Tuesday, September 25, 2007

MLS Playoff Spots Going Fast With 5 Weeks To Go

ChivasUSA, the Los Angeles-based "franchise" of Mexico's oldest football club--CD Guadalajara--has become the fourth MLS team to qualify for the league playoffs which begin October 25.

Chivas qualified on the strength of a 2:1 victory Saturday over Kansas City Wizards at the Home Depot Center in LA. The Red and White join DC United, New England Revolution, and holders Houston Dynamo as those clubs qualified for the playoffs. The clumination of the playoffs is the single-match MLS Cup to be contested on Nov. 18 in Washington, DC.

With the addition of Chivas, just four playoff spots remain. Thus far, none of the clubs making midseason acquisitions of former World Cup superstars has qualified to vie for the 2007 MLS championship.

FC Dallas, featuring former Brazilian World Cup star Denilson, is the closest to attaining a playoff berth and likely would face Chivas in a Western Conference seminfinal. Dallas could qualify as early as Wednesday of this week.

Chicago Fire, new home to Mexican international Cuauhtémoc Blanco, remain in the hunt for the lowest seed playoff berth, but are closely bunched on points with Colorado Rapids and Columbus Crew. With three points on the line in each of the last five matches, it will likely go down to the wire.

Finally, LA Galaxy, possessed of US international Landon Donovan, and now second home to England uber-star David Beckham, has virtually (though not mathematically) been eliminated from making this year's playoff.

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