Major League Soccer
Only eight weeks remain in the 2013 MLS regular season, and both conferences are stuck in some of the tightest playoff races the league has ever seen. Following the Dynamo’s loss to Montreal over the weekend, let’s check in on results around the Eastern Conference and how they affect Houston’s position.
Entering the weekend, the Dynamo sat in the fifth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. New England’s win at home over the Union now has them level with the Dynamo at 36 points and in fifth place by virtue of tiebreakers. The Dynamo, though hold one game in hand over New England.
Philadelphia remains on 38 points, good for 4th place in the conference standings. The Dynamo have one game remaining against both New England and Philadelphia.
Chicago pulled out a win against their Midwest rivals to keep their name in the playoff race, while Sporting stay close to the pack after starting the weekend tied for the conference lead.
The Fire are two points behind the Dynamo in seventh place with the win, and have played the same number of games. The two teams match up this weekend at Toyota Park.
Kansas City stays just three points ahead of the Dynamo, while Houston holds two games in hand. Houston and Sporting still have one match remaining against each other.
Upset of the weekend. Co-Eastern Conference leaders New York drop a stunning result at Western Conference bottom dwellers Chivas USA. As with Kansas City, it keeps the Red Bulls within three points with two games in hand for the Dynamo.
The Dynamo face New York on September 8 at BBVA Compass Stadium (TICKETS) and then once more at home in their penultimate regular season match.
Columbus has been hanging just on the edge of playoff contention for a while now, with back-to-back wins keeping them in the conversation. The Crew now are seven points adrift of the final playoff spot and have played 25 games, only giving them an advantage over New York, Kansas City and Philadelphia.
A mere five points separate top-seeded Montreal and the Dynamo with ten games left for both teams. All but one of the final ten matches for the Dynamo are against Eastern Conference opponents, with six of those against teams currently above them in the standings.
Despite the loss in Montreal, the Dynamo are tied with Kansas City and New York for the second best points per game (PPG) average in the conference. The Dynamo will look to capitalize down the stretch with games in hand and matches against teams in front of them as they aim for their seventh playoff appearance in eight seasons.
Tune in to ESPN 97.5 FM tonight for a new episode of Soccer Matters with Glenn Davis! Glenn will talk everything soccer, from the weekend in Europe and MLS to upcoming CONCACAF Champions League matches. Hear from Dynamo players!
Tonight's episode airs from 7-9 p.m. and can be heard on the radio on 97.5 FM or online at www.espn975.com.
The call-in number for the show is 713-780-3776.
The Montréal Impact and Houston Dynamo will meet a crucial match for the Eastern Conference playoff picture as the clubs clash Saturday evening at Stade Saputo. The Impact ended a brief losing skid last time out, now sitting in a tie for third place in the East, just a point out of the top spot, following a 2-1 home win vs. D.C. United. The Dynamo are holding onto fifth place and the final postseason berth following their 3-1 home win vs. Seattle Sounders FC last week.
Dynamo: Hall; Sarkodie, Boswell, Taylor, Ashe; Driver, Moffat, Garcia, Davis; Bruin, Barnes
Subs: Marscheider, Brunner, Creavalle, Lopez, Ching, Johnson, Weaver
Montreal Impact: Perkins; Brovsky, Nesta, Ferrari, Camara; Romero, Bernier (C), Bernardello, Mapp; Felipe; Di Vaio
Subs: Bush, Lopez, Warner, Arnaud, Paponi, Pisanu, Nyassi
Dynamo broadcaster Glenn Davis is back on the air tonight with a new episode of Dynamo All-Access, presented by Houston Community College. The show will air on Yahoo! Sports Radio 1560 AM from 7-9 p.m.
Glenn will preview this weekend's big Eastern Conference matchup against the Montreal Impact with interviews from players and coaches.
Listen in as Glenn talks everything Dynamo!
The call-in number for the show is 713-439-1560.
Score a couple of goals, make Team of the Week. That's the formula for Giles Barnes in Week 25, as MLSsoccer.com named him to their weekly best XI. Here's what they had to say about him:
"Clint Dempsey may be making the headlines, but Barnes stole the show as Houston topped visiting Seattle, 3-1. The English forward netted two well-struck goals, including a highlight-reel second goal."
That goal has the Dynamo forward up for Goal of the Week as well, which you can vote for here. Barnes is also up for Feature Subject of the Week (I made this award up) thanks to Tom Dart's story for The Guardian chronicling the Englishman's career (read here).
You've seen his work here on HoustonDynamo.com, but you'll want to read this great piece by Tom Dart on fellow Brit Giles Barnes for The Guardian.
Once tabbed to be the next big thing in English football, Barnes has revived his career here in Houston. Read about Barnes' early career, his decision to come to the U.S. and his impressions of MLS.