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Scoreboard Watching 9/29-10/2

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Philadelphia and DC play Thursday. The two teams make a Red Bulls sandwich in the Wild Card playoff standings.
Philadelphia and DC play Thursday. The two teams make a Red Bulls sandwich in the Wild Card playoff standings.

Another week. More scoreboard watching.

After a week where the Red Bulls saw some pretty favorable results, with DC going 1-0-1 and Portland getting one out of a possible six points, the Bulls sit in the tenth playoff spot.

The Red Bulls gave themselves some help beating Portland, vaulting them into playoff position, albeit by a single point over a DC side with two games in hand. The rest of the playoff picture is a bit rosier for the Bulls this week, too, with the Union holding a single point advantage and Colorado holding onto the eight spot by three.

And in other news from the let's-not-get-ahead-of-ourselves department the Red Bulls are two points back of the top three teams in the Eastern Conference: Houston, Columbus and Kansas City.

Thursday, September 29

The mid-week match-up between Philadelphia and DC is a bit of a catch-22 for the Red Bulls as a DC win knocks the Red Bulls out of the "top 10" and a Union win adds to the slim lead Philly has over the Bulls. If the two teams play to a draw, though, DC ties the Red Bulls in points, but stay in out of the playoffs thanks to goal differential.

Sunday, October 2

A slumping Columbus side hosts DC Sunday in United's second game in three days. If DC can beat the Crew, who have posted a 0-4-1 record in their last five matches, there's a change they'll have the final playoff spot all to themselves.

Philadelphia travels cross-country to face off against a Chivas side that could use the three points to get back into the playoff picture. Again, if Philly can get the three points they'll only extend their lead on the Red Bulls, while a Chivas victory could put them back into the mix.

Outside of Saturday's trip to the Great White North to face Toronto, the Red Bulls are in a precarious situation. Thursday's game between DC and Philly, if it doesn't end in a draw, could create an interesting situation at the bottom of the playoff table. Thankfully, DC's games advantage will be erased and the Red Bulls will have a game in hand on Philly come Monday.

For the Red Bulls, though, the objective needs to be to keep winning, as if that wasn't obvious enough. Toronto FC should be a challenge, but one the Bulls should be able to overcome. The make-up game against LA will demand one of the best performances of the year out of the side. Four points shouldn't be completely out of the question and should keep the Bulls in good position to make the playoffs in the coming weeks.