Three Big Storylines:
- Friday night's UniMas game sees two teams propping up the Western Conference badly in need of a win. Since finishing June with wins over the Seattle Sounders and LA Galaxy, the San Jose Earthquakes have one point from their last six played and they host the Colorado Rapids who despite having a perfect July with nine points from three matches still see themselves 10th in a 10 team Western Conference. The Rapids have lost both matches they played since the calendar flipped to August. A draw really does not do either team much good as both teams need three points if they are hoping to climb back into the playoff picture, expect an open game as a result.
- The schedule has commenced it's inevitable shift to more conference play to finish the season. Saturday sees three Western Conference matchups with playoff implications starting with Sporting KC hosting the Vancouver Whitecaps (MLS Live, 6 PM) and FC Dallas hosting LA Galaxy (MLS Live, 6 PM) and finishing with Real Salt Lake hosting the Portland Timbers (ROOT Sports in the Northwest and MLS Live, 7 PM).
- The Golden Boot race is starting to take shape for the 2015 season and it looks to be a three man race. Kei Kamara leads with 17 goals in 24 games played, but the Columbus Crew have a bye this week before two home matches next week against NYCFC and Sporting KC. NYCFC's David Villa is third on 14 goals but with only 21 games played. The hottest player in MLS is probably Sebastian Giovinco who has 16 goals from 22 games played. TFC are at the New York Red Bulls on Saturday (MLS Live, 4:00 PM). Interestingly the players topping the Goals per 90 chart (minimum 400 minutes played) are Orlando City SC's Cyle Larin with 11 goals and a 0.81 G/90 and the LA Galaxy's Robbie Keane also with 11 goals but a 0.79 G/90.
From a Sounders Point of View:
Three points. At some point your author might not lead this section with that obvious statement. But with the travails of the Sounders since a night at Starfire, getting three points and starting a nice run is of paramount importance this weekend.
A draw does neither San Jose or Colorado much good, so clearly that is what we want on Friday night. Vancouver is 5 points clear of Sporting KC but SKC have three games in hand and both are ahead of the Sounders. A Vancouver away win would solidify their status as Western favorites and we do not want that. Another draw in Kansas please. The Galaxy in Frisco is another tough one. We don't want the Galaxy to get a head of steam with their new signings, so a lean to FC Dallas although a Draw would be great. And as much as I like seeing Portland draw just because it annoys them and is kind of funny, let's go RSL. Get three points from Timber Joey and company.
National TV Listings:
San Jose Earthquakes v Colorado Rapids
Friday, 8:00 PM
Streaming: Univision Deportes
Seattle Sounders v Orlando City SC
Sunday, 2:00 PM
Streaming: Watch ESPN
This is your Sounder at Heart MLS Week 24 Gamethread. Watch with us.