|The Dirty Pirate limbers up.|
The showstopper this weekend, the one you need to see. Shame it's on Galavision, which means you have to watch it through the fuzzy haze in the non-HD wilderness. This game is a delicious entree for a few reasons. None are bigger than Wondo's pursuit of Roy Lassiter's goals record of 27. Wondo's at 25 with two regular season games left, and MLS is reportedly flying Lassiter to the Bay Area for the game. Why? It seems unlikely that Wondo either ties or breaks the record against LA, but MLS appears keen to frame a moment here if he does. Which is fine. It's also the home finale for the 'Quakes, who break ground Sunday at the Coleman Avenue site where their new 18,000-seat stadium will rise into the crisp bay air. And, it's the California Clasico, which has already produced two absolute classics this season. That enough story lines for you? Don't miss it. If only MLS Live could simulcast with Galavision for fans who desire English commentary...
Philadelphia Union at Houston Dynamo
Philly's season is over, but the Dynamo have plenty of chips still on the felt. Houston needs to extend its 24-game unbeaten run at home (and Boniek Garcia will likely have a lot to do with that) if it hopes to squeak into the playoffs ahead of Columbus. Meanwhile, Philly is actually on a fairly positive run of form with wins in its last two, and the spoiler role is an obvious one. The Crew are just a point back with two games remaining, meaning the pressure's on the Dynamo to get the result, which, honestly, they probably will. But will a draw be enough? Which brings us to...
Columbus Crew at DC United
Huge game for both sides. Of course Columbus needs wins to keep up with Houston, but perhaps the more compelling storyline here is United. DC can secure passage to the playoffs for the first time in five years with a win or a draw, and recent history is certainly on United's side. They boast the second-most prolific offense at home in the league with 34 goals and a +19 goal differential at RFK. Columbus kept its postseason hopes alive against SKC before the international break with a theatrical equalizer from Eddie Gaven in stoppage time for a 1-1 draw. Probably won't be enough now. The Crew need wins.
Portland Timbers at Vancouver Whitecaps
Portland's turbulent season is well over, which focuses the glare squarely on the 'Caps. Vancouver was dreadful in August and September. They lost five of seven and went winless, which allowed former postseason also-ran Dallas to creep back into the picture. Only FCD has struggled to pick up full three-pointers when necessary, leaving the 'Caps with a slim four-point hold on the fifth playoff spot with two games left. Vancouver showed signs of shaking off the rust in a 4-0 win over Chivas before the break, but, yeah, it's Chivas. And this is a Cascadia Cup tie, so anything's possible. If FCD can get a result from Seattle and Vancouver loses to Portland, we're going to have an interesting final day of the regular season on our hands.
Colorado Rapids at Chivas USA
Hahahaha. Just kidding. (Go watch SKC-NYRB instead).
- Will Parchman