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This Week in MLS – August 22, 2016

This Week in MLS – August 22, 2016

  •          Chief rivals battle for playoff positioning in the second edition of Heineken Rivalry Week

  •          MLS squads face off in pivotal CONCACAF Champions League matchups

  •          Week 24 AT&T Goal of the Week voting now open

  •          Check It Out, Quotables, Sweet Tweets

  •          Week 25 Game Previews

 

 

Chief rivals battle for playoff positioning in the second edition of Heineken Rivalry Week

Intense rivalries, critical postseason battles and bitter reunions are in store for the second edition of Heineken Rivalry Week. In total, six captivating MLS rivalries will be on display with fans and players on edge as the season enters its final stretch with playoff positioning on the line. The marquee rivalries include a Cascadia Cup bout, a winner take all Texas Derby, a Rocky Mountain Cup affair, a battle for Canadian supremacy, an I-95 face-off and an expansion club showdown.

 

From now on, every point matters. So who will finish above the red line?

 

Rocky Mountain Cup up for grabs as Colorado Rapids head to Real Salt Lake for final showdown 

The second edition of Heineken Rivalry Week kicks off with Viernes de Futbol action when rivals Colorado Rapids visit Real Salt Lake at Rio Tinto Stadium on Friday, August 26 (8 p.m. ET, UniMás). The Rocky Mountain Cup is up for grabs as both clubs took home wins in their previous two meetings this year by 1-0 margins. Playoff positioning will also be paramount as Colorado (West #2) and RSL (West #3) both sit above the red line with two months remaining in the regular season, and will be looking to secure a spot in the postseason as early as possible.

 

Powered by the stingiest defense in MLS with a league low 20 goals allowed and one of the greatest U.S. goalkeepers between the pipes, the Rapids will be facing a tough Real Salt Lake side driven by its undefeated 7-0-5 mark at home. RSL forward Joao Plata has been critical for the Claret-and-Cobalt as he ranks top 10 across the league in combined goals (seven) and assists (nine), with the squad compiling a 7-2-3 record when the 24-year-old Ecuadorian scores or assists in a match this season.

 

League-leading goal scorers New York Red Bulls take on leakiest defense in New England Revolution

Goal lovers are in store for a treat when MLS scoring leaders New York Red Bulls (45 goals scored) host a leaky New England Revolution defense that has allowed the most goals (46 goals allowed) in league play this season on Sunday, Aug. 28 (2:30 p.m. ET, ESPN/ESPN Deportes). The Red Bulls enter with one of the most dynamic attacking duos in MLS as Bradley Wright-Phillips, the club’s all-time leading goal scorer, ranks second in MLS with 15 goals, and Sacha Kljestan claims a league-leading 15 assists.

 

New England’s quest to make a fourth consecutive MLS postseason takes a crucial turn at Red Bull Arena. While the Revs (26 points, 6-11-8 record) are in a battle for the final playoff spot sitting two points out of contention, their I-95 rivals are looking to claim the top spot in the Eastern Conference for the second consecutive year. NYRB holds an impressive 9-2-1 record at home behind its potent attack and will look to continue its exploits in the matchup.

 

Portland looks to stave off streaking Seattle in final Cascadia Cup matchup of the regular season

You don’t have to look much further than Seattle boss Brian Schmetzer’s work desk for ample motivation for a Cascadia Cup match. The newly appointed head coach keeps a photo on his desk of Timbers coach Caleb Porter celebrating a 2013 postseason victory over Seattle, serving as a daily reminder of the powerful emotions and high stakes involved whenever the two teams meet.

 

One week after thrilling fans to an epic clash resulting in a 3-1 Seattle home victory, the Cascadia rivalry travels south to the home of the Portland Timbers for a final meeting between the two with heavy Western Conference playoff implications on Sunday (5 p.m. ET, ESPN/ESPN Deportes). This matchup holds extra importance as Seattle (West #8) aims to continue a momentous late-season surge and steal a postseason spot directly out of Portland’s grasp, who currently hold the final playoff berth in sixth place.

 

Undefeated in four matches since the signing of Designated Player Nicolás Lodeiro and appointment Schmetzer, Seattle (30 points, 9-12-3 record) has seen an offensive revival behind the trio of Lodeiro, Clint Dempsey and rookie sensation Jordan Morris. Twenty-one year-old forward Cristian Roldan, meanwhile, has prospered in that same span with two goals and two assists in his previous four games, including the final tally vs. Portland last week.

 

Orlando City SC head coach Jason Kreis to face former club New York City FC for first time

Newly hired Orlando City SC coach Jason Kreis faces his old squad New York City FC in a must-watch affair on Sunday (7 p.m. ET, FS1/FOX Deportes), after an offseason breakup saw the long-time MLS coach and player depart after just one season with the expansion club. And nothing will make for sweeter payback than claiming a win over the Eastern Conference leaders in front of the OCSC faithful at Camping World Stadium. But NYCFC Patrick Vieira will be back on the sideline after serving a suspension and will have more reason than ever to grab his first win vs. Orlando since he took over the coaching reins, as both loom to make their first postseason appearance in franchise history.

 

Twenty-one-year-old Canadian international Cyle Larin leads Orlando with 12 goals this season, good for top five in MLS, while NYCFC counters with the prolific David Villa who is currently tied for the Golden Boot lead with 16 goals, and young sparkplug and Costa Rican international Ronald Matarrita. With both sides sporting a fast-paced attacking style and a talented mix of international stars and young emerging talent, Sunday’s game should make for one of the most entertaining matches this season.

 

Amid best season in team history, Toronto FC aims for revenge against fierce rival Montreal Impact

After being eliminated by rival Montreal Impact in the last year’s postseason, Toronto FC will certainly look to avenge its defeat and extend an impressive 2016 season, as the club currently sits second in the Eastern Conference with 40 points. But even with the reigning Landon Donovan MVP and current Golden Boot leader Sebastian Giovinco – who continues to stun in MLS with the most combined goals (15) and assists (11) league wide – and an in-form Jozy Altidore, anything is but certain when they face fierce rivals Montreal Impact on Saturday, Aug. 27 at BMO Field (7:30 p.m. ET, TSN1/4/5, RDS). The Impact still have bragging rights after its 2015 MLS Cup Playoffs victory in one of the most intense postseason games in MLS annals, but Toronto, winner of three out of the last four derby season series, holds a three-match unbeaten mark against Montreal including MLS and Amway Canadian Championship play.

 

First place FC Dallas and an improved Houston Dynamo prepare for final quarrel in Texas Derby

FC Dallas has a tremendous opportunity to become the first MLS team to pull off the treble, as a MLS Cup, a Supporters’ Shield, and a U.S. Open Cup title are all within reasonable reach for the team. Although Dallas has shown its dominance throughout the season, no team knows how to expose its weaknesses better than Texas Derby rival Houston Dynamo, as evidence by a 5-0 Dynamo demolishing of Dallas at home on March 12. Houston enters the match with a two-match undefeated streak and a favorable 4-1-6 home mark, while Dallas, although leading the Supporters’ Shield race, sports a 4-7-2 mark on the road. With the teams splitting the previous two matches this season, bragging rights are up for grabs when Dallas visits BBVA Compass Stadium on Saturday, Aug. 27 in a winner take all Texas Derby matchup (9 p.m. ET). 

 

MLS squads face off in pivotal CONCACAF Champions League matchups

 

Three MLS clubs return to 2016-2017 Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League action this week, which also features the first intra-league meeting between MLS clubs, as Vancouver Whitecaps FC hosts Western Conference foe Sporting Kansas City at BC Place on Tuesday (10 p.m. ET, Facebook). The CCL match will be the clubs’ second clash in three days after SKC downed Vancouver 2-0 at home in MLS regular season play this past Saturday. With Vancouver struggling to secure playoff positioning in MLS action, the Canadian club will have extra motivation stay atop Group C and prove itself on the CCL stage.

 

Current Supporters’ Shield leaders FC Dallas travel to Nicaragua to take on Real Esteli FC on Thursday for its second CCL match of the year (10 p.m. ET, Facebook). FCD took the first meeting between the two sides in a 2-1 win at Toyota Stadium on Aug. 4, which saw goals from Michael Barrios and Maynor Figuero.

  

Tuesday, August 23

10 p.m. ET, Facebook.com – Vancouver Whitecaps FC vs. Sporting Kansas City

 

Thursday, August 25

10 p.m. ET, Facebook.com –Real Esteli FC (Nicaragua) vs. FC Dallas  

 

AT&T Goal of the Week voting now open (Week 24) – CLICK HERE to vote

  •          Sebastian Giovinco (TFC) Gives Toronto early lead with left-footed strike that bounces off both posts

  •          Drew Moor (TFC) Sends a diving header into back of net off a Michael Bradley free kick

  •          Luis Solignac (CHI) Outmaneuvers defender and fires shot far post to give Chicago the early lead

  •          Patrick Mullins (D.C.) Scores equalizer with header near post off a beautiful set piece  

  •          Jozy Altidore (TFC) Powers through multiple defenders and drills right-footed shot into back of the net

  •          Matt Polster (CHI) Sends a rising right-footed strike far post past goalkeeper Evan Bush

  •          Ken Tribbett (PHI) Buries a diving header off a perfectly placed Tranquillo Barnetta free kick

  •          David Horst (HOU) Heads home game winner off a beautiful Cristian Maidana free kick

 

Check It Out

Real Salt Lake: The G.O.A.T. Nick Rimando

LA Galaxy: Zardes, Lletget & Van Damme visit the Empire State Building

Portland Timbers: Timbers players help Stand Together, Operation Pitch Invasion unveil new King's Court

New York City FC: Mikey Lopez Cam: Adidas Store Full Team Signing

San Jose Earthquakes: Henok Goitom: A San Jose Story

Columbus Crew SC: Wil Trapp on throwing the first pitch at the Cincinnati Reds game

 

Quotables

“A lot of work went into the last couple years of putting this together, and these are the days that make all of us at MLS really happy. It brings tears to our eyes.”

MLS Commissioner Don Garber on announcing Minnesota United FC’s official entry into MLS in 2017

Minnesota United is joining Major League Soccer in 2017 (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

 

“I think Clint likes to score goals. I think Clint likes to win. I don’t know that I would classify him a villain. Certainly, (Portland) might think so. Clint is a big-time player. He rises up in big-time games, if you look at the games he’s had for his club, for his country. He’s a big-time player, and he obviously delivered tonight.”

Seattle Sounders FC interim coach Brian Schmetzer on Clint Dempsey’s performance and the relationship vs. rival Portland

Sounders climb back into playoff race by beating Portland (Seattle Times)

 

“I would have never imagined playing with [Lampard and Gerrard] someday. I’m really grateful to be here and thankful for this opportunity.”

New York City FC midfielder Jack Harrison on playing on the same field as English icons Frank Lampard and Steven Gerrard

NYCFC teen steals show from Lampard-Gerrard face-off (New York Post)

 

“We’ve come a long way over four games, and I really like this team. I like our pieces. I like the way we play, and I like the chances we are creating over the course of these four games. I don’t like having six points [from four matches]. We should have more than six points.”

D.C. United coach Ben Olsen on his team’s comeback and recent performance

D.C. United roars back for an unhappy draw against rival Red Bulls (Washington Post)

 

Sweet Tweets

Liam Ridgewell (‏@liam_ridgewell): Wasn't the result we wanted but I think we owe them one next week. Derby Round 2 at home.   #timbers #seattle

https://twitter.com/liam_ridgewell/status/767584103671537664

 

Tim Howard (@TimHowardGK): Thanks for having me @Rockies!

https://twitter.com/TimHowardGK/status/767476549062754304

 

Benny Feilhaber (@b_feilhaber22): Been teaching that guy everything he knows since U-20s.  @SachaKljestan #best10inMLS

https://twitter.com/b_feilhaber22/status/767582534632812548 

 

 Kellyn Acosta (@KellynAcosta): Quick turnaround.. off to Nicaragua!  #WheelsUp

https://twitter.com/KellynAcosta/status/767433681589837824

 

Keegan Rosenberry (@kjroze): Not the result we wanted, but a quick turnaround, and onto Columbus!

https://www.instagram.com/p/BJX8uIRBdmj/  

 

Week 25 Game Previews

Wednesday, August 24

Orlando City SC vs. Toronto FC, 7:30 p.m. ET

  • Orlando City saw their current winless run extended to three games – with a second consecutive draw – following their goalless draw at the Colorado Rapids on Saturday evening. OCSC has won once in four starts since Jason Kreis was named head coach.

  • Sebastian Giovinco scored his 16th goal of the season – tied for the lead in the MLS Golden Boot standings – in TFC’s 3-1 win at Philadelphia Union on Saturday, their fifth win in their last six matches. Giovinco has at least a goal and/or an assist in each of the last six matches, with eight goals and four assists in that span (dating back to July 23); he has played a part in 12 of TFC’s last 15 goals.

  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Kaká converted a penalty kick in the 100th minute – matching the latest goal scored in a regulation match in MLS history – as Orlando City took a 3-2 win June 25 at Camping World Stadium.

  • It was Orlando City’s first victory in the all-time series. Toronto FC won all three meetings between the clubs in Orlando City’s inaugural season in MLS, outscoring OCSC 11-1. TFC won both meetings at BMO Field, three weeks apart, a 4-1 win Aug. 5 and a 5-0 win Aug. 22, also winning 2-0 in Orlando on April 26.

 

Columbus Crew SC vs. Philadelphia Union, 7:30 p.m. ET

  • Crew SC put an end to a 10-game winless run – their first victory since May 28 – with their 2-0 win at the New England Revolution on Saturday evening. Ethan Finlay scored the opening goal in the win, his third goal in the last two matches.

  • Union suffered their second consecutive defeat on their home ground, dropping a 3-1 decision to Toronto FC on Saturday evening at Talen Energy Stadium. Union are winless in their last three home matches.

  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season, and Union have won the first two. Chris Pontius scored a pair of goals, the game-winner coming late in the second half, as Union took a 2-1 win March 12 in Columbus. Pontius then scored one goal and set up another, and Vincent Nogueira and Fabian Herbers netted second-half goals as Union claimed a 3-2 win June 1 at Talen Energy Stadium.

  • The first meeting victory was the first ever for Union in Columbus. Crew SC had won six of seven meetings there prior, with one draw, including the previous three matches in the Ohio state capital.

 

Montreal Impact vs. D.C. United, 7:30 p.m. ET

  • The Impact suffered their second consecutive defeat – their first back-to-back losses since March 19-April 2 – following their 3-0 loss to the Chicago Fire on Saturday evening at Stade Saputo.

  • United extended their current undefeated run to four matches – all at RFK Stadium – with a third draw in that time, coming back for a 2-2 result with the New York Red Bulls on Sunday afternoon. Patrick Mullins scored his second goal in four matches since coming to the club in a trade with New York City FC.

  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Patrick Mullins gave United a first-half lead, but the Impact’s Hernan Bernardello scored his first MLS goal in the 86th minute to leave the teams in a 1-1 draw July 31 at RFK Stadium.

  • United owns the only two victories by the road team in the series history, having won two of the last four meetings at Stade Saputo. They had come away with points on three consecutive visits to Montréal before the Impact won the final meeting last year, 2-0 at Stade Saputo. United have won four of the six meetings lifetime at RFK Stadium, with two draws.

 

Chicago Fire vs. LA Galaxy, 8:30 p.m. ET

  • David Accam scored a goal and added an assist, and Luis Solignac scored his first goal since coming to the club in a trade with Colorado, as the Fire put an end to their MLS-record road winless streak and their club-record road losing streak in a 3-0 victory at the Montréal Impact on Saturday. It was the Fire’s first league win since July 13, a span of six matches.

  • The Galaxy saw their 10-game undefeated streak put to an end in a 1-0 loss at New York City FC on Saturday afternoon, the defeat also ending a run of three consecutive draws. The Galaxy also had a 10-game undefeated streak in league play this season from March 19-May 22.

  • The Galaxy have not lost to the Fire since 2010, a 3-2 Chicago victory in Carson on Aug. 1. In the seven meetings since, the Galaxy have won five with two draws, including a 2-0 win on March 6, 2015 at StubHub Center in the only meeting between the teams last season.

  • The Fire have not defeated the Galaxy in Bridgeview since 2008, with two draws and three losses in five home meetings since.

 

Houston Dynamo vs. Seattle Sounders FC, 9 p.m. ET

  • The Dynamo put an end to a six-game winless run, defeating the San Jose Earthquakes 2-1 at Avaya Stadium on Friday evening. It was the club’s first victory since July 2, the second in 12 matches after Wade Barrett took over as interim head coach.

  • Clint Dempsey scored a pair of goals as Sounders FC won a third consecutive game in league play for the first time this season, recording a 3-1 win against the Portland Timbers on Sunday evening at CenturyLink Field. Dempsey has five goals and one assist over the three-game winning run.

  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Giles Barnes gave the Dynamo a first-half lead, but Sounders FC’s Chad Marshall scored deep into second-half stoppage time for the equalizer as the teams reached a 1-1 draw April 10 at BBVA Compass Stadium.

  • The Dynamo have never lost to Sounders FC in Houston. In six meetings all-time there, the Dynamo have won three, with three draws. The Dynamo also won a game in the 2009 MLS Cup Playoffs.

  • Sounders FC have never lost to the Dynamo in Seattle. In six league meetings all-time, Sounders FC have won five, with one draw, outscoring Houston 10-2, following their 1-0 win last April 4 at CenturyLink Field. Sounders FC also won a U.S. Open Cup match at home vs. Houston; the teams played a scoreless draw in Seattle in the 2009 MLS Cup Playoffs.

 

San Jose Earthquakes vs. New England Revolution, 10:30 p.m. ET

  • The Quakes had their five-game undefeated run overall put to an end, dropping a 2-1 decision to the Houston Dynamo on Friday evening at Avaya Stadium. The Quakes have not won back-to-back games since winning the opening two matches of the season, March 6 and 13 vs. Colorado and Portland.

  • The Revolution suffered a fourth consecutive loss – their second in a row at Gillette Stadium – in their 2-0 defeat by Columbus Crew SC on Saturday evening. It was a second consecutive attacking shutout for the Revs on their home ground.

  • The Revolution have won the last three meetings between the teams over the last three seasons, including a 2-1 win at Gillette Stadium last year in the only match between the clubs.

  • This is the first meeting ever at Avaya Stadium. When the Revolution won 2-1 in 2014 in the final encounter at Buck Shaw Stadium, it was their first win in northern California since 2009. The Revolution have won the last two meetings at Gillette Stadium, their first home wins vs. the Quakes since the 2009 season.

 

Friday, August 26

Real Salt Lake vs. Colorado Rapids, 8 p.m. ET (Univision)

  • Real remained undefeated at Rio Tinto Stadium this season, winning a second consecutive home match as Jamíson Olave scored the game’s lone goal in a victory against FC Dallas on Saturday evening. RSL is 7-0-5 at home this season, one of four teams still without a home defeat in MLS this year (also: Colorado, FC Dallas, LA Galaxy).

  • The Rapids extended their current undefeated streak to three matches, having now lost just once in their last 19 games, dating back to April 9, reaching a second consecutive draw in a goalless result with Orlando City SC on Saturday evening at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.

  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season for the Rocky Mountain Cup, a trophy awarded by the supporters groups of both teams, and each team has won 1-0 on their home ground. Joao Plata scored the game’s only goal to lead Real to victory April 9 at Rio Tinto Stadium; Jermaine Jones scored the lone goal in the Rapids win May 7 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.

  • Real have a 13-game home undefeated streak alive vs. Colorado. Since the Rapids last win in Utah, a 2-0 victory April 30, 2007 at Rice-Eccles Stadium, Real have won nine games with four draws. Colorado has never won at Rio Tinto Stadium (0-7-4 all-time in league play).

 

Saturday, August 27

D.C. United vs. Chicago Fire, 7 p.m. ET

  • United return home following a midweek trip to Montréal, which ended a four-game homestand where they went 1-0-3. That home stretch followed a four-game road swing July 1-23, where United went 0-2-2.

  • The Fire’s 3-0 win at the Montréal Impact on Saturday was their first on their travels since July 23, 2014, a span of 36 away matches without victory. It also ended their club-record road losing run after nine games, which equaled the 10th-longest such streak in league annals.

  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. The Fire’s Jonathan Campbell and United’s Patrick Nyarko traded goals on either side of halftime to leave the teams in a 1-1 draw April 30 at Toyota Park.

  • United have not lost in the last five meetings in the meetings, winning four consecutive games before the draw in the first meeting this year. United have won the last three matches at RFK Stadium, undefeated in their last four home meetings with the Fire, dating back to 2015.

 

Philadelphia Union vs. Sporting Kansas City, 7 p.m. ET

  • Sporting won their sixth consecutive home match – their longest since a club-record seven-game home winning streak during the 2000 season, and matching the longest in MLS this season – with their 2-0 win against Vancouver Whitecaps FC on Saturday evening at Children’s Mercy Park. Benny Feilhaber scored a goal and added an assist; he has a goal and three assists over his last four matches.

  • The teams met once a year ago, Sporting taking a 3-2 win April 5 in Kansas City. It was Sporting’s second consecutive home win in the series; Union had taken points on their previous two trips to face SKC.

  • Union won the last meeting between the teams in Chester, a 2-1 win Oct. 18, 2014, ending a two-game Sporting KC winning streak there.

 

Toronto FC vs. Montreal Impact, 7:30 p.m. ET

  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Sebastian Giovinco scored goals in each half, leading Toronto FC to a 2-0 win April 23 at Stade Saputo.

  • Since coming to MLS, the Impact have not won in Toronto, with six losses and four draws in 10 meetings in all competitions at BMO Field. TFC won both league meetings there last season. TFC have won two of the three league meetings all-time at Stade Saputo; the Impact did take a 3-0 win in the Knockout Round of the MLS Cup Playoffs last year, in TFC’s first-ever postseason match. The Impact have won two league meetings at Olympic Stadium.

  • The teams have met in every season they’ve been together in MLS in the Canadian Championship, with the Impact winning the title in 2014 by defeating TFC 2-1 on aggregate in the final. They’ve met four times in the semifinals, each team advancing twice, with Toronto FC going through this year, winning 4-2 at BMO Field before the teams reached a goalless draw in Montréal.

  • Jozy Altidore scored in a third consecutive match as TFC extended their undefeated streak to six matches – with five wins in that time – in their 3-1 win at Philadelphia Union. Altidore has a goal and/or an assist now in five consecutive games, with four goals and an assist in that stretch.

  • The Impact were shut out for the first time since June 18 in their last match, the 3-0 home loss to the Chicago Fire on Saturday. They saw a string of four consecutive draws on the road put to an end in their last match, the 3-1 defeat at the New York Red Bulls on Aug. 13.

 

Columbus Crew SC vs. San Jose Earthquakes, 7:30 p.m. ET

  • Federico Higuaín scored his first goal since May 7 – when he netted a pair of goals – as Crew SC put a stop to their 10-game winless run in the 2-0 win at the New England Revolution. Crew SC have reached six consecutive draws at Mapfre Stadium, dating back to June 18, equaling the all-time MLS record for consecutive home ties set by the Chicago Fire in 2011.

  • The Quakes won the lone meeting the teams a year ago, a 2-0 victory May 16 at Avaya Stadium, snapping a string of four successive draws in the all-time series.

  • Crew SC have not defeated the Quakes since Aug. 8, 2009 – a 3-0 win at Candlestick Park in San Francisco. The Quakes have won two of the nine meetings since, with seven draws.

  • The teams have played to three consecutive draws in Columbus; Crew SC have not defeated San Jose at home since May 27, 2009, a 2-1 victory.

 

Houston Dynamo vs. FC Dallas, 9 p.m. ET

  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season in league play. Andrew Wenger scored one goal and set up two others as the Dynamo rolled to a 5-0 victory March 12 at BBVA Compass Stadium, the most goals scored by a team and the largest margin of victory in the Texas Derby. The teams then reached a 1-1 draw June 2 at Toyota Stadium.

  • The first meeting victory snapped a five-game FC Dallas winning streak in the series, over the last three seasons. FCD had won the previous two league meetings at BBVA Compass Stadium, just their second and third wins all-time in Houston in 14 meetings in all competitions, the first since 2010. The last Dynamo victory in Frisco came in 2011, FCD winning three home meetings in a row before the draw in the last encounter.

  • The teams also met in a U.S. Open Cup quarterfinal, Fabian Castillo scoring the game’s only goal to send FC Dallas through, July 20 at BBVA Compass Stadium.

  • FC Dallas had their four-game undefeated run put to an end in their last league match, a 1-0 loss at Real Salt Lake on Saturday evening.

 

LA Galaxy vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC, 10:30 p.m. ET

  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season. Robbie Keane and Jeff Larentowicz netted goals as the Galaxy claimed a 2-0 victory July 4 at StubHub Center; they reached a scoreless draw April 2 at BC Place.

  • The Galaxy win in the last meeting ended a three-game Whitecaps FC undefeated streak in the series, after winning both league meetings between the teams in 2015. The Galaxy were 9-1-2 vs. Vancouver over the first 12 meetings between the teams, before last season.

  • The Whitecaps FC win in the second meeting a year ago, on June 6, was their first ever vs. the Galaxy in Carson. The Galaxy had won the first six regular season home meetings with Whitecaps FC, outscoring them 13-1; they also took a victory there in the 2012 MLS Cup Playoffs, a 2-1 win in the Knockout Round.

  • Whitecaps FC return to league play in the Galaxy match with four consecutive losses in MLS matches, their winless streak now at six league games following the 2-0 loss at Sporting Kansas City on Saturday evening, which precedes their CONCACAF Champions League encounter three nights later at BC Place.

 

Sunday, August 28

New York Red Bulls vs. New England Revolution, 2:30 p.m. ET (ESPN)

  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Diego Fagundez scored the game’s only goal in the 55th minute to lead the Revolution to victory, April 1 at Gillette Stadium. The home team has won each of the last five meetings in league play (New England winning three).

  • When the Revolution defeated the Red Bulls 2-1 at Red Bull Arena in the first leg of the 2014 Eastern Conference Championship, it was their first win of any sort in New Jersey since 2007, ending a 10-game winless streak there in all competitions.

  • When the Red Bulls won 2-0 in Foxborough on June 8, 2014, it was the first for New York in New England since 2002. The Revolution had won 13 of 19 meetings in league and MLS Cup play since that previous New York win.

  • Bradley Wright-Phillips collected a goal and added an assist as the Red Bulls extended their current undefeated streak to eight matches in a 2-2 draw at D.C. United on Sunday afternoon. Wright-Phillips now has 15 goals, sitting in third place in the MLS Golden Boot standings; he is one of four players in MLS history to reach the 15-goal mark in three or more consecutive seasons.

 

Portland Timbers vs. Seattle Sounders FC, 5 p.m. ET (ESPN1)

  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season, in the back end of a home-and-home series over two weeks, and each team has claimed a 3-1 win at home. Diego Valeri scored a pair of goals and Fanendo Adi also tallied in the Timbers’ win July 17 at Providence Park; Clint Dempsey scored a pair of goals in Sounders FC’s win Sunday at CenturyLink Field.

  • The Timbers have won the last two meetings in Portland, including a 4-1 win June 28, 2015 at Providence Park – the three-goal victory equaling Portland’s largest margin of victory against the Sounders since a 3-0 win on June 11, 1977, at Civic Stadium.

  • The Timbers have never won in Seattle in MLS regular season play, Sounders FC now with a 5-0-2 league record in games at CenturyLink Field. But the Timbers did win there in the MLS Cup Playoffs in 2013.

  • Following his two-goal outing in the win in Seattle, Clint Dempsey has scored eight goals in seven league meetings with the Timbers. Since his return from the U.S. national team for Copa América Centenario, Dempsey has six goals and two assists in seven matches.

  • Fanendo Adi has now scored six goals in seven league meetings all-time against Sounders FC, now with goals in each league meeting this season.

 

Orlando City SC vs. New York City FC, 7 p.m. ET (FS1)

  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season. Kevin Molino netted the equalizer deep in second-half stoppage time to leave the teams in a 2-2 result May 29 at Yankee Stadium; Cyle Larin netted the game’s lone goal after seven minutes and Orlando City held out the rest of the way for a victory March 18 in The Bronx.

  • The win in the first meeting by Orlando City is the only road win in the five all-time meetings between the expansion class of 2015. City has won once, with one draw, in the two meetings in Orlando; in the first meeting between a pair of expansion clubs to open their MLS histories, the teams reached a 1-1 draw there on March 8, 2015.

  • While Orlando City have not won on the road since their first away match of the season – the 1-1 draw at NYCFC on March 18, a span now of 11 games – they have reached four consecutive road draws following their scoreless result at Colorado. The all-time MLS record is five consecutive away draws, set three times previously.

  • David Villa scored his 16th goal of the season – putting him in a tie for the lead in the MLS Golden Boot standings – as NYCFC claimed a 1-0 win against the LA Galaxy on Saturday afternoon at Yankee Stadium. It extended the club’s undefeated run to four games; Villa has three goals in the last two matches.