The MLS playoff race was supposed to clear up after the past weekend's matches, but three teams won vital games to stay alive and keep the race as packed as ever.
FC Dallas, D.C. United and Toronto FC all won matches on Saturday to force a four-way tie for the final MLS playoff spot with one match to go.
New England lost its hold on the final playoff spot with a 0-0 tie vs. the Chicago Fire, while FC Dallas defeated the Colorado Rapids, 2-1, leaving the Rapids with just a one-point hold on its playoff spot.
Toronto FC defeated Real Salt Lake, 1-0, to drop RSL behind the playoff, while D.C. United scored a clutch 1-0 win vs. Columbus.
TFC currently holds the tie-breaker among the four teams tied, based on its 2-1-3 record against the other teams tied on 39 points. New England and FC Dallas are tied with 2-2-2 records vs. the other 39-point teams. D.C. United is in last among the tied teams, with a 1-2-3 record. The only team D.C. United holds a tie-breaker on is FC Dallas, while FC Dallas only holds a tie-breaker on Toronto FC.
The Seattle Sounders were the only team to clinch a playoff spot last weekend by way of their 3-2 victory against the Kansas City Wizards. The Chicago Fire still sit in second place in the Eastern Conference, and the automatic playoff spot that comes with it, but Chicago has yet to clinch the spot by virtue of D.C. United and FC Dallas still being within three points of the FIre and holding the tie-breaker advantage on the Fire.
One team trailing the pack, but still with a chance of grabbing a playoff spot, is Real Salt Lake, which needs to win its season finale against the Colorado Rapids and have FC Dallas lose, and have D.C. United, Toronto FC and New England all not win their season finales in order to grab a playoff spot. RSL holds tie-breakers on D.C., TFC and the Revs, and would hold the tie-breaker on Colorado if it beats the Rapids by more than two goals, or wins by two goals while scoring more than two goals on Saturday. RSL can get in with a win and a variety of other results, which we will list on Monday.
The race for the top spot in the West got even tighter after Chivas USA settled for a 2-2 tie vs. San Jose. Chivas USA sits one point ahead of Los Angeles and Houston for first place in the West, with the Galaxy and Dynamo playing today. Chivas USA still holds a game in hand on both teams.
What did you think of this weekend's MLS results? Which three teams do you see grabbing the final three MLS playoff spots?
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