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Salt Lake, LA clinch playoffs; Seattle not yet

Post by Don Ruiz / The News Tribune on Sep. 22, 2012 at 11:02 pm with No Comments »
September 22, 2012 11:02 pm

Here’s an MLS news release on the league’s playoff picture, where three spots have been clinched and another team will be playing for its playoff life on Sunday:

Tonight Real Salt Lake and reigning MLS Cup Champion LA Galaxy secured spots in the 2012 MLS Cup Playoffs by defeating the Portland Timbers 2-1 and Toronto FC 4-2, respectively. With three spots already taken – the San Jose Earthquakes clinched on Sept. 8 – just two open playoff spots remain in the Western Conference.

Tomorrow, Philadelphia Union will be playing for their chance to remain in contention for a spot in the Eastern Conference. If the Union tie or lose to the Houston Dynamo tomorrow (MLS Direct Kick, 4:00 p.m. ET), they will become the third Eastern Conference team eliminated from playoff contention, joining the New England Revolution and Toronto FC.

ABOUT THE 2012 MLS CUP PLAYOFFS
The top five teams in points from each conference at the end of the regular season (10 total) will qualify for the 2012 MLS Cup Playoffs.

The fourth and fifth place teams in each conference will play a single knockout game, the winner of which will advance to the Conference Semifinals and face the first place team in the conference.

The four Conference Semifinals will be decided by two-game aggregate series, with the lower seed hosting the first leg and the higher seed hosting the second leg. If the aggregate score is tied after 180 minutes of play, two 15-minute extra time periods will be played in their entirety, followed by penalty kicks, if necessary.

The two Conference Championships will be decided by a two-game aggregate series, with the lower seed hosting the first leg and the higher seed hosting the second leg. If the aggregate score is tied after 180 minutes of play, two 15-minute extra time periods will be played in their entirety, followed by penalty kicks, if necessary.

MLS Cup will be a single championship match hosted by the higher seed. If the score is tied after 90 minutes of play, two 15-minute extra time periods will be played in their entirety, followed by penalty kicks, if necessary.

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