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MLS Playoffs

Which MLS playoff first leg loser will rebound?

HenryNYLoss (Getty)

Three of four lower seeds in the MLS conference playoff semifinals suffered home losses, leaving most of higher seeds in total control heading into the second leg rematches at mid-week. While that may not bode well for seeing a true upset in the conference semifinals for the first time in a good while (unless you think RSL beating Seattle is actually an upset), we still might see some surprises.

Seattle was the only higher seed who failed to record a road victory last weekend, and instead came away on the wrong end of a painful 3-0 loss. While the Sounders seem like a long shot to reverse that score line, there are other teams who look capable of turning things around.

The New York Red Bulls are only down a goal, but must win at Home Depot Center against an LA Galaxy squad that hasn't lost at home all season. The Philadelphia Union must travel to Robertson Stadium and beat a streaking Houston side on the road. The Colorado Rapids have to take an injury-ravaged squad to Livestrong Sporting Park, where they must erase a two-goal deficit.

They are all difficult tasks, but history would suggest that at least one of these teams will be able to turn things around.

Which team do you see being able to rebound from their first-leg loss and win the series? Cast your vote after the jump:

So who really has the best chance of rebounding? The Union and Red Bulls are only train

Who did you vote for? Think none of the first-leg losers will rebound? Who do you give the best chance of turning things around?

Share your thoughts below.

79 comments
  • hogatroge

    As a Dynamo fan, I have to agree. I would say it’s less than a 50% chance, but out of the potential comebacks, it’s the closest.

    Like

  • Adam M.

    Coulda been anything, as it usually is. If Marquez stopped making field goals it would have been about 5-1 the other way. Point is that LA had some opportunities when RB broke down, but NY controlled most of the action and suffered a couple solid saves.

    Like

  • Kishan Jeter

    The Union played well. They should’ve gotten a penalty because Brad Davis was pegged in the arm with the ball while in the box. Le Toux did get lucky with the service because of the deflection off of Boswell’s back cause otherwise the ball would’ve sailed outside the endzone but Le Toux did good in finishing. He’s a great player. Carlos Costly is a tool and I pray Houston doesn’t renew his contract. He’s only scored one goal all season and that was last week! The video of Geoff Cameron slide tackling was legit. He made contact with the ball, actually he landed down on top of the ball but, he got all ball. He just didn’t want Philly to try and get a penalty kick from dramatic acting. Overall, it was the “Tale of Two Halves” and Houston played their half better and thus, came out with the win. The Union, however, will not win at Robertson Stadium this Thursday. The Houston Dynamo slap them with an “Orange Crush!”

    Like

  • Kishan Jeter

    I love how no one is talking about “Danny Cruz” getting kicked in the face in the first half and all the guy got was a yellow card. WTF! Philly should’ve been down a man the whole game.

    Like

  • Kishan Jeter

    The Union won the 2nd half and Houston won the 1st half. Houston performed better in the half that they won so they won the game.

    The Union should’ve gotten a penalty kick for the handball on Brad Davis. The slide tackle by Geoff Cameron was good, he made contact with the ball and the Union player was trying to embelish the contact to draw a foul.

    The Union player should’ve gotten a red card for kicking Danny Cruz in the face. Danny wasn’t even bent over, he was about to jump to head the ball and gets kicked in the face and then kneed in the ribs. How is that not a red card?

    The Union have won twice in Houston earlier in the season but we were a different team since then. Luiz Carmago, Adam Moffat, Calen Carr, and having Geoff Cameron in the back makes Houston a totally different team. The only way the Union have a chance is if Torres and Adu start and actually connect with Le Toux. Other than that, they have no chance.

    Go Dynamo!

    Like

  • Kishan Jeter

    I,for one, am pulling for the New Jersey Red Cows. They’re only down by one and they have the fire power to bring it. Luke & Thierry need to link up with Lindpere on the offense. On the defense, their retarded DP of a goalie needs to act like one. That goal McGee shot was easily stoppable. Hell, if McGee was in goal he would’ve stopped it.

    Go Dynamo!

    Like

  • Poo

    I love lindpere, but MLS is not going to give him that kind of money. He is a clutch player, but somewhat one dimensional (literally never seen him use his right foot).

    I hope he gets a big pay raise, but dont see it happening. Unfortunately there arent many guys in that range just short of DP money.

    Like

  • JW

    I disagree. Fighting doesn’t reduce a sport in America, hitting the floor like a fish hits a dock does.

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  • TommyOC

    I think the point you’re missing is that LA could’ve been up 3-0 within 20 minutes. (The first post-bang, Magee’s goal, and Franklin’s missed header.)

    Had that been the case, NY could’ve had 65%+ of the possession for the rest of the match and the LA defense and mid would have held.

    Like

  • TommyOC

    Donovan and Keane will be in better form come Thursday, both having come back from injury on Sunday.

    Marquez’ shift to an attacking defender / holding mid was a large reason why NY made it into the playoffs. Their defensive/mid system is predicated on Marquez’ presence and performance.

    Juninho, on the other hand, while an invaluable piece of LA’s attack, has been successfully replaced several times this season. Assuming the Galaxy have a man up to the task of marking Henry like Juni did on Sunday (could be a Donovan + Beckham combo) the Galaxy attack is more than potent enough to pierce NY’s shaky back line.

    Like

  • PD

    Wow, really did not want this to be about woulda could shoulda… the game was called how the game was called. I just had a question about a very specific call is all, not how it should have been different. If every chance was played “right” soccer would routinely end in double digit results, but that’s not the nature of the game. Every game is full missed opportunities, errors of judgement and missed execution–we get so excited on goals pretty passes (and yes perfect tackles) because they are the exception, not the rule. I suppose that’s what we get hot over blown calls, because the game it tough enough, we don’t need other judges making it tougher, but again that was not my point.

    Like

  • PD

    yes but there is a LOT more pressure on them now, and if Nowak rolls out a 6-2-3 with no goalie or something equally nutty as his opening lineup from game 1 it won’t matter how hungry they are….

    Like

  • neill

    I couldn’t believe how gung ho the commentators were in defending Cameron’s tackle — at the same moment they were going on about it, they showed the slow-motion video and it looked pretty clear to me that Cameron was nowhere near the ball.

    Like

  • Charles

    NY was ranked in the top 3 of the power rankings forever. I thought what am I missing, they look terrible ?

    Everyone says they have the most talented team in MLS after finishing 10th. I thought what am I missing, bad D and goal, and a missing mid ?

    Now NY gets 23% of the vote ? I am not missing anything, the teams left are all better than NY, and LA is better than all of those teams.

    Like

  • Cole

    Or you could argue Bruin messed up the pass to Costly, he really put Costly in a tough spot with the pass beong behind him.

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  • Frenchy

    The Union lack playoff experience and it showed with Nowack trotting out a lineup he’s never used before. Houston will take this and it will be grand!

    Dale Dynamo!

    Like

  • jt

    Cameron came in with a crazy flying judo kick, but made contact with the ball before JackMac got caught up with Camerons legs. I’m fine with the tackle and it wasnt a penalty but Cameron didnt have to get up and start yelling at JackMac. If he was a little bit later with the tackle it could have been ugly. And yes there was a slowmo replay while twellman was bitching and as it was shown on tv twellman stopped dead in his statement and that was the last of it.

    Also, even Kinnear didnt think the high boot was worth a red. he was dangerously high but the fact that cruz is like 5’5” and leaned into the header AND garfan didnt hit him in the face/head, he hit him in the stomach, it was a good call

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  • hogatroge

    I agree… Bruin’s pass was late and bad, but Costly had time to settle the ball and still flubbed it. I wouldn’t put all the blame on him, but it should have been a goal. Shoulda, coulda, woulda, though.

    Like

  • Conrad

    I was at a talk Lindpere gave recently. (And “talk” is decidedly a generous term to Joel, who is Estonian and not the most eloquent guy in the world.) He basically stressed that he was playing so hard to be picked up in — and he actually said this — “a better league.” He’s looking to go to England, France, Germany — anywhere, I think.
    It’s too bad he hasn’t scored lately. Also, his crosses are to no one.

    Like

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