CARSON, CA - : Referee Chris Penso to Chivas USA "You can do it! You just got to believe!" (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images)
"Impossible is nothing" --MLS sponsor adidas' 2006 World Cup slogan
Despite being last in the league in the most important offensive category (say it with me now: goals!), Chivas USA actually has a chance of making the playoffs.
The great website playoffstatus.com maintains a running count of the Western Conference playoff picture. By their estimate Chivas USA has a 5% chance of making the playoffs
So you're saying there's a chance? Indeed. Yes, despite being stuck on 28 points for the better part of a month now, the Goats can make the playoffs with a lot of help from the Colorado Rapids, FC Dallas and the Vancouver Whitecaps.
Read on for how after the jump!
As we said at the beginning of the year, you can pretty much write in Real Salt Lake, the Seattle Sounders and the LA Galaxy with permanent ink. With the San Jose Earthquakes clinching a spot earlier this week, that leaves one spot up for grabs.
Let's look at the prospects for each team:
Vancouver has faltered lately, going pointless since August 11th. The Whitecaps have five games remaining but control their own destiny. Four of their five remaining games are at home and their last game will be in Rio Tinto. Three opponents (Rapids, the Portland Timbers and Chivas) have losing records while Seattle and RSL are both tough opponents.
Current Points: 37
Maximum Points: 52
FC Dallas has only four games left and sit one point behind Vancouver with 36. Dallas plays a home and an away with Chivas and plays on the road against two very good home squads in Seattle and San Jose.
Current Points: 36
Maximum Points: 48
The playoff status website gives the Colorado Rapids a lower percentage shot (1%) than Chivas. Despite being a point up and having five games left--three of which are at home--they face stiffer odds because their opponents, on paper, are the fiercest opposition. The only squad they face without double-digit wins is Chivas USA.
Current Points: 29
Maximum Points: 46
Chivas has the most room to move up since they have six games left split evenly between home and away. Moreover their last four games are against Colorado, Dallas, and Vancouver placing those wins in the theoretical "six-point win" territory.
Current Points: 28
Maximum Points: 44
So as you can see here, 44 is the magic number. If Vancouver, FC Dallas or Colorado reach 44 points then Chivas is officially out. Remember: ties will be decided on goals scored where Chivas is last in the league with a tally of 21.
What do you think about the Goats playoff chances? Leave a comment below!