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RSL Playoff Watch after Wk 31

A perfect storm on Wednesday left RSL out of playoff position, can we get back above the line?

MLS: Colorado Rapids at Real Salt Lake Jeffrey Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

No other teams clenched playoff berths on Wednesday, however Seattle Sounders’ tie with Colorado Rapids means they have at least earned a top 4 position. New England Revolution’s win over D.C. United took them one step closer to winning the Supporter’s Shield, the Sounders are the only team that can reach their current total. Two more teams have been eliminated, FC Dallas and Houston Dynamo join the other four already out.

Sadly for Real Salt Lake, LA Galaxy, Minnesota United and Vancouver Whitecaps all won their games putting RSL in 8th - out of the playoffs.

RSL now has 5 games remaining with a game in hand. Our maximum point total remains at 57, and our projected points based on home & away PPG is 48. That is out of the playoffs in 8th by one point.

So let’s take a look at the games this weekend and see what would be the best results for RSL.

RSL plays on the road in Chicago, a place where we have had mixed results in the past (3-4-6 record). A win would be the best result, and the Fire has certainly not been great this year, but based on prior history a draw is likely. Last weekend they gave New England some serious trouble earning a 2-2 draw in what most thought would be a Revolution romp.

Saturday, Oct. 23rd

  • LA Galaxy (5th) vs FC Dallas (11th) - A Dallas win (however unlikely) would be the best for RSL as it would keep the Galaxy within striking distance. A tie would keep them a point ahead (if RSL wins in Chicago), but we would still have the game in hand.
  • Minnesota United (6th) vs Los Angeles FC (9th) - Best result would be a tie. A win for the Loons move them further ahead of us, and a win for LAFC would put them ahead or equal to RSL (if we lose or tie the Fire). However, if RSL wins and Minnesota loses that would also work in our favor, but still keeps the Angels in threat range which is not ideal, but as they have a much tougher schedule ahead it could still help.
  • Colorado Rapids (3rd) vs Portland Timbers (4th) - Both teams remain out of RSL’s immediate reach. A tie would at least keep them within potential range so that would be the best result. A Rapids win would see them clinch a playoff berth.
  • Seattle Sounders (1st) vs Sporting Kansas City (2nd) - Regardless of the result in this game, it shouldn’t affect RSL as both remain out of immediate reach for us. Mathematically we could pass KC if we win out, the Sounders have already passed our maximum.
  • San Jose Earthquakes (10th) vs Vancouver Whitecaps (7th) - We don’t want the Whitecaps to win this one so the best result is a Quakes win. They are 9 points behind us having played the same number of games. A win for Vancouver would keep them ahead of us and may increase the gap depending on our result. A tie would be adequate, but not ideal. A San Jose loss could see them out depending on other results.
  • The Austin vs Houston game on Sunday will have no affect on RSL’s standing.

With a win in Chicago coupled with the best results, RSL could return to 5th place, the worst case scenario with a loss vs the Fire we could fall to 9th.

Standings and Games Remaining

  1. SEA: 58 - Home vs SKC, Away vs LAFC, Home vs LAG, Away vs VAN
  2. SKC: 52 - Away vs SEA, Home vs LAG, Away vs MIN, Away vs AUS, Home vs RSL
  3. COL: 52 - Home vs POR, Away vs NER, Away vs HOU, Home vs LAFC
  4. POR: 46 - Away vs COL, Home vs SJE, Away vs RSL, Home vs AUS
  5. LAG: 45 - Home vs FCD, Away vs SKC, Away vs SEA, Home vs MIN
  6. MIN: 44 - Home vs LAFC, Away vs VAN, Home vs SKC, Away vs LAG
  7. VAN: 43 - Away vs SJE, Home vs MIN, Away vs LAFC, Home vs SEA
  8. RSL: 42 - Away vs CHI, Away vs FCD, Home vs SJE, Home vs POR, Away vs SKC
  9. LAFC: 40 - Away vs MIN, Home vs SEA, Home vs VAN, Away vs COL
  10. SJE: 33 - Home vs VAN, Away vs POR, Away vs RSL, Home vs FCD
  11. FCD: 31 - Away LAG, Home vs RSL, Home vs AUS, Away vs SJE
  12. HOU: 30 - Away vs AUS, Home vs COL, Away vs MTL
  13. AUS: 25 - Home vs HOU, Away vs FCD, Home vs SKC, Away vs POR

Current projected Western Conference Final Points

  1. Seattle Sounders: 66 (top 4 guaranteed)
  2. Sporting Kansas City: 61
  3. Colorado Rapids: 59
  4. Portland Timbers: 54
  5. LA Galaxy: 51
  6. Minnesota United: 50
  7. Vancouver Whitecaps: 49
  8. Real Salt Lake: 48
  9. Los Angeles FC: 45
  10. San Jose Earthquakes: 38
  11. FC Dallas: 33 (Eliminated)
  12. Houston Dynamo: 33 (Eliminated)
  13. Austin FC: 29 (Eliminated)