What, you thought Chivas USA was going to limp meekly into the darkness of a reported two-year hiatus and subsequent rebrand?
Sure, there was plenty of evidence, from the fact that it hadn’t scored a single goal against anybody but the Sounders since July 20 and hasn’t even held a lead against anybody but the Sounders since July 12.
Then Sunday happened and provided the strongest reminder of that season that just when you think you’ve figured out this league … Chivas goes and stuns Real Salt Lake 1-0 via Felix Borja’s lone second-half goal at the StubHub Center.
That’s the same RSL still fighting desperately to claw out of the fourth/fifth-place play-in game in the West going down to a team already long since eliminated. And it could have even been worse if Cubo Torres’ penalty kick hadn’t been saved by Nick Rimando.
– The L.A. Galaxy kept pace with the Sounders in the Supporter’s Shield chase courtesy of a comfortable 3-0 victory over Toronto — but will be without Robbie Keane and possibly Landon Donovan and Omar Gonzalez for next weekend’s showdown with F.C. Dallas thanks to national team commitments.
– D.C. United continued its remarkable turnaround by clinching a playoff berth less than a year after finishing bottom of the Eastern Conference. The 0-0 draw with Sporting Kansas City that locked it up, though, was even duller than the final score would suggest.
– Vancouver and Portland continued to make things interesting the fight for the final Western Conference playoff spot, the former courtesy of a 2-0 win over Dallas and the latter thanks to a narrow 2-1 takedown of San Jose. The Whitecaps hold a one-point lead in the standings, but though both sides are locked on 10 wins for the first tiebreaker, the Timbers have the edge both in goal difference and goals scored.
– Does anybody want to qualify in the East? New York took a massive step toward the postseason with its gritty 1-0 victory over Houston. Toronto, Columbus and Philadelphia, though, all dropped three points in a race that could come down to a single one.
Here’s where we stand through 31 games, standings courtesy of MLSSoccer.com: