Heading into the final weekend of the 2019 Major League Soccer regular season, two playoff places remain up for grabs along with several seeds in both conferences.
The New England Revolution grabbed the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference after a 2-0 home win over East leaders NYCFC on Sunday. Bruce Arena’s side can finish as high as fifth in the standings if they win on the final day, but will ultimately be playing on the road in the postseason.
Also in the East, Atlanta United and the Philadelphia Union will jostle for the No. 2 and No. 3 seeds on the final day as they are home against Eastern Conference competition. D.C. United currently is in fourth place and the final home seed, but the New York Red Bulls and Toronto FC could jump into that spot following next Sunday’s action.
In the West, LAFC has been in hold on the No. 1 seed, while Minnesota United, the Seattle Sounders, and the L.A. Galaxy all remain in the race for second through fourth place. Fifth place Real Salt Lake can move up into the top four spots if they win on Sunday. The Portland Timbers and FC Dallas currently are hanging onto the final two playoff places, but the San Jose Earthquakes and Colorado Rapids are on the outside looking in.
Here are the current conference standings, the matches all of the playoff contenders face on Decision Day, and what the playoff matchups are at the moment:
|EASTERN CONFERENCE||POINTS||REMAINING OPPONENTS|
|Atlanta United||55||vs. New England|
|Philadelphia Union||55||vs. NYCFC|
|D.C. United||49||vs. FC Cincinnati|
|New York Red Bulls||48||at Montreal Impact|
|Toronto FC||47||vs. Columbus Crew|
|New England Revolution||45||at Atlanta United|
Playoff Match-ups at the moment:
First-round bye: NYCFC
Opening Round: Atlanta United vs. New England Revolution, Philadelphia Union vs. Toronto FC, D.C. United vs. New York Red Bulls.
With NYCFC the only side in the East who cannot move up or down, the remaining six sides will all look to end the regular season on a winning note.
The Philadelphia Union welcomes NYCFC to Talen Energy Stadium on Decision Day looking to leapfrog Atlanta United into the No. 2 seed. Jim Curtin’s side lost 2-0 to the Columbus Crew on Sunday and would seek a statement win heading into their first-ever home playoff game.
Atlanta United takes on the in-form New England Revolution and also would like to end the regular season in positive fashion. The Five Stripes will be favorites to win at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, but don’t count out the visiting Revs, who just knocked off NYCFC at home.
D.C. United is in good position to hang onto the final home seed, with last-place FC Cincinnati to Audi Field. Wayne Rooney’s suspension leaves Ben Olsen with a decision to make in attack after Ola Kamara also missed Sunday’s draw in Harrison.
The New York Red Bulls and Toronto FC can finish as high as fourth, but will both face tough tests against eliminated sides. Chris Armas’ side takes on the Montreal Impact away from home, while Toronto FC hosts the Columbus Crew at BMO Field.
Both teams picked up draws in their penultimate regular season matches and could also drop in the standings too if New England wins on the road.
|WESTERN CONFERENCE||POINTS||REMAINING OPPONENTS|
|Minnesota United||53||at Seattle|
|Seattle Sounders||53||vs. Minnesota United|
|L.A. Galaxy||51||at Houston|
|Real Salt Lake||50||at Vancouver|
|Portland Timbers||46||vs. San Jose|
|FC Dallas||45||vs. Sporting KC|
|San Jose Earthquakes||44||at Portland|
|Colorado Rapids||42||at LAFC|
Playoff Match-ups at the moment:
First-round bye: Los Angeles FC
Opening Round: Minnesota United vs. FC Dallas, Seattle Sounders vs. Portland Timbers, L.A. Galaxy vs. Real Salt Lake.
The Western Conference playoff picture will be much more entertaining to watch on Decision Day with two spots up for grabs and seeds No. 2 through No. 7.
LAFC is the only team who cannot move up or down and will take on the Colorado Rapids, who need a win for any chance of making the playoffs.
Minnesota United takes on the Seattle Sounders in a match between teams level on points at 53 apiece. A tie would keep the Loons in the No. 2 seed and keep the Sounders in the top four, although they could drop pending Real Salt Lake’s result against the Vancouver Whitecaps.
The LA Galaxy know a win would keep them in the top four as they travel to eliminated Houston on the final day. A tie however would not be good for the Galaxy, with an RSL win dropping them out of the home seeds.
RSL sits four points clear of sixth-place Portland. The Timbers face off with the San Jose Earthquakes in a match with major playoff implications. A win for Matias Almeyda’s side would boost them into the top seven, leaving either Portland or FC Dallas as the team left out.
Luchi Gonzalez’s side face eliminated Sporting KC at home on the final day knowing a win would ensure a playoff berth. A draw or loss by FC Dallas would suddenly put its playoff fate in the hands of other results.