Sounders played a nervy first half but ended this weekend with a big win over a big rival, taking the Cascadia Cup, and showed they can still through a major blow on the round against the top side. There were plenty of games this week, so let's dive right in.
Four games on Wednesday for MLS sides, with three being in MLS and the remainder being in our CCL group.
NYCFC 2 - Toronto FC 0: Not much I'm going to say since it does not impact the Sounders playoff hopes/chances but I will say that NYCFC did some damage against what is supposed to be a Eastern Conference finalist. If they keep it up, they probably still can't get in to the playoffs.
New England Revolution 2 - New York Red Bulls 1: Bad day to be a fan of any New York football team (that is not owned by a British team). I mean the Jets suck and the Giants had it come out that the Eli Manning blew the game by telling Rashad Jennings not to score twice late in the game, Mike Petke never did that. Oh wait...wrong teams. Anyway the Revs are dying to stay relevant this year and beating a front-runner is a good way to go.
San Jose Earthquakes 1 - Montreal Impact 1: Montreal is starting to find rhythm again (of course it is after I bad mouthed them a few weeks ago) pulling out a draw in San Jose. This is great for the Sounders, who did not get as many points as they could have in California. Montreal stalled them and picked a draw to ensure that the 'Quakes stayed below the redline.
Vancouver Whitecaps 1 - CD Olimpia 0: The win means that the Sounders and 'Caps are tied on points and have almost entirely knocked Olimpia out. The Sounders face Vancouver on Wednesday and a win would guaranteee them 1st place (if Van won in Honduras, it would bring them back to tied at seven points with the first tie breaker being head-to-head, where we'd have the advantage). So good news on the CCL front too.
Sporting Kansas City 3 - FC Dallas 1: A draw would've been better overall for the Sounders since then neither team can run away but if anything whichever team that won was going to have a slight advantage towards the Sounders. FC Dallas would either have more points with similiar games or KC with about the same points but more in hand. So the result if it wasn't a draw has the same net effect, one team is a good position to drop the Sounders down a spot before the season ends. At least in KC's case, the Sounders can still swing a 6-point week by winning in KC next week.
Toronto FC 3 - Colorado Rapids 1: Rapids suck. They are not a playoff threat. Sebastian Giovinco took over. There's not much more to say than that for this one.
Vancouver Whitecaps 0 - Seattle Sounders 3: You know what happened by now. You loved watching the boys in Rave Green give it to 'em in BC. It was fun but now they need to get back to work and do it again midweek against the same guys. Then finish the weekend strong with our first of four remaining games, all on Sundays. 'Caps did not lose the #1`spot in the West but they are within striking distance for everyone.
NYCFC 3 - San Jose 2: Six point week for NYCFC as they welcomed the 'Quakes to their baseball stadium. What happened in the match is exciting when there's five goals but since it is SJ, no one really cares...What we care about is the team with the best shot going into the week to knock a team out of playoffs and especially the Sounders fell flat. They had a chance to pick up six points this week playing two bottom feeder Eastern Conference sides this week and wound up with a big ol' single point. This isn't the nail in the 'Quakes coffin but with only four games left and being on the outside looking in, but their bad week is likely their death sentence.
DC United 1 - Columbus Crew 2: Eastern Conference battle between the fourth place side and the side that held the top spot almost the whole season, the winner takes the top spot, the loser sits in fourth. A draw would keep DC in 1st while CLB would stay in fourth. Well all of this would hold true until the Red Bulls result Sunday, but since that game isn't over yet the winner gets 1st. And since you started with the scoreline, you guessed it, Columbus moved to #1. They blew out the Sounders, collapsed for about 1.5 months, and then as summer started to dwindle, the Crew picked up the pace and now sit in 1st waiting on the Red Bulls - Timbers result to know how long will their reign last.
Montreal Impact 3 - New England Revs 0: Great week for Montreal who picked up four points out of six against playoff/contending sides. The win put the Impact in 6th with a handful of games still in hand. Didier Drogba has come on strong and ready to roll. He may single handidly get them to the playoffs and dare I say MLS Cup.
Chicago Fire 0 - Orlando City SC 1: The loser of Montreal's success is the expansion squad who has spent much of the year limping into the last spot in the playoffs, but hey first year playoffs is still an accomplishment for them. They sit on the outside looking in and did not look confident playing the worst team in MLS. Oh and update, Frank Yallop was fired because FINALLY!!!!! Hire me Chicago, I can make the playoffs. Like seriously anyone on this site can coach better than Yallop.
Real Salt Lake 3 - Los Angeles Galaxy 0: Got you with the suspense stuff didn't I? Well we wanted the top teams to lose and lose they did. LA has been worse than poor on the road this year and getting blownout while having all their starters and DPs on the field is a giant wake up call. No doubt they'll be angry when they play next week, but we don't play them for two weeks so we should get a lackidasical LA road side, right? But seriously, RSL is not a playoff threat this year with how few points they have but taking out one of the teams ahead of is a great showing of support and love from RSL to Garth.
Portland Timbers 0 - New York Red Bulls 2: I was in Portland when the game started and quickly got out of there but before I did RBNY was up 2-0. It stayed that way thankfully. Portland fell and the Sounders grip on a top 4 spot and playoff spot as a whole strengthened. Beat KC next week and it starts to look even rosy-er (pun intended). Portland should make the playoffs since the team that can knock them out is SJ, who seems to be having an earthquake right now and forgetting to put players on the pitch but the Timbers could always go TIIIMMMMMBBBBEEEERRRRRRRR and fall out themselves. This lost left open the door for a challenger and expect the final to be as fierce as they get.
Philadelphia Union 2 - Houston Dynamo 0: Another game that goes Seattle's way. Houston is a potential playoff threat as in they mathmatically were not eliminated going into the weekend. Philly is still bad and that makes them beating Houston even better. Owen Coyle's side look pretty suspect out there and hopefully is something that continues in a few weeks when the Sounders go down to Texas to face the oranges.
The Sounders sit in 4th, three points behind this week's loser, Vancouver, but they have a game in hand. FC Dallas with two in hand sit two points ahead in 2nd. LA sits in third, two points ahead and tied on games and losing the tie breaker with both FCD and SEA. SKC is a point behind with two in hand, a win against them is a must to keep them below us in the table. Portland is still in the playoff picture sitting a point above SJ (one in hand) and three above RSL (same played). The playoff race is still wide open but the Sounders, while tied for most games, still sit control their own destiny with a great win over the leaders this week.
Since tweets and vines were obviously absent (sorry about that) here's a rundown on major things from the weekend
Giovinco picked up two goals in four minutes as he continues his quest to win MVP and Newcomer of the Year.
Ned Grabavoy joined Gio with two goals of his own, both assisted by a DP.
Kei Kamara is challenging Gio for the claim of top player with a goal and assist in his win of DC.
Drogba picked up another goal and assist this weekend, and keeper Evan Bush earned as assist as well.
Devon Sandoval continued the two goal party, with the bookends for RSL in the 3rd and 53rd.
KC started the weekend games with Benny Feilhaber scoring two to get the lead, goals in the 65th and 76th (the 2nd a PK). Unfortunately no reds in this one.
Sounders 2 had a tough final match Thursday against the Austin Aztex, needing a draw to get into the playoffs. They went up 1-0 early on a PK then ended up down 2-1 before flying back with two unanswered late to get a 3-2 win and the playoff spot. After holding one of the top two spots for the first half of the season and then at least a strong playoff spot for the next month, they collapsed as of late with a poor July and August (like the pro-side actually) but picked up what they needed sliding into the final spot. S2 will be hosted by the 3rd place finisher, which will not be decided till Tuesday when Orange County FC and Sacramento Republic FC play the Western Conference regular season finale. S2 could face either the Sacramento Republic or the Colorado Springs Switchbacks. Orange County with a lose would fall to 4th, with a win or draw they will win the conference.