MLS Week 23 News & Notes - Unprecedented Race Could be Ahead for No. 1 Spot Overall in MLS

MLS MEDIA RESOURCES: WEEK 23 NEWS & NOTES
News and notes and statistical trends from around Major League Soccer
 
UNPRECEDENTED RACE COULD BE AHEAD FOR NO. 1 SPOT OVERALL IN MLS
 
An unprecedented finish to a Major League Soccer season could be ahead this week, with four teams still with a chance to claim the best overall record in the league and the top seed in the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs.
 
Four teams can all finish atop the top spot overall – the Philadelphia Union, Toronto FC, Columbus Crew SC and the Portland Timbers – entering the final week of the season. If all four teams can still lay claim to the top spot on Decision Day, it will be the first time in Major League Soccer history four teams have come into the final matches of the season with the possibility of finishing first in the league standings.
 
In all, the top spot in the overall standings has been decided on the season’s final day on 10 occasions, last in 2018, when the New York Red Bulls overturned a one-point deficit to finish No. 1 overall, joining the 2001 Miami Fusion as the only teams to overtake a team ahead to clinch the top spot.
 
On only one occasion have three teams come into the final round of matches with a chance to end as No. 1, in 2013, when the Red Bulls also took the honor. For Columbus Crew SC and the Portland Timbers, their bid to remain in the hunt will begin on Wednesday night, when they play Orlando City SC and the Colorado Rapids respectively, aiming to set up a Decision Day showdown like no other.
 
OVERALL MLS STANDINGS – 2020 SEASON
 
PTS
PPG
GP
W
L
T
GD
Philadelphia Union
44
2.00
22
13
4
5
+22
Toronto FC
44
2.00
22
13
4
5
+8
Columbus Crew SC
38
1.81
21
11
5
5
+15
Portland Timbers
38
1.81
21
11
5
5
+12
 
 
UNION, TORONTO FC HEAD TO DECISION DAY WITH MODELS OF CONSISTENCY
 
With one game still to play, the Philadelphia Union and Toronto FC are also on track for one of the most consistent seasons in league history.
 
Heading into Decision Day, both clubs have taken 44 points from their 22 games this season – an average of 2.00 points per game.
 
In MLS history, only six teams have finished a season with 2.00 points per game or better, the record set by the Los Angeles Galaxy in 1998 (2.13). A win for the Union and TFC would give them an average of 2.04 points per game this year, which would rank fourth overall in league annals.
MOST STANDINGS POINTS PER GAME, SINGLE SEASON
 
 
W
L
T
PTS
PPG
1998
Los Angeles Galaxy
24
8
0
68
2.13
2019
Los Angeles Football Club
21
4
9
72
2.12
2018
New York Red Bulls
22
7
5
71
2.09
2017
Toronto FC
20
5
9
69
2.03
2018
Atlanta United
21
7
6
69
2.03
2005
San Jose Earthquakes
18
4
10
64
2.00
 
 
 
GALAXY’S CRISTIAN PAVÓN CHASING RECORD INVOLVEMENT IN TEAM GOALS
 
Cristian Pavón of the LA Galaxy is in the hunt for the single most valuable season to his team statistically in MLS history.
 
With two games still to play, Pavón has 10 goals and seven assists – among the Galaxy’s 26 goals through their first 20 games this season. Pavón has thus been involved in 65.4 percent of his team’s goals – the third-greatest average in the league’s 25 seasons according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
 
Sebastien Le Toux holds the single-season record, involved in 71.4 percent of the Philadelphia Union’s goals in 2010 (14 goals, 11 assists). Only one other player in MLS history has been involved in 65 percent of his team’s goals – Sebastian Giovinco with Toronto FC in 2015, who was involved in 65.5 percent of the club’s 58 goals that year (22 goals, 16 assists).
 
HIGHEST PERCENTAGE OF INVOLVEMENT IN TEAM’S GOALS
 
YEAR
TEAM
G
A
TM GLS
PCT
Sebastien Le Toux
2010
PHI
14
11
35
71.4%
Sebastian Giovinco
2015
TOR
22
16
58
65.5%
Cristian Pavon
2020
LA
10
7
26
65.4%
Zlatan Ibrahimovic
2019
LA
30
7
58
63.8%
Sebastian Giovinco
2016
TOR
17
15
51
62.7%
 
Credit: Elias Sports Bureau
 
MLS WEEK 23 – LOOK AHEAD
 
ORLANDO CITY SC vs. COLUMBUS CREW SC
Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #215)
Exploria Stadium, Orlando, Fla.
7:30 p.m. ET (FOX 35 Plus; FS-OH)
 
REFEREE: Ramy Touchan. AR1 (bench): Logan Brown; AR2 (opposite): Gjovalin Bori; 4th: Elvis Osmanovic; VAR: Jose Carlos Rivero; AVAR: Kyle Longville
MLS Career: 35 games; FC/gm: 26.1; Y/gm: 4.1; R: 6; pens: 5
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Orlando City 4 wins, 18 goals … Crew SC 5 wins, 21 goals … Ties 3
AT ORLANDO: Orlando City 3 wins, 12 goals … Crew SC 2 wins, 11 goals … Ties 2
  • Orlando City SC won their second match in a row, defeating the Montréal Impact by the game’s only goal at Red Bull Arena on Sunday evening. Rookie Daryl Dike scored for a third consecutive game for the OCSC goal, his seventh goal of the year.
  • Crew SC kept their hopes afloat for the top seed overall in the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs, defeating the Philadelphia Union 2-1 at Mapfre Stadium on Sunday afternoon. Krisztian Németh scored the game-winning goal in the 84th minute, his first since joining the club.
  • The teams met twice a season ago, and Orlando City won both. Chris Mueller and Tesho Akindele netted goals on either side of halftime as Orlando City took a 2-0 win on June 29 at Mapfre Stadium; Benji Michel scored the game’s only goal in the 84th minute for the win July 13 at Exploria Stadium.
  • Orlando City have won the last three meetings in the series, snapping a six-game Crew SC undefeated streak in the series, including four wins. The last OCSC victory in the series had come Aug. 1, 2015.
  • The OCSC win in the first meeting last year was their first ever in Columbus, on their fifth visit. OCSC has won the last two matchups in Orlando, their first home wins in the series since the club’s inaugural MLS season of 2015.
OCSC: The coaching victory was No. 113 for Óscar Pareja in 259 games, tied for eighth-most all-time in MLS (along with Ben Olsen). … Mauricio Pereyra collected his sixth assist of the season, his last coming on Oct. 3, tied for 12th-most in MLS this season.
 
CREW SC: Two games after scoring his first career goal in his 104th career MLS appearance, Artur scored for a second time in league play. … Luís Díaz collected his third assist, his last coming Sept. 6. … Harrison Afful recorded a second assist, both coming in the last seven games.
 
 
MINNESOTA UNITED FC vs. CHICAGO FIRE FC
Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #227)
Allianz Field, St. Paul, Minn.
7 p.m. CT (FS-North; ESPN+ / WGN-TV)
 
REFEREE: Victor Rivas. AR1 (bench): Jason White; AR2 (opposite): Matthew Nelson; 4th: Fotis Bazakos; VAR: Jorge Gonzalez; AVAR: Peter Balciunas
MLS Career: 15 games; FC/gm: 26.1; Y/gm: 4.3; R: 3; pens: 9
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: MNUFC 2 wins, 4 goals … Fire 1 win, 4 goals … Ties 0
AT MINNESOTA: MNUFC 1 win, 2 goals … Fire 0 wins, 1 goal … Ties 0
  • Minnesota United had their match with Sporting Kansas City at the weekend canceled. In their last match, MNUFC extended their undefeated streak to six games with a second consecutive win, defeating the Colorado Rapids 2-1 at Allianz Field on Oct. 28. Following the match, MNUFC had a second consecutive berth in the MLS Cup Playoffs confirmed.
  • Fire FC stayed in the hunt for a berth in the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs, gaining a fourth result in the last five matches with a 1-1 draw with Nashville SC at Nissan Stadium on Saturday evening. Boris Sekulić netted the Fire goal, his second of the year.
  • The teams met once a season ago. Nicolás Gaitán and Aleksandar Katai scored first-half goals as the Fire took a 2-0 win May 11 at SeatGeek Stadium.
  • Minnesota United FC won the first two meetings between the teams, once at each home ground. They won in 2017 in Bridgeview, Ill., before winning the next year at TCF Bank Stadium.
MNUFC: Robin Lod scored his sixth goal of the season, his last coming on Sept. 23. … Emanuel Reynoso collected his fourth assist of the season, his second in the last five games.
 
FIRE FC: Mauricio Pineda recorded his second assist, the first coming on July 14 in the opening group game for Fire FC in the MLS is Back Tournament.
 
 
NASHVILLE SC vs. FC DALLAS
Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #286)
Nissan Stadium, Nashville, Tenn.
7:30 p.m. CT (TSN; MyTV 30; FS-SW / FCDTV)
 
REFEREE: Marcos de Oliveira. AR1 (bench): Andrew Bigelow; AR2 (opposite): Brooke Mayo; 4th: Robert Sibiga; VAR: Drew Fischer; AVAR: Kathryn Nesbitt
MLS Career: 41 games; FC/gm: 25.0; Y/gm: 3.6; R: 4; pens: 13
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Nashville SC 2 wins, 4 goal … FC Dallas 0 wins, 0 goals … Ties 1
AT NASHVILLE: Nashville SC 1 win, 3 goals … FC Dallas 0 wins, 0 goals … Ties 0
  • Nashville SC extended their home undefeated streak to nine matches and their overall undefeated run to five games, reaching a 1-1 draw with Chicago Fire FC at Nissan Stadium on Saturday evening. Daniel Ríos scored his fourth goal of the season for the Nashville tally.
  • FC Dallas won their second match on the trot, securing their place in the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs with a 3-0 win against the Houston Dynamo on Saturday afternoon at Toyota Stadium. Fafa Picault scored a pair of goals and Franco Jara found the back of the net for a second successive game for FCD.
  • The teams are meeting for the fourth time this season. In the last matchup, Randall Leal, Jhonder Cadíz and Daniel Ríos netted goals as Nashville SC cruised to a 3-0 win at Nissan Stadium on Oct. 20. The teams first met twice in four days at Toyota Stadium in the first matches in the continuation of play in the 2020 MLS season, first on Aug. 12 as David Accam scored the game’s only goal to give Nashville SC the club’s first win in its MLS history, then the teams reached a goalless draw on Aug. 16.
NASHVILLE SC: Randall Leal recorded his fourth assist of the season, all coming in the last six games, since Oct. 11. Leal has a goal and/or an assist in four consecutive games, with two goals and three assists in that span. … Walker Zimmerman recorded his first assist of the season; he has two goals and an assist over the past five games. Zimmerman has had one assist in each of the last four seasons.
 
FCD: Michael Barrios collected his fifth assist of the season, a second consecutive game with an assist. … Jimmy Maurer was credited with two saves in recording his sixth shutout of the season, his third in the last five games; the six shutouts are tied for fifth in MLS this season. … Andrés Ricuarte collected his second assist in MLS.
 
 
PORTLAND TIMBERS vs. COLORADO RAPIDS
Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #193)
Providence Park, Portland, Ore.
7 p.m. PT (TSN; KPDX; Altitude)
 
REFEREE: Joseph Dickerson. AR1 (bench): Jose da Silva; AR2 (opposite): TJ Zablocki; 4th: Luis Arroyo; VAR: Daniel Radford; AVAR: Joshua Patlak
MLS Career: 38 games; FC/gm: 26.6; Y/gm: 4.1; R: 7; pens: 12
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Timbers 10 wins, 32 goals … Rapids 7 wins, 30 goals … Ties 5
AT PORTLAND: Timbers 8 wins, 18 goals … Rapids 1 win, 6 goals … Ties 1
  • The Timbers won a second consecutive game and extended their undefeated streak to four, moving back atop the Western Conference standings by defeating Vancouver Whitecaps FC by the game’s only goal at Providence Park on Sunday evening. Yimmi Chará scored the Timbers goal, his fourth of the year.
  • The Rapids kept alive their hopes of gaining a spot in the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs, knocking off Seattle Sounders FC 3-1 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park on Sunday evening. Andre Shinyashiki scored for a second game in row to send the Rapids on their way.
  • The teams played to a pair of high-scoring draws a season ago. Rookie Andre Shinyashiki netted the equalizer deep in second-half stoppage time for his first goal in his professional debut, leaving the teams in a 3-3 draw in the season opener for both clubs, a match played in a blinding snowstorm March 2 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. The teams then shared the points in a 2-2 draw July 13 at Providence Park.
  • The Timbers have a five-game undefeated streak alive in the series, winning three consecutive matchups before the two draws last season. The last Rapids win came June 17, 2017, a 2-1 win in Commerce City, Colo.
  • The visiting team has won just three times in the all-time series, the Timbers winning twice in Commerce City since 2015. The Timbers have an nine-game home undefeated streak alive vs. Colorado; the Rapids’ lone win in Portland came June 11, 2011.
TIMBERS: Jorge Villafaña recorded his fifth assist of the season, equaling his MLS single-season career-high, set twice previously (2015, 2019). It was a second consecutive game with an assist for Villafaña; all five assists have come in his last nine games, since Sept. 13. … Steve Clark was credited with two saves in recording his fifth shutout of the season.
 
RAPIDS: Cole Bassett scored his fifth goal of the season, his first since netting goals in back-to-back games Sept. 19-23. … Keegan Rosenberry scored his first goal of the season; he has one goal in each of the last three seasons. … Jack Price recorded his fifth assist of the season, his third in the last four games. … Nicolas Benezet collected his third assist of the season, his first since gaining assists in back-to-back games July 17-22 during the MLS is Back Tournament.
 
 
LA GALAXY vs. SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC
Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #88)
Dignity Health Sports Park, Carson, Calif.
7:30 p.m. PT (TSN; SpecSN; JOEtv)
 
REFEREE: Silviu Petrescu. AR1 (bench): Ian Anderson; AR2 (opposite): Corey Rockwell; 4th: David Gantar; VAR: Alejandro Mariscal; AVAR: Fabio Tovar
MLS Career: 166 games; FC/gm: 27.7; Y/gm: 4.0; R: 25; pens: 40
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Galaxy 10 wins, 40 goals … Sounders FC 9 wins, 41 goals … Ties 10
AT GALAXY: Galaxy 6 wins, 23 goals … Sounders FC 4 wins, 19 goals … Ties 5
  • The Galaxy kept their postseason dreams alive in their first match with Dominic Kinnear back at the coaching helm, defeating Real Salt Lake 2-1 at Dignity Health Sports Park on Sunday evening. Cristian Pavón scored his 10th goal of the season, his third in the last two games, now sitting in a tie for third in the MLS Golden Boot standings.
  • Sounders FC saw their three-game undefeated run put to an end, falling 3-1 to the Colorado Rapids at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park on Sunday evening. Jordan Morris netted the Sounders goal, his ninth of the season.
  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Cristian Roldan scored a pair of goals and Jordan Morris had a goal and an assist as Sounders FC cruised to a 3-1 win Sept. 27 at Dignity Health Sports Park.
  • Sounders FC have come away with points on five of their last six trips to Carson, with three wins and two draws. The Seattle win in 2016 ended an 11-game winless streak there in league and MLS Cup play.
  • Sounders FC have scored nine goals in the last two home meetings with the Galaxy. Sounders FC claimed a 5-0 victory Aug. 18, 2018 at CenturyLink Field, equaling the club’s record for margin of victory over its 10 MLS seasons, and the Galaxy equaling the biggest margin of defeat in their history (set twice previously). It was their first against the Galaxy at home in league play since 2014 (though Sounders FC did win twice at home in the MLS Cup Playoffs over that timeframe).
GALAXY: Giancarlo González scored his first goal of the season, his third in three seasons in MLS. … Sebastian Lletget collected his fourth assist of the season, his second in as many games. … Emiliano Insua recorded his second MLS assist.
 
SOUNDERS FC: Cristian Roldan collected his fourth assist of the season, his last coming Oct. 7. … Kelvin Leerdam gained his third assist, his last coming Sept. 10.
 
 
SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES vs. LOS ANGELES FOOTBALL CLUB
Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #285)
Earthquakes Stadium, San Jose, Calif.
7:30 p.m. PT (NBCS-CA; YouTube TV / Estrella TV)
 
REFEREE: Timothy Ford. AR1 (bench): Jeremy Hanson; AR2 (opposite): Mike Rottersman; 4th: Michael Radchuk; VAR: Guido Gonzales Jr.; AVAR: TBD
MLS Career: 22 games; FC/gm: 23.0; Y/gm: 3.6; R: 4; pens: 3
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Earthquakes 1 win, 6 goals … LAFC 5 wins, 21 goals … Ties 0
AT SAN JOSE: Earthquakes 0 wins, 3 goals … LAFC 2 wins, 9 goals … Ties 0
  • The Earthquakes won their fifth game in the last eight matches, defeating Real Salt Lake 2-0 at Earthquakes Stadium on Wednesday evening.
  • Chris Wondolowski scored a pair of goals, now with six goals for the season. It was the 24th multiple-goal game of Wondolowski’s career, the second-most all-time (Landon Donovan, 32), and the 165th career goal of his league career, the most all-time.
  • LAFC won a second consecutive game and extended their undefeated streak to three contests, securing their place in the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs in the process with a 2-1 win against the Houston Dynamo at Banc of California Stadium.
  • Diego Rossi scored his 13th goal of the season, leading the MLS Golden Boot race now by two goals ahead of Gyasi Zardes of Columbus Crew SC.
  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season. Shea Salinas and Jackson Yueill scored goals in the final 10-plus minutes as the Quakes came back for a 2-1 win Sept. 27 at Banc of California Stadium. Earlier, Diego Rossi netted a pair of goals as LAFC rolled to a 5-1 on Sept. 2 at Banc of California Stadium.
  • The Quakes win in the last meeting was their first in the all-time series, in six meetings. LAFC had won the first five meetings between the clubs.
  • LAFC scored four goals or more in three consecutive matches with the Quakes, through the first meeting this year, the second team in MLS history to achieve that (also, LA Galaxy vs. Philadelphia Union, 2013-15). A year ago, LAFC cruised to a 5-0 win on March 30 in San Jose behind a Carlos Vela hat trick; Vela then netted two more goals as LAFC won 4-0 on Aug. 21 at Banc of California Stadium.
QUAKES: Shea Salinas recorded the first assist of the season, his first since last June 19. Salinas has had at least one assist now in 10 consecutive league campaigns. … JT Marcinkowski was not called upon to make a save in recording his fourth shutout of the season, all coming in the last six games.
 
LAFC: Eddie Segura scored his second goal of the season, his first coming on March 7. … Jesús Murillo collected his first career MLS assist. … Mohamed El-Munir recorded his first assist in his two seasons with LAFC, his last coming July 29, 2018 while with Orlando City.
 
 
NEW YORK RED BULLS vs. TORONTO FC
Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #287)
Red Bull Arena, Harrison, N.J.
3:30 p.m. ET (TSN; MSG)
 
REFEREE: Ted Unkel. AR1 (bench): Eric Weisbrod; AR2 (opposite): Ian McKay; 4th: Luis Arroyo; VAR: Daniel Radford; AVAR: Thomas Supple
MLS Career: 105 games; FC/gm: 23.6; Y/gm: 4.0; R: 33; pens: 54
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Red Bulls 16 wins, 61 goals … Toronto FC 9 wins, 37 goals … Ties 8
AT RED BULLS: Red Bulls 12 wins, 39 goals … Toronto FC 2 wins, 10 goals … Ties 2
  • The Red Bulls saw their five-game undefeated streak put to an end, falling 5-2 to New York City FC at Yankee Stadium on Sunday evening. Brian White scored his fourth goal of the season, his third in the last four games, and added an assist, his first of the season.
  • Toronto FC put an end to a two-game losing skid, coming back for a 2-1 win against Inter Miami CF at Rentschler Field on Sunday evening. Ayo Akinola and Alejandro Pozuelo each netted their ninth goals of the season to secure the victory.
  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Caden Clark made MLS history as the youngest player to score in his first two games, hitting for the 77th-minute equalizer to leave the teams in a 1-1 draw Oct. 14 at Rentschler Field.
  • The Red Bulls are 12-2-2 all-time in home matches vs. Toronto FC. When Toronto took a 2-0 win on March 6, 2016, it was its first win ever at Red Bull Arena. The Red Bulls were 5-0-1 all-time in Harrison before the TFC win; the triumph also snapped an eight-game home undefeated streak for the Red Bulls vs. TFC (7-0-1), which began Oct. 25, 2009.
RED BULLS: Cristian Casseres Jr. scored a goal, his second of the season, his first since March 7. Casseres also added his third assist of the year, all coming in the last six games; it was the second time in his MLS career he had a goal and an assist in the same game.
 
TFC: Michael Bradley recorded his first assist of the season, his last coming last Aug. 24 vs. Montréal. … Patrick Mullins collected his first assist of the season, his first in an MLS league game since July 28, 2018, while with Columbus Crew SC.
 
 
D.C. UNITED vs. MONTREAL IMPACT
Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #288)
Audi Field, Washington, D.C.
3:30 p.m. ET (TVA Sports; WJLA 24/7 News)
 
REFEREE: Rubiel Vazquez. AR1 (bench): Logan Brown; AR2 (opposite): Brian Poeschel; 4th: Thomas Snyder; VAR: Armando Villarreal; AVAR: Adam Wienckowski
MLS Career: 43 games; FC/gm: 22.5; Y/gm: 3.4; R: 7; pens: 8
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: D.C. United 7 wins, 27 goals … Impact 6 wins, 20 goals … Ties 7
AT D.C.: D.C. United 4 wins, 15 goals … Impact 1 win, 5 goals … Ties 4
  • D.C. United had their three-game winning run come to an end, falling 4-3 to the New England Revolution at Gillette Stadium on Sunday evening. Yamil Asad netted a second goal in five games, his third of the year, and Griffin Yow and Gelmin Rivas each added their second of the season.
  • The Impact remain in playoff position despite a third consecutive reversal, falling by the game’s only goal to Orlando City at Red Bull Arena on Sunday evening.
  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Saphir Taïder scored the game’s only goal in the 31st minute to give the Impact the win on July 21 during the group stage of the MLS is Back Tournament.
  • The goal was the first for the Impact in the series in 385 minutes, since Sept. 29, 2018. The Impact win ended a three-game United undefeated streak in the series.
UNITED: Edison Flores collected a pair of assists, his first two in MLS, in 12 appearances. … Moses Nyeman recorded his first career assist, in his 10th appearance. … Yordy Reyna notched his second assist of the season, his first assist with D.C. United since coming via trade from Vancouver.
 
IMPACT: The Impact have been blanked at the attacking end in back-to-back games for the first time this season. They were shut out just twice total in the first 20 games of the season.
 
 
PHILADELPHIA UNION vs. NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION
Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #289)
Subaru Park, Chester, Pa.
3:30 p.m. ET (ABC / ESPN Deportes; TSN)
 
REFEREE: Drew Fischer. AR1 (bench): Kathryn Nesbitt; AR2 (opposite): Brian Dunn; 4th: Adam Kilpatrick; VAR: Edvin Jurisevic; AVAR: Craig Lowry
MLS Career: 136 games; FC/gm: 25.1; Y/gm: 3.1; R: 19; pens: 40
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Union 16 wins, 51 goals … Revolution 6 wins, 33 goals … Ties 6
AT UNION: Union 10 wins, 31 goals … Revolution 3 wins, 16 goals … Ties 2
  • The Union had their three-game winning streak put to an end but still remain in pole position for the top seed overall for the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs, falling 2-1 to Columbus Crew SC at Mapfre Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
  • The Revolution put an end to a three-game winless skid, coming back for a 4-3 win against D.C. United at Gillette Stadium on Sunday evening. Teal Bunbury scored a pair of goals in the final quarter of the match to lead the Revolution to victory, the sixth two-goal game of his MLS career, now with eight goals for the season.
  • The teams are meeting for the fourth time this season in league play, and the Union have won the last two. Anthony Fontana scored a pair of goals over the final 17 minutes plus, giving the Union a 2-1 win Sept. 12 at Subaru Park, then Fontana netted the late game-winner for a Union 2-1 win Oct. 19 at Gillette Stadium. They also reached a goalless draw Aug. 20 in Foxborough.
  • The teams also met in the MLS is Back Tournament Knockout Stage, the Union claiming a 1-0 win in the round-of-16 match July 25. Sergio Santos scored the game’s lone goal; Andre Blake recorded five saves for the shutout.
  • The Union have won nine of the past 12 league meetings between the clubs, outscoring New England 26-5 in those victories, including wins in the last six meetings in Chester. The only Revolution win in the series since 2015 came on July 29, 2017, at Gillette Stadium, a 3-0 victory, before draws there in the last two meetings.
UNION: Goalkeeper Joe Bendik made his first start in an MLS game since July 17, 2019, while with the Columbus Crew, deputizing for the injured Andre Blake.
 
REVOLUTION: Adam Buksa netted his sixth goal of the season, his third in the last five games. … Carles Gil collected his second assist of the season, his first since July 9 in the opening group game of the MLS is Back Tournament. … Tajon Buchanan recorded his second assist of the season; he has a goal and an assist in the last four games.
 
 
ORLANDO CITY SC vs. NASHVILLE SC
Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #290)
Exploria Stadium, Orlando, Fla.
3:30 p.m. ET (FOX 35 Plus; MyTV30)
 
REFEREE: David Gantar. AR1 (bench): Adam Garner; AR2 (opposite): Benjamin Hall-Volpenhein; 4th: Elvis Osmanovic; VAR: Sorin Stoica; AVAR: Kyle Longville
MLS Career: 95 games; FC/gm: 23.8; Y/gm: 2.8; R: 36; pens: 22
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Orlando City 1 win, 4 goals … Nashville SC 0 wins, 2 goals … Ties 1
AT ORLANDO: Orlando City 1 win, 3 goals … Nashville SC 0 wins, 1 goal … Ties 0
  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season, the first two meetings in their histories coming in a home-and-home series over a week’s time. Daryl Dike scored a pair of goals and Chris Mueller added his fifth of the year as Orlando City took a 3-1 win at Exploria Stadium on Aug. 26; the teams then reached a 1-1 draw Sept. 2 at Nissan Stadium.
OCSC: Play Orlando City SC at Exploria Stadium at midweek.
 
NASHVILLE SC: Play FC Dallas at Nissan Stadium at midweek.
 
 
INTER MIAMI CF vs. FC CINCINNATI
Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #291)
Inter Miami CF Stadium, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
3:30 p.m. ET (MyTV33 / TUDN App; WSTR – Star 64)
 
REFEREE: Guido Gonzales Jr. AR1 (bench): Jose da Silva; AR2 (opposite): Jeffrey Swartzel; 4th: Marcos de Oliveira; VAR: Chris Penso; AVAR: Jozef Batko
MLS Career: 16 games; FC/gm: 26.6; Y/gm: 4.3; R: 6; pens: 6
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: First meeting.
  • Inter Miami CF went down to a second successive defeat, falling by a late goal in a 2-1 loss to Toronto FC at Rentschler Field on Sunday evening.
  • Blaise Matuidi scored the Inter Miami goal, his first in Major League Soccer.
  • FC Cincinnati were eliminated from playoff contention, dropping a 2-0 decision to Atlanta United at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Sunday evening.
  • The teams are meeting for the first time in their histories.
IMCF: Alvas Powell made his first appearance for Inter Miami since July 20, the final group game in the MLS is Back Tournament.
 
FCC: Kendall Waston made his first appearance in the FCC lineup since Oct. 7.
 
 
COLUMBUS CREW SC vs. ATLANTA UNITED
Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #292)
Mapfre Stadium, Columbus, Ohio
3:30 p.m. ET (STOhio; FS-SE)
 
REFEREE: Ismail Elfath. AR1 (bench): Corey Parker; AR2 (opposite): Cory Richardson; 4th: Sergii Demianchuk; VAR: Hilario Grajeda; AVAR: Brooke Mayo
MLS Career: 159 games; FC/gm: 25.7; Y/gm: 3.3; R: 44; pens: 50
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Crew SC 2 wins, 7 goals … ATLUTD 4 wins, 11 goals … Ties 0
AT COLUMBUS: Crew SC 1 win, 2 goals … ATLUTD 2 wins, 4 goals … Ties 0
  • Atlanta United remained in the hunt for a berth in the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs, putting an end to a six-game winless slide in a 2-0 win against FC Cincinnati at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Sunday evening. Marcelino Moreno netted his first goal in MLS for ATLUTD.
  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Youness Mohktar scored the game’s only goal as Crew SC took the win on July 21 during the group stage of the MLS is Back Tournament.
  • Crew SC have won the last three league meetings after Atlanta United won each of the first four, after winning both meetings a year ago, including a 2-0 win at Mapfre Stadium on March 30 in the last matchup in Columbus.
  • The teams met in the Knockout Round of the MLS Cup Playoffs in 2017, Crew SC advancing via a dramatic penalty kick shootout after the teams played to a scoreless draw over 120 minutes at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. They also met in the U.S. Open Cup fifth round a season ago, Atlanta United winning 3-2 in Columbus.
CREW SC: Play Orlando City SC at Exploria Stadium at midweek.
 
ATLUTD: Jürgen Damm collected his fourth assist in MLS, his second in the last four games. … Adam Jahn scored his third goal of the year, the last coming Oct. 3.
 
 
CHICAGO FIRE FC vs. NEW YORK CITY FC
Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #293)
Soldier Field, Chicago, Ill.
2:30 p.m. CT (ESPN+ / WGN-TV; YES)
 
REFEREE: Fotis Bazakos. AR1 (bench): Andrew Bigelow; AR2 (opposite): Peter Balciunas; 4th: Timothy Ford; VAR: Jose Carlos Rivero; AVAR: Eric Boria
MLS Career: 102 games; FC/gm: 25.5; Y/gm: 3.7; R: 20; pens: 36
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Fire 2 wins, 14 goals … NYCFC 6 wins, 22 goals … Ties 4
AT FIRE: Fire 2 wins, 9 goals … NYCFC 1 win, 8 goals … Ties 2
  • NYCFC recorded their biggest-ever victory in a Hudson Derby, defeating the New York Red Bulls 5-2 at Yankee Stadium on Sunday evening. The win was the third in a row for NYCFC.
  • Valentin Castellanos hit for a hat trick, the fourth in New York City FC club history, and also added an assist.
  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Fullback Anton Tinnerholm scored a goal and added an assist as NYCFC took a 3-1 win Aug. 29 at Red Bull Arena.
  • Fire FC have won twice in the all-time series in 12 meetings, the last coming June 30, 2018 in Bridgeview, which ended a six-game NYCFC undefeated streak in the series. It was the Fire’s first win since a 1-0 victory on April 24, 2015 in Bridgeview in the first-ever encounter between the teams.
  • The Fire have never won at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC have won the past five meetings as the home team, including this year’s win at Red Bull Arena, their first home wins in the series after the first two meetings ended in draws.
FIRE FC: Play Minnesota United FC at Allianz Field midweek.
 
NYCFC: Alexander Ring netted his fourth goal of the season, his last coming Sept. 12, equaling his single-season career-high set last season. … Gary Mackay-Steven scored his second career goal in MLS in his second season, the first coming last Aug. 31 at Vancouver. … Jesús Medina recorded his second assist of the season, both coming in the last four games. … Maximiliano Moralez collected his second assist of the season, the first coming Aug. 29.
 
 
HOUSTON DYNAMO vs. COLORADO RAPIDS
Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #294)
BBVA Stadium, Houston, Texas
5:30 p.m. CT (QuestTEXAS Ch. 55; Altitude)
 
REFEREE: Alex Chilowicz. AR1 (bench): Matthew Nelson; AR2 (opposite): Ian Anderson; 4th: Malik Badawi; VAR: Rosendo Mendoza; AVAR: Jonathan Johnson
MLS Career: 40 games; FC/gm: 24.6; Y/gm: 3.7; R: 6; pens: 13
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Dynamo 10 wins, 41 goals … Rapids 11 wins, 41 goals … Ties 10
AT HOUSTON: Dynamo 6 wins, 26 goals … Rapids 3 wins, 20 goals … Ties 5
  • The Dynamo had their run of consecutive draws put to an end, officially eliminated from contention for the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs in a 3-0 loss to FC Dallas at Toyota Stadium.
  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Lalas Abubakar hit for the equalizer for the Rapids six minutes into second-half stoppage time, leaving the teams in a 1-1 draw Sept. 9 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.
  • The teams reached a 2-2 draw in the last meeting at BBVA Stadium on Aug. 17, 2019; the Dynamo won the previous meeting between the clubs in Houston, a 2-0 win on June 9, 2018, which ended a two-game Rapids winning streak at BBVA Stadium.
  • The Dynamo took a 4-1 win last year on March 30 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, their first in Commerce City since 2008, ending an eight-game home undefeated streak for the Rapids in the series (5-0-3).
DYNAMO: Darwin Quintero heads into Decision Day with the chance of becoming the first player in Dynamo club history to lead the club in both goals and assists in the same season. Quintero has 7 goals and 10 assists.
 
RAPIDS: Play Portland Timbers at Providence Park at midweek.
 
 
MINNESOTA UNITED FC vs. FC DALLAS
Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #295)
Allianz Field, St. Paul, Minn.
5:30 p.m. CT (FS-North; FS-SW / FCDTV)
 
REFEREE: Robert Sibiga. AR1 (bench): Claudiu Badea; AR2 (opposite): Gjovalin Bori; 4th: Lukasz Szpala; VAR: Younes Marrakchi; AVAR: Fabio Tovar
MLS Career: 114 games; FC/gm: 21.8; Y/gm: 3.5; R: 24; pens: 32
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: MNUFC 2 wins, 8 goals … FC Dallas 4 wins, 11 goals … Ties 0
AT MINNESOTA: MNUFC 2 wins, 5 goals … FC Dallas 1 win, 2 goals … Ties 0
  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season, each winning once on their home ground. Kevin Molino scored a pair of second-half goals, leading MNUFC to a 3-2 win Sept. 9 at Allianz Field; on Aug. 29 at Toyota Stadium, Fafa Picault and Jesús Ferreira netted goals a minute apart early on, pacing FC Dallas to a 3-1 win.
  • The teams met twice a season ago. Mason Toye netted the game’s only goal in second-half stoppage time as MNUFC claimed the victory on July 13 at Allianz Field; Brandon Servania capped a wild match with a late brace as FC Dallas took a 5-3 win Aug. 10 at Toyota Stadium.
  • FC Dallas won both meetings between the clubs in 2018, without conceding a goal. FCD took a victory by the game’s only goal June 29 at TCF Bank Stadium, then won 2-0 at Toyota Stadium on Aug. 18. The teams split their two meetings in MNUFC’s inaugural season in MLS, each winning at home.
MNUFC: Play Minnesota United FC at Allianz Field midweek.
 
FCD: Play FC Dallas at Nissan Stadium at midweek.
 
 
REAL SALT LAKE vs. SPORTING KANSAS CITY
Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #296)
Rio Tinto Stadium, Sandy, Utah
4:30 p.m. MT (KMYU-12; FS-KC)
 
REFEREE: Kevin Stott. AR1 (bench): Frank Anderson; AR2 (opposite): Mike Rottersman; 4th: Silviu Petrescu; VAR: Allen Chapman; AVAR: TJ Zablocki
MLS Career: 359 games; FC/gm: 24.5; Y/gm: 3.1; R: 84; pens: 96
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Real 13 wins, 41 goals … Sporting 10 wins, 38 goals … Ties 8
AT SALT LAKE: Real 9 wins, 26 goals … Sporting 3 wins, 17 goals … Ties 3
  • Real saw their bid for a place in the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs come to an end, falling 2-1 to the LA Galaxy at Dignity Health Sports Park on Sunday evening. Douglas Martínez scored his second goal of the season, both coming in the last four games.
  • Sporting Kansas City had their match with Minnesota United FC at the weekend canceled. In their last match, Sporting assured their place in the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs, defeating FC Cincinnati by the game’s only goal at Nippert Stadium. Sporting return to the playoffs after last year having an eight-year streak of reaching the MLS postseason come to an end.
  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Johnny Russell scored in the first minute and Gerso Fernandes in the 86th, as Sporting took a 2-0 win on July 22 during the group stage of the MLS is Back Tournament.
  • The teams met twice a season ago and Real Salt Lake won both. Sam Johnson scored goals 14 minutes apart in the opening half-hour for both goals in the game as RSL took the victory June 29 at Rio Tinto Stadium. Corey Baird then scored a pair of goals as Real took a 2-1 win Aug. 10 at Children’s Mercy Park.
  • The teams of course also met in MLS Cup 2013, Sporting winning in a penalty shootout after a 1-1 draw through 120 minutes. They faced each other in the Western Conference Semifinals in 2018, SKC winning the series 5-3 on aggregate.
RSL: Maikel Chang recorded his sixth assist of the season, his second in the last five games.
 
SPORTING: Roger Espinoza scored his second goal of the season, his first coming on March 7. Espinoza has a goal and an assist in the last two games. … Alan Pulido collected his fifth assist of the season, his last coming in a 2-assist performance during the MLS is Back Tournament on July 22. Pulido has a goal and an assist in the last two games. … Gadi Kinda recorded his fourth assist of the season, his second in the last three games. Kinda has two goals and two assists over that span. … Tim Melia was credited with two saves, the first making his Sporting KC’s all-time save leader with 508, surpassing Tony Meola. Melia also saw a penalty missed for the 12th time in 26 total attempts against for his MLS career – but this was the first one he did not save (hitting the post).
 
 
LOS ANGELES FOOTBALL CLUB vs. PORTLAND TIMBERS
Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #297)
Banc of California Stadium, Los Angeles, Calif.
3:30 p.m. PT (FS1 / FOX Deportes)
 
REFEREE: Alan Kelly. AR1 (bench): Corey Rockwell; AR2 (opposite): TBD; 4th: Victor Rivas; VAR: Alejandro Mariscal; AVAR: Michael Kampmeinert
MLS Career:
126 games; FC/gm: 24.1; Y/gm: 3.2; R: 17; pens: 28
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: LAFC 3 wins, 15 goals … Timbers 1 win, 10 goals … Ties 3
AT BANC OF CALIFORNIA STADIUM: LAFC 2 wins, 8 goals … Timbers 0 wins, 3 goals … Ties 1
  • The teams are meeting for the fourth time this season. In the last meeting, LAFC’s Christian Torres became the fifth-youngest player to score in MLS history, at 16 years, 186 days, leaving the teams in a 1-1 draw Oct. 18 at Providence Park. In the previous meetings, Bradley Wright-Phillips and Mark-Anthony Kaye each had a goal and an assist as LAFC took a 4-2 win Sept. 13 at Banc of California Stadium; the teams reached a 2-2 draw in the final group game on July 23 for both teams in the MLS is Back Tournament.
  • The teams met twice a season ago and LAFC won both in a pair of goalfests. Carlos Vela netted one goal and set up two others as LAFC rolled to a 4-1 win, March 10 at Banc of California Stadium; Vela, Diego Rossi and Brian Fernández then all found the back of the net in a 3-2 LAFC win June 1 at Providence Park.
  • The teams met twice in league play in LAFC’s inaugural season. The Timbers claimed a 2-1 win May 19 at Providence Park; the teams also reached a goalless draw July 15 at Banc of California Stadium. The teams have also met in the U.S. Open Cup each season, LAFC winning a semifinal matchup 3-2 in Los Angeles in 2018, but the Timbers claiming a 1-0 in the quarterfinals a year ago in southern California.
LAFC: Play San Jose Earthquakes at Earthquakes Stadium at midweek.
 
RAPIDS: Play Portland Timbers at Providence Park at midweek.
 
 
SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC vs. SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES
Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #298)
CenturyLink Field, Seattle, Wash.
3:30 p.m. PT (JOEtv / Prime Video; NBCS-CA)
 
REFEREE: Jair Marrufo. AR1 (bench): Jason White; AR2 (opposite): Jeff Hosking; 4th: Ramy Touchan; VAR: Jon Freemon; AVAR: Jeff Muschik
MLS Career: 272 games; FC/gm: 23.0; Y/gm: 2.8; R: 43; pens: 86
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Sounders FC 12 wins, 40 goals … Earthquakes 10 wins, 30 goals … Ties 8
AT SEATTLE: Sounders FC 9 wins, 31 goals … Earthquakes 5 wins, 16 goals … Ties 2
  • The teams are meeting for the fourth time this season. In the last meeting on Oct. 18, the teams reached a goalless draw at Earthquakes Stadium. On Sept. 10 at CenturyLink Field, Sounders FC became the ninth team in MLS history to score at least seven goals in a game, rolling to a 7-1 win. The Sounders scored five goals in the opening 33 minutes of the game, then the fastest five goals from the start of a match in MLS history, tying the record for most goals in the first half in league annals. The teams also reached a goalless draw in the opening match for both teams at the MLS is Back Tournament on July 10.
  • Sounders FC have a 12-game undefeated streak alive in the overall series. A 2-2 draw in the first meeting last year on April 24 ended a three-game Sounders FC winning streak at CenturyLink Field. Sounders FC have come away with points on each of their six visits to San Jose (four draws and two victories).
SOUNDERS FC: Play LA Galaxy at Dignity Health Sports Park at midweek.
 
QUAKES: Play Los Angeles Football Club at Earthquakes Stadium at midweek
 
 
VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC vs. LA GALAXY
Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 (Week 23, MLS Game #299)
Providence Park, Portland, Ore.
3:30 p.m. PT (TSN; SpecSN)
 
REFEREE: Joseph Dickerson. AR1 (bench): Jeremy Hanson; AR2 (opposite): Jeremy Kieso; 4th: Ismir Pekmic; VAR: Jorge Gonzalez; AVAR: Joshua Patlak
MLS Career: 38 games; FC/gm: 26.6; Y/gm: 4.1; R: 7; pens: 12
 
LEAGUE HEAD-TO-HEAD: Whitecaps FC 7 wins, 21 goals … Galaxy 12 wins, 36 goals … Ties 5
VANCOUVER HOME GAME: Whitecaps FC 3 wins, 13 goals … Galaxy 3 wins, 14 goals … Ties 4
  • Whitecaps FC weren’t able to make it a fourth win from five games, falling by the game’s lone goal to the Portland Timbers at Providence Park on Sunday evening.
  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season, each winning once by the game’s only goal. In the last meeting, Kai Koreniuk scored in the 90th minute, giving the Galaxy the win Oct. 18 at Dignity Health Sports Park. On March 7 in Carson, Tosaint Ricketts scored to give Whitecaps FC the victory.
  • The 2-0 win on April 5 of last year was the Galaxy’s first at BC Place since Aug. 24, 2013, ending a five-game Whitecaps FC undefeated streak on their home ground in the series. Whitecaps FC have won three of the last five meetings in Carson.
  • There has been a shutout in 14 of the past 17 meetings between the teams, dating back to 2013, including three scoreless draws.
WHITECAPS FC: Rookie Ryan Raposo made his second start of the season, his first coming July 23 in the final group game of the MLS is Back Tournament.
 
GALAXY: Play Seattle Sounders FC at Dignity Health Sports Park at midweek.
 
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