Blanco v. Beckman
The MLS playoff system sucks. It's patently ridiculous for 8 out of 13 teams in a league to make the playoffs. It cheapens the regular season to a degree that's insulting to fans who pay to see matches all season long. But I understand the rationale. MLS brass want to keep playoff hopes alive, and therefore fan interest high, in as many cities as possible. And last weekend the league saw the best attendance of the season, with four out of five games drawing better than 20,000 fans. (The exception was Chivas USA, which apparently has a following approaching that of the Indomitable Drinky Crows .)
However silly the post-season format, it sets up some pretty damn interesting soccer matches this final weekend of the season. Four teams are still vying for two playoff spots, including the long-left-for-dead L.A. Galaxy, riding an improbable five game winning streek. If they take all three points against New York on Thursday, it sets up a winner-take-all showdown with the Chicago Fire on Sunday afternoon. This should be a grand spectacle. Two of the hottest teams in the league featuring two of the best attacking players in MLS history fighting for their post-season lives.
And best of all ... I will be there!
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