There has been plenty of talk about the CONCACAF Champions League draw, which was hardly kind to the Seattle Sounders. Not only were they and the Vancouver Whitecaps the only MLS teams to be slotted into the same group, but the third team is Honduran power Olimpia, a team with 29 domestic league titles and that knocked off the Portland Timbers in last year’s CCL.
But it's not just the quality of the opponent, that's daunting. To even make it to Estadio Tiburcio Carias Andino, opponents must fly into the infamous Toncontín International Airport.
"It's like one of the most dangerous airports in the world to fly into," Sounders head coach Sigi Schmid explained. "You can look that up. It's right on a cliff, if you don't take off in time (sound effect of falling), you're over the cliff. When you bank in there, you almost feel like you can touch the dirt."
Sure enough, the History Channel rated Tegucigalpa's airport the second most extreme in the world. Not only is the airport located in the mountains about 6,000 feet above sea level, but pilots must navigate hills, houses and a freeway before touching down on an extremely short landing strip that ends on a cliff. Apparently, this is one of those airports pilots dread flying into, and those are the ones who have done it multiple times.
If you're considering making this trip, I suggest not watching that History Channel video, but you can still appreciate how crazy it is by watching this (you know, just for kicks):
In fact, they are just two of dozens of videos showing landings and takeoffs at Toncotin. Most of them show planes landing when the weather is relatively nice, we can only imagine what it's like when there are high winds or rain.