Sunday, December 5, 2021

MLS: Red Bulls and Atlanta miss chance to clinch play-off spots, Timbers secure berth

SoccerNews in MLS 4 Nov 2021

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New York Red Bulls and Atlanta United missed the chance to secure their places in the MLS Cup play-offs after the teams played out a goalless on Wednesday.

A win for either side would have sealed their play-off fate, but the Red Bulls and Atlanta must wait until Sunday’s Decision Day following the midweek stalemate.

Red Bulls forward Patryk Klimala came closest for either side, with his 48th-minute effort hitting the crossbar from Caden Clark’s cross.

Four minutes later, Atlanta goalkeeper Brad Guzan denied Klimala from a one-on-one opportunity, while Clark had a goal disallowed for offside nine minutes into the second half.

In the Eastern Conference, the seventh-placed Red Bulls go to third-placed Nashville on Sunday, while Atlanta – fifth in the standings – visit bottom club FC Cincinnati.

Portland Timbers, fourth in the Western Conference, booked their play-off spot with a 3-1 win away to Real Salt Lake, sparked by Sebastian Blanco’s brace. 

RSL remain two points behind LA Galaxy in the final Western Conference play-off position and face Sporting Kansas City on Sunday.

Montreal stayed in the hunt courtesy of a 2-0 home win over Houston Dynamo, moving them up to eighth in the east, within one point of the Red Bulls.

Struggling Austin dented Sporting KC’s hopes of claiming top spot in the west with a 3-1 triumph.

Sporting KC are second, a point behind Seattle Sounders heading into the final round of the regular season.

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