MLS Cup - closeup shot - 2018
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MLS Cup Playoffs: Who can host MLS Cup and what needs to happen?

The Audi 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs roll on Thursday night, with a pair of tantalizing matches. 

Atlanta United got things kicked off, beating the Philadelphia Union 2-1 to earn a place in the Eastern Conference Final. Soon, LAFC face the LA Galaxy (10:30 pm ET | ESPN, TSN, TVAS). On Wednesday, Toronto FC and the Seattle Sounders advanced. 

So, with five remaining teams — soon to be four — what can happen for each side to host MLS Cup on November 10? Well, look no further. We got you covered. Essentially, this is a broken-down version of the priorities, determined by total points in the regular season:

  1. LAFC (72 points)
  2. Atlanta United (58 points)
  3. Seattle Sounders (56 points)
  4. LA Galaxy (51 points)
  5. Toronto FC (50 points)

If LAFC beat the Galaxy, then the Sounders, they will host MLS Cup no matter who they face in the East. After winning the Supporters' Shield, they guaranteed they wouldn't play a road playoff game this fall. 

If the Galaxy beat LAFC, well, then it gets a bit tricker. In that case, Atlanta United would have priority to hosting MLS Cup should they get past the Union then Toronto. If Atlanta are also eliminated, then the Sounders would have inside track at hosting MLS Cup. 

If the lowest two seeds remaining — the Galaxy and TFC — meet each other in MLS Cup, then the Galaxy would host. That's the only scenario in which the final is at Dignity Health Sports Park. Toronto FC will be on the road as long as they continue playing this postseason. 


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