Standings Watch: Looking ahead to this weekend's matches

After the Wednesday night draw against Sporting Kansas City, the Dynamo failed to make up any ground on their perennial rivals in the Eastern Conference standings. They were able to pick up a crucial point, however, and have the weekend off before returning to the pitch against the New York Red Bulls in the regular season home finale on Oct. 20 (TICKETS).

With the Dynamo inactive this weekend, let's take a look at some of the big matches you need to pay attention to in the Eastern Conference that will have major effects on the Dynamo's playoff hopes and seeding.

Montreal Impact vs. New England Revolution (Saturday, 1:30 p.m.)

Montreal is now two points back of the Dynamo with two games in hand, which they make up on Saturday against New England and next Wednesday against the LA Galaxy. New England, meanwhile, is sitting on the outside of the playoffs spots with 42 points, three behind fifth place Philadelphia Union.

New England faces a tough task on the road, but they were seconds away from defeating first place New York Red Bulls at Red Bull Arena last week and Montreal is winless in their last four matches.

A draw or Montreal loss would be the ideal situation here, as the Dynamo are keen to holding onto the third spot or higher, meaning that they would bypass the 4 vs. 5 playoff match to begin the postseason. If New England wins out, the best they could do is draw level with the Dynamo on points.

D.C. United vs. Philadelphia Union (Saturday, 6:00 p.m.)

Philadelphia, occupying the fifth and final playoff spot, are three points behind the Dynamo in third place and two points ahead of the Chicago Fire in sixth. They go on the road to last-place and U.S. Open champion D.C. United this weekend needing a win to ensure that they stay in playoff position at least for another week. A draw, and Chicago could leapfrog them above the red line. A loss, and both Chicago and New England would have the chance to push past the Union.

Clearly, the Dynamo would like D.C. to do the improbable and get a home win. The Black and Red played well in a 3-0 loss to the Fire last week, as odd as that may sound, and they did recently knock off Real Salt Lake in Utah to claim a championship trophy. The more points that teams below the Dynamo drop, the sooner the Dynamo can clinch a playoff spot and we can all breathe a little bit easier.

FC Dallas vs. Chicago Fire (Saturday, 7:30 p.m.)

It's the Brimstone Cup! Two heated rivals (sorry) do battle in one of the final non-conference matches of the season. Chicago is two points back of Philadelphia for the last playoff spot.

As much as it may burn (again, terribly sorry), Dynamo fans will want to root for FC Dallas in this one. Again, the Dynamo would like as much of a gap between them and the teams below them as possible. According to, a Fire win is the result this weekend that would most negatively impact the Dynamo's playoff chances.

New York and Sporting Kansas City both have the weekend off as well, so they have no impact on the standings until next weekend. The Dynamo can come out of this weekend either steady in third position, dropped to fourth or all the way down to the last playoff spot. Regardless, the Dynamo will be five points behind New York with two games left to play when they meet on Oct. 20.

Put on your orange and settle in, it's going to be a fun final few weeks.