We made it! For those of you who missed the game in Dallas we drew 2-2. We did not start off very strong and were punished fairly quickly, but as this team has done all year we never gave up and in fact even though we scored two great goals to take the lead, we actually could have been up by three or four at the break. In the second half Dallas took chances going forward and tied it in the 63rd minute. Then we held on. Eric Quill came close, Jason Kries had a free kick sail over the bar and in the final seconds Cory Gibbs missed the goal with a header by inches. So we made it by inches, but the bottom line is we are in the playoffs.
The beauty of professional sports in the United States and Canada is that all that really matters is the playoffs. Sure it helps to have a successful regular season to help rest players down the stretch and secure home field advantage but if you win in the playoffs does anyone really care how you did during the regular season?
I'm sure I've said it before; we have been consistently inconsistent this season both at home and on the road. We've only won five times at home this season but we have only lost twice. We only won four games on the road this year but we've only lost twice in our last six road games and came from behind in our last two to tie. What does this show? Just that anything could happen in the playoffs.
It has been a difficult year both on and off the field. To say that the possibility of moving has not been on everybody's minds would be stretching the truth. We all want to stay in the Bay Area and continue to play professional soccer for the great fans here. So when we, like you, read every other week where we may or may not be going it does weigh on you. The beauty of the playoffs is that we can easily put all that behind us and focus on the remaining four games. It doesn't matter where we go, all that matters is getting results and finding a way to play for another MLS Cup.
Our first round is against Kansas City. They are a very good team, well balanced and defensively sound. It is a difficult match up but one where there really is no home field advantage. We had a strong game on the 9th of October only to tie 0-0 thanks to some good goalkeeping and a little help from the woodwork. So there is no reason to fear them, but every reason to respect them. Sunday will be very important for us but also we need to realize it really is only the first half of a 180-minute game and try not to expose ourselves too much in an attempt to take a lead back to KC.
I'm looking forward to putting our regular season behind us and playing for the trophy we have been defending all year. I hope all of you come out to support us on Sunday afternoon.