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Take Me Out to the Ballgame – Week 31

soccer balls Take Me Out to the Ballgame   Week 31

After week 31 the numbers look like this…

  5 year comparison
  WK 31 217 GP YTD
  Avg +/- GP Avg +/- Avg +/- GP
 2005   18,417     6   15,957     15,108     192 
 2006   20,277   10.10%   6   16,157   1.25%   15,402   1.94%   192 
 2007   20,575   1.47%   7   16,359   1.25%   16,812   9.16%   195 
 2008   17,338   -15.73%   7   16,173   -1.14%   16,928   0.69%   210 
 2009   17,267   -0.41%   8   15,894   -1.72%   15,884   -6.16%   217 

YTD – 217 Games
  Average Median %<10K %>20k
 2005    15,957     14,525    15.90%   22.17% 
 2006    16,157     14,780    13.27%   23.22% 
 2007    16,359     15,037    11.58%   24.60% 
 2008    16,173     14,994    13.11%   22.25% 
 2009    15,894     14,611    15.21%   19.82% 


Here are the attendance comparisons to 2008′s equal number of home games(217):

MLS Attendance – Equal # of Home Games
  2008 2009  
  Att Cap Att Att +/- GP Cap Cap
 Seattle  0   0.00%   30,739   NA  14   94.87%   32,400 
 Toronto  20,110   91.50%   20,344   1.17%   15   92.57%   21,978 
 LA Galaxy  25,938   96.07%   19,946   -23.10%   14   73.87%   27,000 
 Houston  16,939   75.28%   17,047   0.64%   15   75.77%   22,500 
 Real Salt Lake  16,076   79.27%   16,211   0.84%   14   76.56%   19,340 
 D.C. United  19,835   88.16%   16,088   -18.89%   15   71.50%   22,500 
 ChivasUSA  14,897   55.17%   15,132   1.58%   14   56.05%   27,000 
 Chicago  17,303   86.51%   14,485   -16.28%   14   72.43%   20,000 
 Columbus Crew  14,267   71.34%   14,279   0.08%   14   71.39%   20,000 
 San Jose  13,713   89.93%   14,114   2.93%   15   79.64%   10,300 
 NE Revolution  17,580   78.14%   13,732   -21.89%   15   61.03%   22,500 
 FC Dallas  13,024   61.45%   12,441   -4.48%   15   53.67%   21,193 
 Colorado Rapids  13,659   75.52%   12,331   -9.72%   15   68.18%   18,086 
 N.Y./N.J. Red Bulls  15,741   62.49%   11,861   -24.65%   14   47.09%   25,189 
 KC Wizards  10,746   103.48%   10,030   -6.67%   14   96.58%   10,385 


My disclaimer about the capacity calculations – Additional disclaimer note: I factored in the Dallas game at the Cotton Bowl as 100% capacity of 51,012.

Observations

Week 31 games drew 17,267. The midweek affair at Rio Tinto against RBNY drew a healthy 16,247. Toronto had its normal 20,000+ in the regular season finale at BMO. And even the Revs finally drew a nice crowd with over 18,000 showing up. More than 16,200 braved a steady cold rain in DC. They must have had giveaways for anything not nailed down as Dallas had its first 15,000 gate since opening day, not counting last week when Mexico played a friendly as part of a doubleheader. The Wizards nearly sold out CAB(they should be selling out everygame). Don’t know if it’s the competition, but Chivas USA didn’t pull in 13,000 for KC(this week) or SJ(last week). Too bad, they were having a very good season at the gate. They’ll still finish OK, but were up over 11% earlier in the year. Closing out the week was the showcase match, Western Conference champion contenders Los Angeles visiting Houston. Does anything think David Beckham doesn’t make a difference? Over 29,400 showed up at Robertson Stadium, 10,000 more than the next highest gate this season.


Week 31 Games
 
Real Salt Lake 2 RSL – Behind the Shield
RBNY 0 Red Bulls Reader
 
Toronto 1 TFC Connected
Real Salt Lake 0 RSL – Behind the Shield
 
New England 0 Revolution Soccer
Chicago 0 Chicago Fire Confidential
 
DC United 1 DCU – Steve Goff – Soccer Insider
Columbus 0 Columbus Dispatch – Crew XTra
 
FC Dallas 2 3rd Degree – Buzz Carrick
Colorado 1 Undercurrent
 
Kansas City 2 Kansas City – Hillcrest Road
Seattle 3 Seattle Times
 
Chivas USA 2 Chivas USA – MLSNet
San Jose 2 San Jose Center Line Soccer
 
Houston 0 Soccer y Fútbol – Barnard Fallas
Los Angeles 0 LA – Official Blog




So How Are They Doing?

Points after 217 Games
  Pts GP  PPG GD H/A
 Columbus  49   29   1.69   11   1/0 
 Chivas USA  45   28   1.61   5   1/1 
 Houston  45   29   1.55   9   0/1 
 Los Angeles  45   29   1.55   3   1/0 
 Seattle  44   29   1.52   8   1/0 
 Chicago  42   29   1.45   4   1/0 
 Colorado  40   29   1.38   7   0/1 
 Toronto FC  39   29   1.34   -4   0/1 
 DC United  39   29   1.34   -1   0/1 
 Dallas  39   29   1.34   4   0/1 
 New England  39   29   1.34   -5   0/1 
 Real Salt Lake  37   29   1.28   5   1/0 
 Kansas City  32   29   1.10   -9   1/0 
 San Jose  30   29   1.03   -12   0/1 
 NY Red Bull  18   29   0.62   -25   1/0 


MLS Playoffs – In: Los Angeles, Houston, Columbus, Seattle – Out: RBNY, San Jose, Kansas City

Every game had playoff implications, from the wannabees trying to get in to the qualified jockeying for conference championships and home field advantage.

RSL who need to win out, eked out a win over RBNY in a drab midweek affair. It was terrific that Andy Williams, who has been through so much this season, scored the game winner. Unfortunately, their terrible road form continued as they lost at Toronto. Only RBNY, who went winless on the road, has lost more away games than RSL. The 0-0 draw between the Fire and the Revs showed two teams that have struggled down the stretch. Chicago, who started the season unbeaten in 11 matches, has only managed 4 points in 6 games., while New England has taken only 2 points in 4 matches.

The mediocre play(parity?) has even struck Columbus who are a drab 3-1-3(w-d-l) in their last seven and are leaving some drama alive in the chase for the Supporters’ Shield. Chivas USA missed a great opportunity to put itself in the driver’s seat for the Supporters’ Shield, but came up short with a draw vs Kansas City. With the Dynamo/Galaxy draw, Chivas is now the only club that can catch Columbus, but they need Columbus to draw or lose in their last game and the Goats must win its final 2 vs Chicago and Houston, a tall order.

If you are wondering why I’ve listed Toronto in 8th playoff spot, it’s because they hold the tiebreaker over the other three clubs with 39 points, having a better win/loss record against FCD, DCU and the Revs.

Playoff Contenders Remaining Schedule Points
  Pts    Home  Away
 Chicago  42   CHV  18   24 
 Colorado  40   RSL  29   11 
 Toronto FC  39   NY  28   11 
 Dallas  39   SEA  28   11 
 DC United  39   KC  26   13 
 New England  39   CLB  25   14 
 Real Salt Lake  37   COL  29   8 
shaded = away game

Playoff Contenders Head to Head
  W-D-L CHI COL TFC FCD DCU NE RSL
 Chicago  42  X 2-0-0 1-1-0 1-0-1 0-1-2 0-2-0 1-1-0
 Colorado  40  0-0-2 X 1-0-1 1-1-1 1-0-1 0-2-0 1-1-0
 Toronto FC  39  0-1-1 1-0-1 X 0-1-1 1-1-0 1-1-0 1-0-1
 Dallas  39  1-0-1 1-1-1 1-1-0 X 0-1-1 1-0-1 1-0-1
 DC United  39  2-1-0 1-0-1 0-1-1 1-1-0 X 0-1-1 0-1-1
 New England  39  0-2-0 0-2-0 0-1-1 1-0-1 1-1-0 X 1-0-1
 Real Salt Lake  37  0-1-1 0-1-1 1-0-1 1-0-1 1-1-0 1-0-1 X


Top 3 tiebreakers.(MLS 2009 Rules of Competition)

    1. The highest position shall be awarded to the team with the better win/loss record in current regular season games against all other teams equal in points. (head-to-head competition)
    2. If the teams are still equal in the standings, the highest position shall be awarded to the team with the greater goal difference against all other teams during the regular season. (goal differential)
    3. If the teams are still equal in the standings, the highest position shall be awarded to the team scoring the greatest number of total goals against all other teams during the regular season. (total goals)

Streaking

  • FC Dallas has not lost at home in 8(7 wins).
  • RBNY finished winless on the road(27 total).
  • TFC has not lost home in 7 straight.
  • TFC have not won on the road in 7 straight.
  • Houston have not won on the road in 6 straight.
  • Colorado have not won on the road in 8 straight.
  • RSL is unbeaten in 9 home games.
  • Seattle is scoreless in last 4 home games.
  • Chicago is winless in 6(4 draws).


MLS Throw Ins

Chivas USA is the only team with even a chance of winning 50% of its games. Surprised? Don’t be, last year only Columbus won more than half of its matches. in ’07 three teams reached the 50% win mark, in ’06 one, and three made it in ’05.




MLS In CONCACAF Champions League

In Group A, Houston lost at home to Pachuca. They need help in the last match to move on. Árabe Unido will have to lose on its visit to Pachuca while Houston must win at Metapan. Houston holds the tiebreaker over Árabe Unido. DC United stayed strong in Group B this week, with a win over San Juan Jabloteh(T&T). They also hold the tiebreaker advantage over Marathón. Columbus lost to group leaders Cruz Azul, ending its long undefeated(all competitions) home streak. For DCU and Columbus, advancement is in their own control, win and they’re in. Houston must win and Árabe Unido must lose in order to advance.

2.3 CONCACAF Tie-Breaker Procedures

In the event two teams are tied on aggregate goals scored at the end of Regulation time in the 2nd Leg (Preliminary Round or Championship Stage) or on points (Group Stage) the following tie-breaker criteria shall be applied, in order, to determine the winning team or ranking of teams.

Phase 2: Group Stage


  • Greater number of points earned in matches between the teams concerned
  • Greater goal difference in matches between the teams concerned
  • Greater number of goals scored away from home in matches between the teams concerned

CONCACAF Champions League
 A w d l pts diff
 Pachuca(MEX)  4   0   1   12   10 
 Arabe Unido(PAN)  3   1   1   10   5 
 Houston(USA)  2   1   2   7   2 
 Isidro Metapan(SLV)  0   0   5   0   -17 
 B          
 Toluca(MEX)  4   0   1   12   11 
 DC United(USA)  3   0   2   9   4 
 CD Marathon(HON)  3   0   2   9   -4 
 San Juan Jabloteh(T&T)  0   0   5   0   -11 
 C          
 Cruz Azul(MEX)  4   1   0   13   11 
 Columbus(USA)  2   1   2   7   -4 
 Saprissa(CRC)  1   2   2   5   -1 
 Puerto Rico(CFU)  0   2   3   2   -6 
 D          
 Pumas UNAM(MEX)  4   1   0   13   10 
 Comunicaciones(GUA)  2   0   3   6   -3 
 Real Espana(HON)  2   0   3   6   -7 
 W Connection(T&T)  1   1   3   4   0 

CONCACAF Champions League
Oct 21-22
Group Game 6
Columbus plays Oct 20
DCU plays Oct 20
Houston plays Oct 21