MLS playoff prospects explained

With the race for the two wild berth play off places in the MLS starting to become so tight we delved into the vaults to find what the tie breakers are for teams that finish on the same points.

With the race for the two wild berth play off places in the MLS starting to become so tight we delved into the vaults to find what the tie breakers are for teams that finish on the same points.

New York, Kansas City, DC United, Toronto FC, Real Salt Lake, FC Dallas, Colorado, LA Galaxy and San Jose could all still finish in a wild berth place with two games to go in the regular season. With some teams playing against each other three times and on other occasions only twice it will get a little confusing, we will keep you updated as the possibilities unfold once each team has one game remaining.

Here is how the tiebreakers will be decided:

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)

4) If the teams are still equal in the standings, the procedures described in this section shall be applied only to games played on the road by each team against all other teams during the regular season. (road 1-3)

5) If the teams are still equal in the standings, the procedures described in this section shall be applied only to games played at home by each team against all other teams during the regular season. (home 1-3)

6) If the teams are still equal in the standings, the highest position shall be awarded to the team with the fewest team disciplinary points in the League Fair Play table during the regular season.

7) If the teams are still equal in the standings, the highest position in the standings shall be determined by the toss of a coin.

8) The first tiebreaker in a three-way tie is also head-to-head, but it is determined via points-per-game versus the other two teams. If two teams are tied in points-per-game head-to-head, the next tie breaker is goal difference.

NOTE: If two clubs remain tied after another club with the same number of points advances during any step, the tie breaker reverts to step 1 of the two-club format.

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