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Clearing up the MLS playoff picture

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With every team in MLS having two games left to play, we look at who's in, who's out, and who's seeded where.

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Two teams are fighting for one spot in the East, and two teams are fighting for one spot in the West, and nobody is locked into their seed. Let's look a little closer at what's left to fight for with two games left in the MLS regular season.

Eastern Conference

In:

1) D.C. United - 16-9-7, 55 points
Remaining Schedule: CHI, @MTL
Best Case Scenario: 1st
Worst Case Scenario: 3rd
Notes: D.C. United needs just one point in its two remaining games to finish in first place in the Eastern Conference, or for both New England and Kansas City to fail to win either of their remaining two consecutive games. New England can pass DCU on the 1st tiebreaker, wins, if they win both of their games while D.C. lose both. Kansas City can only equal United's win total, and would need to eliminate the 4-goal deficit in goal differential to win the 2nd tiebreaker.
BlasianSays Says: 1st

2) New England Revolution - 15-13-4, 49 points
Remaining Schedule: @HOU, TOR
Best Case Scenario: 1st
Worst Case Scanario: 5th
Notes: The slate is not difficult, with a trip to an eliminated Houston, and possibly facing an eliminated Toronto at home to close the season. Their schedule is more forgiving than Kansas City's, and they own the wins tiebreaker right now, but would lose the goal differential tiebreaker if it came to that.
BlasianSays Says: 2nd

3) Sporting Kansas City - 14-11-7, 49 points
Remaining Schedule: @PHI, NY
Best Case Scenario: 1st
Worst Case Scenario: 5th
Notes: The New York match looms as a possible battle for seeding, and Kansas City, like any of the other teams, will badly want to avoid the play-in game. Luckily for them, that last game is at home.
BlasianSays Says: 3rd

4) New York Red Bulls - 12-9-11, 47 points
Remaining Schedule: CLB, @SKC
Best Case Scenario: 2nd
Worst Case Scenario: 5th
Notes: D.C. United's victory over Houston gifted New York something they couldn't do for themselves to this point -- a spot in the playoffs. The Metros are playing two teams who are fighting for something, and that will make the road tougher.
BlasianSays Says: 5th

Still Fighting:

5) Columbus Crew - 12-10-10, 46 points
Remaining Schedule: @NY, PHI
Best Case Scenario: 2nd
Worst Case Scenario: Out
Notes: Columbus just needs to avoid losing both of their games to make the postseason, and that should not be too difficult, especially at home against Philadelphia. The Crew haven't lost since the end of August, and I think they're going to continue that this weekend with a win in New Jersey to clinch, and put themselves in pole position to host the play-in game.
BlasianSays Says: 4th

6) Toronto FC - 11-14-7, 40 points
Remaining Schedule: MTL, @NE
Best Case Scenario: 5th
Worst Case Scenario: Out
Notes: If Toronto wins out and Columbus loses out, Toronto would take 5th on the first tiebreaker. Let's just say that isn't likely to happen.
BlasianSays Says: Out

Western Conference

In:

1) Seattle Sounders - 19-10-3, 60 points
Remaining Schedule: @LA, LA
Best Case Scenario: 1st, Supporters Shield
Worst Case Scenario: 2nd

2) Los Angeles Galaxy - 17-6-9, 60 points
Remaining Schedule: SEA, @SEA
Best Case Scenario: 1st, Supporters Shield
Worst Case Scenario: 2nd
Notes: MLS must be wetting themselves over the Western Conference and Supporters Shield being decided between two teams over the final two weekends. If you're thinking that D.C. United could maybe pip both of these teams for the Shield, keep in mind that while DCU could finish with 61 points if they run the table, the lowest total the West winner could finish with is 62 points. LA has to earn at least four points from the final two games against Seattle to win the West, and I think they'll win in Carson and draw in Seattle. That will be enough.
BlasianSays Says: LA 1st, Seattle 2nd

3) Real Salt Lake - 14-8-10, 52 points
Remaining Schedule: @POR, CHV
Best Case Scenario: 3rd
Worst Case Scenario: 4th
Notes: I wouldn't want to go to Portland on a Friday night with the Timbers badly needing three points to stay alive in the postseason race. I am not Joao Plata, Javi Morales, or Nat Borchers, and with a home game against Chivas to close out the season, the current state of things looks to be the most likely outcome.
BlasianSays Says: 3rd

4) FC Dallas - 15-11-6, 51 points
Remaining Schedule: @COL, POR
Best Case Scenario: 3rd
Worst Case Scenario: 5th
Notes: It's too bad for Dallas that they have two winnable games to close out the season, because RSL aren't likely to fall out of 3rd, which means a play-in game for the Frisco Kids anyway.
BlasianSays Says: 4th

Still Fighting:

5) Vancouver - 11-8-13, 46 points
Remaining Schedule: @SJ, COL
Best Case Scenario: 4th
Worst Case Scenario: Out
Notes: It's a fairly easy slate for Vancouver, especially after seeing them win in Seattle. They can only improve their standing if they win out and Dallas lose out, as a tie on points would go to Dallas on the first tiebreaker, and I would be shocked if Dallas didn't at least get a draw out of those two games. I think the San Jose game is a potential banana peel, but as you'll see, even a slip up by Vancouver might not be punished by Portland
BlasianSays Says: 5th

6) Portland Timbers - 11-9-12, 45 points
Remaining Schedule: RSL, @DAL
Best Case Scenario: 5th
Worst Case Scenario: Out
Notes: This is about as bad a situation as you could ask for when you're talking about two games to play and needing to make up a point. The Timbers will face the likely 3rd and 4th place teams in the West, and I don't see them winning either of those matches. It's a long fall from grace, from last year to being out of the playoffs this year, but I think it's the cruel reality for PTFC.
BlasianSays Says: Out