standings Watch, but today we turn our attention to CONCACAF Champions League before the Dynamo's final group match on Thursday vs. Árabe Unido (7 p.m. CT; FOX Soccer Plus).

While the Dynamo's MLS situation is a little messy, the CCL scenario is pretty clean: get a result and you're through to the knockout stages. A win or a tie in Panama sends Houston past the group stage for the second consecutive year.

The Dynamo (7 pts) are currently ahead of Árabe Unido (6 pts) and W Connection (1 pt) in Group 1. W Connection have played all of their matches and have been eliminated from contention.

A win puts the Dynamo at 10 points and clearly ahead of Árabe Unido. A draw would keep El Expreso Azul a point behind Houston.

Getting through the group stage of the regional tournament is commendable, but the Dynamo are keen to improve upon last year's result when they pulled out a 1-0 home win over Mexican side Santos Laguna before falling out of the tournament on the return leg.

The eight group winners advance to the knockout rounds, and are seeded 1-8 according to their group stage performances, with the No. 1 seed paired against No. 8, No. 2 with No. 7, etc. These are the ranking tiebreakers:

  1. Points
  2. Goal differential
  3. Goals scored
  4. Away goals scored
  5. Wins
  6. Away wins
  7. Drawing of lots

Last year, the Dynamo were the No. 7 seed. Here's how this year's rankings look right now, with games to be played Thursday night:

Seed Team Points GD Games left
1. Toluca (MEX) 12 +11 none
2. Cruz Azul (MEX) 12 +8 none
3. Tijuana (MEX) 10 +8 none
4. LA Galaxy (USA) 9 +6 10/24 at Isidro Metapán
5. Alajuelense (CRI) 9 +3 none
6. Kansas City (USA) 8 +4 none
7. Houston (USA) 7 +3 10/24 at Árabe Unido
8. San Jose (USA) 6 +2 none

Group 1 is the only group that has not been decided.

A Dynamo win would push them to at least the fifth seed. The Dynamo could catch the Galaxy and go into fourth if LA loses to Isidro Metapán tonight, or if the Galaxy tie and the Dynamo make up the tiebreakers. Catching Tijuana would require defeating Árabe by at least a five goal margin. A tie gets the Dynamo to the knockout stage, but keeps them in seventh.