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John Todd

Rooting Interests: What Quakes fans should hope for

Come on you Revs, Crew and Goats!

It's that time of the year when the enemy of your enemy is your friend. That's why San Jose fans should - at least temporarily - align themselves with New England, Columbus and Chivas USA for the sake of MLS Cup Playoff security.

Every game this weekend has post-season implications (MLS PLAYOFF STANDINGS). The Quakes 1-0 win over Philadelphia on Wednesday was a big boost to the Northern California side's playoff aspirations, but the race is anything but over.

Six games, six possible scenarios. Here's a glance at San Jose's rooting interests:

Real Salt Lake vs. Chicago Fire (Sat., 1 p.m. PT / Telefutura)
This one could go either way. The Quakes are eight points behind RSL - with one game in hand - and 10 points in front of Chicago - with one more game played. If you're an ambitious, 3-4-3 formation, the best defense is a quality offense type of person, you're hoping for a Chicago Fire win to bring that No. 2 seed closer to the Silicon Valley. If you're more inclined to fall back and protect an early 1-0 lead, cautiously attempting to preserve three points, you should root for an RSL win to further purge the Fire from the playoff picture.

Columbus Crew vs. Seattle Sounders FC (Sat., 1:30 p.m. PT / MLS Direct Kick)
This one is a no-brainer. Vive la Crew! A Sounders FC loss would breathe new life into the chase pack while allowing San Jose to distance itself from the tenuous No. 8 spot.

Houston Dynamo vs. Toronto FC (Sat., 5:30 p.m. PT / MLS Direct Kick)
The Dynamo are too far back to be considered serious playoff contenders, but Toronto FC is next-in-line at No. 9 with 28 points. Quakes fans should hope the Reds recent turmoil continues in a Lone Star State loss on Saturday.

Colorado Rapids vs. New England Revolution (Sat., 6 p.m. PT / MLS Direct Kick)
San Jose's Front Office should send a fruit basket (or Quakes playoff tickets) to the Revs if New England can pull off the upset in Colorado. Another easy pick, the Bay Area is clearly backing the Revs in this one.

Los Angeles Galaxy vs. D.C. United (Sat., 7:30 p.m. PT / FSC)
Beseeching Quakes fans to root against the Galaxy is like urging grass to grow - you don't need to ask because nature takes its course. That said, a United win makes the top of the Western Conference a bit murkier.

Chivas USA vs. Kansas City Wizards (Sun., 5 p.m. PT MLS Direct Kick)
The Wizards are a team many experts believe could crash the playoff party. Kansas City has played two fewer games than Sounders FC and trail Seattle by six points. Chivas is in the mix as well with 25 points in 23 games. Both teams need a win so San Jose fans should hope for a draw. If one team must earn three points, the lesser of two evils would be Chivas USA.

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