231 days after First Kick, the 2016 MLS regular season is a mere three hours from its conclusion. Decision Day — 10 games, all kicking off at 4 p.m. ET. Back on March 6, 20 teams dreamt of lifting MLS Cup in December. Nearly eight months later, eight playoff places have been clinched, with another four on the line on Sunday — one in the Eastern Conference, three in the Western Conference. Also still up for grabs: the Supporters’ Shield. FC Dallas have the inside track on the regular-season “title” and home-field advantage for as long as they may compete in the postseason. Bradley Wright-Phillips (23 goals) and David Villa (22) are neck-and-neck for the Golden Boot, with BWP currently holding
Jack Harrison scored in the 75th minute and Khiry Shelton followed two minutes later as New York City FC defeated Columbus 4-1 Sunday at Yankee Stadium to wrap up the MLS regular season. NYCFC advances to the postseason, where they'll be the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs. They will face the highest reamining seed of the one-game first round matches (No. 6 Philadelphia-No. 3 Toronto; No. 5 D.C United-No. 4 Montreal). in a two-game series determined by aggregate score. New York Red Bulls will be the top seed.
Of the six teams remaining in Major League Soccer’s Eastern Conference, you could argue there are three distinct pairings. You have red-hot traditional sides in DC United and the New York Red Bulls; There are the big-name driven, deep squads from Toronto FC and New York City FC, and finally the two relative unknowns truly deserving of “wildcard” status in the Philadelphia Union Montreal Impact. Sure the table tends to tell us who’s who in the pecking order. It’s hard to bet against the Red Bulls seeing they haven’t lost since July 3, and Frank Lampard has somehow quietly been a wrecking ball thanks to dynamite performances from captain David Villa and world-class maestro Andrea Pirlo. But there