Take Me Out to the Ballgame – Week 31
After week 31 the numbers look like this…
|5 year comparison|
|WK 31||217 GP||YTD|
|YTD – 217 Games|
Here are the attendance comparisons to 2008’s equal number of home games(217):
|MLS Attendance – Equal # of Home Games|
|Real Salt Lake||16,076||79.27%||16,211||0.84%||14||76.56%||19,340|
|N.Y./N.J. Red Bulls||15,741||62.49%||11,861||-24.65%||14||47.09%||25,189|
My disclaimer about the capacity calculations – Additional disclaimer note: I factored in the Dallas game at the Cotton Bowl as 100% capacity of 51,012.
Week 31 games drew 17,267. The midweek affair at Rio Tinto against RBNY drew a healthy 16,247. Toronto had its normal 20,000+ in the regular season finale at BMO. And even the Revs finally drew a nice crowd with over 18,000 showing up. More than 16,200 braved a steady cold rain in DC. They must have had giveaways for anything not nailed down as Dallas had its first 15,000 gate since opening day, not counting last week when Mexico played a friendly as part of a doubleheader. The Wizards nearly sold out CAB(they should be selling out everygame). Don’t know if it’s the competition, but Chivas USA didn’t pull in 13,000 for KC(this week) or SJ(last week). Too bad, they were having a very good season at the gate. They’ll still finish OK, but were up over 11% earlier in the year. Closing out the week was the showcase match, Western Conference champion contenders Los Angeles visiting Houston. Does anything think David Beckham doesn’t make a difference? Over 29,400 showed up at Robertson Stadium, 10,000 more than the next highest gate this season.
|Week 31 Games|
|Real Salt Lake||2||RSL – Behind the Shield|
|RBNY||0||Red Bulls Reader|
|Real Salt Lake||0||RSL – Behind the Shield|
|New England||0||Revolution Soccer|
|Chicago||0||Chicago Fire Confidential|
|DC United||1||DCU – Steve Goff – Soccer Insider|
|Columbus||0||Columbus Dispatch – Crew XTra|
|FC Dallas||2||3rd Degree – Buzz Carrick|
|Kansas City||2||Kansas City – Hillcrest Road|
|Chivas USA||2||Chivas USA – MLSNet|
|San Jose||2||San Jose Center Line Soccer|
|Houston||0||Soccer y Fútbol – Barnard Fallas|
|Los Angeles||0||LA – Official Blog|
So How Are They Doing?
|Points after 217 Games|
|Real Salt Lake||37||29||1.28||5||1/0|
|NY Red Bull||18||29||0.62||-25||1/0|
MLS Playoffs – In: Los Angeles, Houston, Columbus, Seattle – Out: RBNY, San Jose, Kansas City
Every game had playoff implications, from the wannabees trying to get in to the qualified jockeying for conference championships and home field advantage.
RSL who need to win out, eked out a win over RBNY in a drab midweek affair. It was terrific that Andy Williams, who has been through so much this season, scored the game winner. Unfortunately, their terrible road form continued as they lost at Toronto. Only RBNY, who went winless on the road, has lost more away games than RSL. The 0-0 draw between the Fire and the Revs showed two teams that have struggled down the stretch. Chicago, who started the season unbeaten in 11 matches, has only managed 4 points in 6 games., while New England has taken only 2 points in 4 matches.
The mediocre play(parity?) has even struck Columbus who are a drab 3-1-3(w-d-l) in their last seven and are leaving some drama alive in the chase for the Supporters’ Shield. Chivas USA missed a great opportunity to put itself in the driver’s seat for the Supporters’ Shield, but came up short with a draw vs Kansas City. With the Dynamo/Galaxy draw, Chivas is now the only club that can catch Columbus, but they need Columbus to draw or lose in their last game and the Goats must win its final 2 vs Chicago and Houston, a tall order.
If you are wondering why I’ve listed Toronto in 8th playoff spot, it’s because they hold the tiebreaker over the other three clubs with 39 points, having a better win/loss record against FCD, DCU and the Revs.
|Playoff Contenders Remaining Schedule||Points|
|Real Salt Lake||37||COL||29||8|
|shaded = away game|
|Playoff Contenders Head to Head|
|Real Salt Lake||37||0-1-1||0-1-1||1-0-1||1-0-1||1-1-0||1-0-1||X|
Top 3 tiebreakers.(MLS 2009 Rules of Competition)
- The highest position shall be awarded to the team with the better win/loss record in current regular season games against all other teams equal in points. (head-to-head competition)
- If the teams are still equal in the standings, the highest position shall be awarded to the team with the greater goal difference against all other teams during the regular season. (goal differential)
- If the teams are still equal in the standings, the highest position shall be awarded to the team scoring the greatest number of total goals against all other teams during the regular season. (total goals)
- FC Dallas has not lost at home in 8(7 wins).
- RBNY finished winless on the road(27 total).
- TFC has not lost home in 7 straight.
- TFC have not won on the road in 7 straight.
- Houston have not won on the road in 6 straight.
- Colorado have not won on the road in 8 straight.
- RSL is unbeaten in 9 home games.
- Seattle is scoreless in last 4 home games.
- Chicago is winless in 6(4 draws).
MLS Throw Ins
Chivas USA is the only team with even a chance of winning 50% of its games. Surprised? Don’t be, last year only Columbus won more than half of its matches. in ’07 three teams reached the 50% win mark, in ’06 one, and three made it in ’05.
MLS In CONCACAF Champions League
In Group A, Houston lost at home to Pachuca. They need help in the last match to move on. Árabe Unido will have to lose on its visit to Pachuca while Houston must win at Metapan. Houston holds the tiebreaker over Árabe Unido. DC United stayed strong in Group B this week, with a win over San Juan Jabloteh(T&T). They also hold the tiebreaker advantage over Marathón. Columbus lost to group leaders Cruz Azul, ending its long undefeated(all competitions) home streak. For DCU and Columbus, advancement is in their own control, win and they’re in. Houston must win and Árabe Unido must lose in order to advance.
2.3 CONCACAF Tie-Breaker Procedures
In the event two teams are tied on aggregate goals scored at the end of Regulation time in the 2nd Leg (Preliminary Round or Championship Stage) or on points (Group Stage) the following tie-breaker criteria shall be applied, in order, to determine the winning team or ranking of teams.
Phase 2: Group Stage
- Greater number of points earned in matches between the teams concerned
- Greater goal difference in matches between the teams concerned
- Greater number of goals scored away from home in matches between the teams concerned
|CONCACAF Champions League|
|San Juan Jabloteh(T&T)||0||0||5||0||-11|
|CONCACAF Champions League|
|Group Game 6|
|Columbus plays Oct 20|
|DCU plays Oct 20|
|Houston plays Oct 21|