With the season wrapping up and only a few more games left to be played, it has become do or die for most MLS sides. Most notably, Western Conference clubs FC Dallas, Real Salt Lake, and San Jose are all tied for sixth in the West – the final playoff spot. Salt Lake currently holds the final plug due to wins and goal differential. Nevertheless, the current drama in the league is like none other.
While those three clubs fought it out in the West, how did the rest of the league do over the weekend?
Orlando City 0, FC Dallas 0
FC Dallas continues to remain under the playoff line and the level of concern is high. After snapping their ten-game winless streak last week, they were unable to return early season form against Orlando. The game ended in a 0-0 draw that could have ended differently if the referee provided FC Dallas with a penalty kick after a blatant handball in the box.
Toronto 4, New York Red Bulls 2
Much like FC Dallas, the New York Red Bulls have hit awful form. They have gone nine games without a win. Their last was against FC Cincinnati in mid-August in the U.S. Open Cup. The Red Bulls were unable to hold onto a draw as they let Victor Vazquez and Justin Morrow scored two goals in the final ten minutes of the match.
With New York falling, New England is looking to pounce on the opportunity. After drawing with Atlanta, the Revolution remain only four points away from the final playoff spot in the East. Perhaps the sacking of Jay Heaps was a smart plan after all.
Columbus Crew SC 2, DC United 0
Columbus look to have sealed up a spot in this seasons postseason after defeating the Eastern Conference’s bottom feeders DC United. Goals from Josh Williams and Justin Meram provided the Crew with an easy victory.
The Dynamo’s quest for a postseason appearance lives on after they defeated Minnesota 2-1 on Saturday. Goals from Alberth Elis and Romel Quioto provided Houston with the win but a last-minute goal by Sam Nicholson brought an unneeded stress in the end. Nevertheless, Houston pulled off the win and currently covet the conference’s fifth-place spot. (Also, Elis’ Black Panther celebration was pretty awesome.)
Two of the Eastern Conference’s top clubs squared off in a less-than-exciting contest. Two first-half goals by Nemanja Nikolic and David Villa saw the game through as each side ended the night with a point.
The Montreal Impact needed to win their weekend match against the Rapids to draw themselves within one point of a playoff spot in the East. Instead, they found themselves losing to the lonely Colorado Rapids, 2-1. An 81st minute Alan Gordon goal saw the Impact leave Colorado in defeat.
Vancouver’s victory against Kansas City saw the Canadian side push closer towards taking the crown as the conference’s champions. On the other hand, Kansas City saw themselves fall into a three tie with Portland and Seattle for the runner-up spot.
San Jose is not going to roll over so easily. With the sixth and final playoff spot so close, the Earthquakes were able to help themselves out by defeating the Timbers at home. Goals from Valeri Qazaishili and Danny Hoesen were enough to push them over the Timbers.
Los Angeles Galaxy 1, Real Salt Lake 1
This season has been awful the Galaxy. They fired their coach and they won’t be in the playoffs for the first time in eight seasons. Adding to the drama, Real Salt Lake took away from a potential Galaxy win by scoring in the 95th minute. Old man Kyle Beckerman scored the fantastic equalizer and kept his club in contention for the West’s final playoff spot.
In the only game on Sunday, the Union soundly defeated the Sounders 2-0 at home. Goals by Marcus Epps and Roland Alberg helped see out the win. The Union are four points away from a playoff spot and could make a late push to make it into the postseason.