Monday, November 01, 2004

MLS Playoff Update

Well - I was right on my first round MLS playoff predictions - in one out of four series. Ouch.

In the East, the New England Revolution defeated the Supporter's Shield winning Columbus Crew by a 2-1 aggregate score. DC United defeated Metrostars 4-0 on aggregate.

Out West, #1 seed Kansas City Wizards came from behind to pull out a 3-2 aggregate victory over the defending champion San Jose Earthquakes. In the other matchup, the Los Angeles Galaxy prevailed over the Colorado Rapids 2-1 aggregate.

So, we have the Revs travelling to DC for the Eastern Conference final. It's a one off match, winner to the MLS Cup. The Revs have been really down in 2004, but a final push got them into the playoffs, and they sent off the #1 seed, who hadn't seen a loss since June. United rolled over Metros and is in fine form. But that victory was very costly with key contributor Dema Kovelenko and MLS First XI and New Zealand International defender Ryan Nelson being suspended for the Conference Final due to yellow card accumulation. Those losses will be difficult for DC to overcome and in the end, I think it will prove their undoing. Prediction: DC 0:1 NE (TV = FoxSportsWorld, HDNet, Direct Kick; Sat. Nov. 6, 6:00 Central)

The LA Galaxy go on the road to face the Wizards, where they were 0-1-1 in 2004. This should be an interesting matchup between the #1 and #2 seeds. These were the two best teams in teh conference all year, and both are playing well down the stretch. To me, this matchup is really a pick 'em, but I give the edge to KC because they feel like the team of destiny this year. Overcoming injury to last season's MLS MVP (Preki), last season's leading scorer (Simutekov) and a regular U.S. International (Klein), this squad has just kept getting results week after week. Playing at home should be the edge they need to get the result that will take them to MLS Cup. Prediction: KC 2:1 LA (TV = FoxSportsWorld, HDNet, Direct Kick; Fri. Nov. 5, 6:30 Central)

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