Goal celebration vs. Seattle Sounders FC
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If The Season Ended Today: Oct. 2, 2012

The Earthquakes’ heroics this past Saturday against FC Dallas secured a point for the Supporters’ Shield chasers. The win keeps the Earthquakes in first place in the Western Division and gives them a three point advantage over Sporting Kansas City in the race for the Supporters Shield with three games left. This would be the Earthquakes first Supporters’ Shield since 2005 and second overall.

Despite the LA Galaxy’s 1-1 tie against the Colorado Rapids on Sunday, the Galaxy currently sit in third place and have clinched a playoff spot. Real Salt Lake is second, Seattle fourth and Vancouver fifth to round out the playoff picture.

If the season ended today, the Earthquakes would have home field advantage against the winner of fourth place Seattle and fifth place Vancouver in a Western Conference semifinal. Real Salt Lake would face off against their Hollywood rivals, the LA Galaxy, in the other semifinal. In the Eastern Conference, Sporting Kansas City would face the winner of fourth place DC United and fifth place Houston.  The New York Red Bulls, sitting in second place, would be pitted against the resolute third place Chicago Fire.

Sporting Kansas City remains the only team to secure a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. A mere seven point difference stands between fourth place D.C. United and Sporting Kansas City. The Chicago Fire have a game in hand in what will surely be an exciting conclusion to the regular season in the Eastern Conference, highlighted by the marquee matchup of New York vs. Sporting Kansas City on Saturday, October 20.

While the Earthquakes have a comfortable nine-point lead over second place Real Salt Lake, three points stand between RSL and the fourth-place Seattle Sounders. The Sounders, however, have a game in hand. Real Salt Lake will travel to the Home Depot Center this Saturday in a key Western Conference (and possible playoff) matchup against the LA Galaxy. The small point differential in both conferences may see changes in playoff matchups in a very narrow playoff race.

Remaining schedules

10/6 at Colorado
10/21 vs LA Galaxy (Galavision)
10/27 at Portland (NBC Sports)

10/6 at LA Galaxy (NBC Sports)
10/17 at Seattle
10/27 vs Vancouver

10/6 vs Salt Lake (NBC Sports)
10/21 at San Jose (Galavision)
10/28 vs Seattle (ESPN)

10/7 vs Portland (ESPN)
10/17 vs Salt Lake (ESPN)
10/21 vs Dallas
10/28 at LA Galaxy (ESPN)

10/3 vs Chivas USA
10/21 vs Portland
10/27 at Salt Lake

Sporting Kansas City
10/7 at Columbus
10/20 at New York
10/24 vs Philadelphia

New York
10/6 vs Chicago Fire
10/20 vs Sporting KC
10/27 at Philadelphia

10/3 vs Philadelphia
10/6 at New York
10/20 at New England
10/27 vs D.C. United

D.C. United
10/6 at Toronto
10/20 vs Columbus
10/27 at Chicago

10/6 vs Montreal
10/20 vs Philadelphia
10/23 vs Olimpia
10/27 at Colorado

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