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MLS Cup Playoff scenarios: LA Galaxy can clinch playoff berth with result vs. San Jose Earthquakes

Robbie Keane, LA Galaxy (August 31, 2013)

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USA TODAY Sports

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The Portland Timbers and Real Salt Lake on Saturday joined the New York Red Bulls and Sporting Kansas City as the first four MLS Cup playoff teams, leaving six postseason berths up for grabs.

The Timbers clinched their playoff spot before kicking off on Saturday night, since a 2-0 loss by the Seattle Sounders earlier in the day meant the Timbers could drop no lower than 5th place in the Western Conference. 

RSL's point at JELD-WEN Field on Saturday night took them to 53 for the season, ensuring they also cannot finish lower than 5th in the West with one match remaining.

While six postseason spots are yet to be filled, we know they won't be claimed by the Columbus Crew and Vancouver Whitecaps, who both suffered 3-2 losses on Saturday night, which sealed their elimination.

Heading into Sunday's two match-ups, only LA vs. SJ can deliver further postseason verdicts. In fact, the entire West playoff field will be set with a loss by the Earthquakes:

Seattle Sounders FC will clinch a berth in the MLS Cup Playoffs IF

  • San Jose Earthquakes lose or tie vs. LA Galaxy on Sunday

Colorado Rapids will clinch a berth in the MLS Cup Playoffs IF

  • San Jose Earthquakes lose vs. LA Galaxy on Sunday

LA Galaxy will clinch a berth in the MLS Cup Playoffs IF

  • LA Galaxy win or tie vs. San Jose Earthquakes on Sunday

San Jose Earthquakes will be eliminated from playoff contention IF

  • San Jose Earthquakes lose vs. LA Galaxy on Sunday

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