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Castillo: Would an official double-match week test MLS teams' mettle?

This past week of matches found fans and teams wrapped up in some flashy, bitter rivalries. But of course, while those loomed large, a busy week saw every team take the field, and many of them take it twice. The result? A high-stakes slate that nearly cemented some postseason fortunes, offering some surprises both pleasant and otherwise, depending on where you stand. 

The double-match grind tested teams’ resiliency and depth – but also showed at least a few spots for new optimism.

A quick rundown of which teams bettered and worsened their fortune over Week 25:

  • After drawing with Houston at home on Wednesday night, FC Dallas’ faltering continued when they traveled to Columbus. That 2-1 loss means they finally dipped below the playoff line – scary news for the winners of last year’s Supporters’ Shield.
  • On the other hand, Columbus, while riding a rollercoaster through the beginning stretch of the season, looks like they can feel pretty comfortable about making it to the postseason.
  • Vancouver’s draw vs. Seattle and win over Orlando means they, too, are sitting fairly pretty in the West. 
  • Real Salt Lake, too, proved they could be a potential dark horse in the playoffs race; since retooling lately they’ve been cooking with gas. A little more of a slump from Dallas, and their recent performance means they could inch into that last playoff spot in the West. 

Most of the rest of the results, whether for teams who played two matches in the week or just one, pretty much solidified their spots. So with a pivotal turning point in the season done and dusted, should we make a proper double-match week a Thing, perhaps around Labor Day, as the season definitely swivels towards postseason hopes?

I would be for it, if it doesn’t mess with any international breaks and teams have their full player pool from which to choose. A pivotal moment in which to prove a team’s mettle and depth could add some interest to the beginning of the countdown to the playoffs.

What do you think?

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