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CONCACAF Champions League

Take Me Out to the Ballgame – Week 29

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After week 29 the numbers look like this…

5 year comparison
WK 29205 GPYTD
Avg+/-GPAvg+/-Avg+/-GP
 2005 18,417 6 15,959 15,108 192
 2006 20,277 10.10% 6 16,235 1.73% 15,402 1.94% 192
 2007 20,575 1.47% 7 16,587 2.17% 16,812 9.16% 195
 2008 16,234 -21.10% 7 16,416 -1.03% 16,894 0.49% 195
 2009 22,165 36.53% 7 15,878 -3.28% 15,868 -6.07% 205
YTD – 205 Games
AverageMedian%<10K%>20k
 2005   15,959  14,450 16.20% 22.83%
 2006   16,235  14,806 12.67% 24.49%
 2007   16,587  15,188 9.75% 27.25%
 2008   16,416  15,038 11.22% 24.88%
 2009   15,878  14,534 15.61% 19.51%

Here are the attendance comparisons to 2008’s equal number of home games(205):

MLS Attendance – Equal # of Home Games
20082009
AttCapAttAtt +/-GPCapCap
 Seattle 0 0 30,739 NA 14 94.87% 32,400
 Toronto 20,110 91.50% 20,324 1.07% 13 92.47% 21,978
 LA Galaxy 25,938 96.07% 19,946 -23.10%  14 73.87% 27,000
 Real Salt Lake 15,773 77.50% 16,208 2.76% 13 76.04% 19,340
 Houston 15,980 71.02% 16,160 1.13% 14 71.82% 22,500
 D.C. United 20,061 89.16% 16,075 -19.87%  14 71.44% 22,500
 ChivasUSA 15,029 55.66% 15,551 3.48% 12 57.60% 27,000
 Chicago 17,303 86.51% 14,485 -16.28%  14 72.43% 20,000
 San Jose 13,941 89.35% 14,478 3.86% 14 79.32% 10,300
 Columbus Crew 14,267 71.34% 14,279 0.08% 14 71.39% 20,000
 NE Revolution 17,542 77.97% 13,432 -23.43%  13 59.70% 22,500
 Colorado Rapids 13,659 75.52% 12,331 -9.72%  15 68.18% 18,086
 FC Dallas 12,946 61.09% 12,241 -5.45%  14 52.48% 21,193
 N.Y./N.J. Red Bulls 15,741 62.49% 11,861 -24.65%  14 47.09% 25,189
 KC Wizards 10,843 104.41% 10,022 -7.57%  13 96.50% 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 29 games drew 22,165. No surprise as the Dallas’ doubleheader, with Mexico playing a friendly, drew 51,012 to the Cotton Bowl. This will likely prevent FCD from finishing the season with an average attendance under 10,000. I don’t have a problem with this type of scheduling. It is part of the solution for mid-week matches as MLS starts to honor FIFA dates more in the future. More on this in a few days. DCU had it’s largest crowd of the year, pulling in over 24,000. Columbus drew right on average. Colorado closed out its regular season home schedule with the 3rd largest crowd of the season and San Jose sold out Buck Shaw. Over 16,800 came out to Robertson for the Dynamo.


Week 29 Games
 
FC Dallas13rd Degree – Buzz Carrick
New England0Revolution Soccer
 
Los Angeles1LA – Official Blog
Chicago0Chicago Fire Confidential
 
DC United0DCU – Steve Goff – Soccer Insider
Chivas USA2Chivas USA – MLSNet
 
Columbus0Columbus Dispatch – Crew XTra
Seattle1Seattle Times
 
Colorado1Undercurrent
New England1Revolution Soccer
 
San Jose1San Jose Center Line Soccer
RBNY0Red Bulls Reader
 
Houston1Soccer y Fútbol – Barnard Fallas
Kansas City1Kansas City – Hillcrest Road

So How Are They Doing?

Points after 205 Games
PtsGP PPGGDH/A
 Columbus 46 27 1.70 11 1/2
 Los Angeles 44 28 1.57 3 1/1
 Houston 44 28 1.57 9 1/1
 Seattle 41 28 1.46 7 1/1
 Chicago 41 28 1.46 4 1/1
 Chivas USA 41 26 1.58 3 3/1
 Colorado 40 28 1.43 8 0/2
 New England 38 27 1.41 -4 2/1
 DC United 36 28 1.29 -2 1/1
 Toronto FC 35 27 1.30 -5 2/1
 Real Salt Lake 34 27 1.26 4 2/1
 Dallas 33 27 1.22 2 1/2
 Kansas City 32 27 1.19 -6 2/1
 San Jose 28 26 1.08 -11 1/3
 NY Red Bull 18 28 0.64 -23 1/1

RBNY remain the only mathematically eliminated club. LA and Houston joined Columbus, clinching playoff berths.

A wounded New England team dropped game-in-hand points in Dallas. The Revs were just what FCD needed to keep their improbable run going. New England has been at the bottom of the table in shots attempted all season. Losing Ralston(season ending knee injury) as well as Twellman seriously reduced the risk that the porous Dallas defense would be severely tested. On top of that for New England, they lost Wells Thompson for their 2nd game of the week in Colorado, which they ended up drawing. The Revs still control their own destiny but now their lead over playoff chasers looks tenuous. Taking only 1 point from 6 this week, with Columbus twice and Chicago upcoming in its last three will make a securing playoff berth a difficult task.

Once again, Los Angeles did what a playoff team needs to do, unless you’re Chicago, and that is to win at home. For the Fire, the loss means any slim hope they might have had for either the conference championship or the Supporters’ Shield are now just mathematical possibilities.
Seattle, which last week seemed the most vulnerable, came up with a huge unexpected win at Columbus, ending the Crew’s 24 match home undefeated run(against MLS teams). With a game in hand over Houston and LA though, Columbus still has the Supporters’ Shield within its grasp. Chivas USA, who a few weeks ago along with New England had the advantage of games in hand, has made the most of it(unlike the Revs) and have a legitimate chance to win the west. They are 3 points behind with 2 games in hand.

Playoff Contenders Remaining SchedulePoints
Pts Home Away
 Chivas USA 41 KC SJ CHI HOU 26 15
 Seattle 41 KC FCD 24 17
 Colorado 40 FCD RSL 29 11
 New England 38 CLB CHI CLB 24 14
 DC United 36 CLB KC 23 13
 Toronto FC 35 SJ RSL NY 24 11
 Real Salt Lake 34 NY TFC COL 26 8
 Dallas 33 SJ COL SEA 25 8
 Kansas City 32 CHV SEA DCU 16 16
shaded = away game

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 no lost at home in 7(6 wins).
  • RBNY is winless on the road.
  • TFC has not lost home in 5 straight.
  • Colorado and TFC have not won on the road in 7 straight.
  • RSL is unbeaten in 8 home games.
  • Seattle is scoreless in last 4 home games.
  • Chicago is winless in 5(3 draws).

MLS Throw Ins

Rapids fans might be wondering if they will soon see Arsenal(EPL) players on loan in Colorado to keep sharp or recover from injury in the future as Don Garber backs Rapids owner Stan Kroenke’s possible buyout of Arsenal.

Goal scoring got off to a slow start this season, but had almost caught up to last year’s numbers. However as the playoffs beckon and sphincters tighten, the offenses have been offensive. After 205 games, nearly 60 fewer goals(-10.2%) have been scored. This week’s seven games saw 5 shutouts and 2 1-1 draws. No team scored more than 2 goals this week.


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
 Awdlptsdiff
 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

Columbus’ upcoming schedule is: Oct 11 MLS, Oct 17 MLS
DC United’s upcoming schedule is: Oct 17 MLS
Houston’s upcoming schedule is: Oct 18 MLS

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4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. Berlin

    October 6, 2009 at 12:03 am

    Not good to see the country’s largest markets with double digit declines. LA and Chicago can claim the end of the DP honeymoon, and NE/DC/NY can point to sub par [relatively] seasons, but are those really legit excuses for such a drop off?

  2. Vnice

    October 5, 2009 at 10:25 pm

    My dream is to see every team in MLS that has the capacity to average over 17 thousand in attendance. As a Buffalo native, I have a soft spot for Columbus, and I hate seeing their attendance well below their championship status. I want Columbus to not only do well, but stay put, and I hope marketing there can get better so more people come out to the games.

    Can someone please apply pressure to the Revolution front office to start operating their stadium the way Seattle does theirs? Tarps, disappearing gridiron lines, etc. Why is this such a problem?

  3. Nordecke Luchador

    October 5, 2009 at 10:20 pm

    The recession has hurt all commercial sports, but MLS continues to roll. Next year’s World Cup will bring another boost just as we saw in 2006.

  4. Rex

    October 5, 2009 at 3:54 pm

    Good to seen Houston equal their attendance numbers from last year. Still have the Beckham game. Could be his first trip to Houston.

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