As the city finishes tidying up from the big road race this past weekend, Who To Boo is ready to dig deep, make that last left turn and head for the finish. And as any marathoner knows, you don't want to start out too fast because you'll lose your legs and fade at the finish. Several MLS teams seem to have hit the wall this month. The Fire sent Dallas to the physio last weekend. Montreal's glycogen stores seem to have run out. And even the self-congratulatory Seattle Sounders forgot to carbo-load in October and saw their firm hold on the Cascadia Cup slip away.
Thanks to a superior number of goals scored, Chicago is now situated in the top half of the Eastern Conference table. Their playoff fate is now in their hands. So, let's hit that final drink station and get it done.
Montreal @ Los Angeles, (10/16, 9:30pm), MLS Live/DirectKick
Who to boo: Montreal
It wasn't that long ago that L'Impact was thinking they might be the first Canadian team to challenge for the Supporter's Shield. Now, they head to the StubHub Center to square off against a Galaxy team that is both in great form and at risk of missing the post-season. Oh, and Montreal will be missing both starting center backs due to suspension. Bonne chance, l'Impact! A Montreal loss here and their game-in-hand is a wash as they prepare for ...
Philadelphia @ Montreal, (10/19, 1:00pm), MLS Live/DirectKick
Who to boo: Philadelphia
If Montreal is able to right its ship in southern California, we certainly want them to win this match. But, even if they lose, it seems that an Impact win is better for the Fire than a draw because regardless, they will still be even with the Fire at 46 points but they will have 4 more goals than the Men in Red. Only the Quakes have been more in form than Philly over the last month. But, they have benefitted from some last-minute heroics in their last two games. A goose egg for the Phunions would be a beautiful sight to see.
Columbus @ New England, (10/19, 6:30pm), MLS Live/DirectKick
Who to boo: New England
Columbus has the potential to get to 47 points, so they're not officially eliminated - but a playoff berth is very unlikely. Over the next two weeks, they have a pair of chances to drag the Revs down with them. Next weekend may be just for pride - so best that they get the result that Chicago (and Philadelphia and Montreal) are hoping for on the plastic pitch in Foxboro.
Toronto @ Chicago, (10/19, 7:30pm), My50
Who to boo: Toronto
There may still be a segment of Fire faithful that secretly hope that the team is eliminated to put them out of their misery and, potentially, prompt changes in team management. But two road victories, albeit over the skim milk of the crop in MLS, have renewed hope that this season may have something special to offer. A big crowd is expected at Toyota Park this Saturday and, depending on other results, Chicago can jump up to third place in the East and position themselves for a healthy run in November. Next week they travel to Red Bull Arena, where visitors have won twice in 16 starts this year. So, three points in this one will save everyone's fingernails a good gnawing.
NY @ Houston, (10/20, 3:00pm), UniMas
Who to boo: Houston and NY discipline
With a trip to RFK waiting for them next week, Houston looks like pretty sure bets for the post season. But, a hiccup for the Dynamo in their final home match could give push them into the playoff game and give the Fire an extra week to prepare for their first playoff game. Johnny Steele and Jamison Olave are one yellow card away from missing Fan Appreciation Day.