Going into the final month of the season, it's time to start taking out our fixtures and our tables and seeing what possibilities there are for playoff positions. In the Western Conference both Seattle and Real Salt Lake can clinch playoff berths this weekend with victories as three points would put the clubs at 54 points each.
Fifty-four for Seattle would put them nine points clear of Colorado with only nine points left to the Rapids. This also means that LA needs a victory this weekend over Chivas USA to ensure they can still catch the leaders in the Western Conference. For Salt Lake, a victory over Dallas would put them ten points clear of the San Jose Earthquakes who will only have nine points left to them after coming back from a bye week.
The Galaxy can't clinch a playoff berth this weekend, but with a victory over already eliminated Chivas USA they'd be at worst six points off first place in the Western Conference. Seattle will still have twelve points available to them in October with a match in hand.
At this point for LA, it's going to be an uphill battle to finish in the top three. If Salt Lake gets all six points from remaining home matches and none from their road trip to Portland, they'll finish with 57 points. LA would need to sweep their remaining matches just to catch them. That's not even considering that Portland have enough points available to finish with 58 points if they win three out of four.
Since Portland host both Seattle and Salt Lake in that stretch, those results are going to be crucial. If LA have any hope of a top three finish, draws in those matches are their best friend.