The best teams in the MLS regular season all face the same challenge of going into their second leg down a goal to their opponents. So how do the MLS squads deal with being a goal down?
DC United against Chicago- will the Fire attempt to defend with eight players and attack with three players. I say yes based on the last time coming into RFK the Fire drew 0-0 and limited the chances of United. Yes, Cuauhtemoc Blanco will be asked to create magic but many times he will get the ball tonite with few targets in front of him.
United must counter with the energy that they can feed off with Luciano Emilio and Jaime Moreno back in the lineup.
Their wide play with Fred and Ben Olsen will be key to break down a deep defending team.
United will have to be careful not to get caught on the counter-attack through Blanco, Chris Rolfe and potentially Chad Barrett.
But can they defend the lead against the “trio of envy” who are back together from the start.
Houston vs FC Dallas- FC Dallas looks to pull off a major upset but will have to deal with waves of attacks. The must build on their success where they defended the flanks strongly after getting the first goal in game one. Defend too deep, allow delivery and it could be a troublesome night, they will need to come out and play during time periods and gain a measure of possession.
The longer it goes 0-0 with the Dynamo the more it could prey on the defending champions minds with the recent scoring slump.
Dynamo will throw everything at FC Dallas off the opening whistle.
Chivas USA vs Kansas City- Is KC capable of bringing discipline to their game on Saturday? How do they deal with the one goal lead tactically?
Chivas USA are in trouble as fleet footed striker Maykel Galindo may not play due to a sports hernia and Ante Razov is out.
Talk of moving Jonathan Bornstein up front for CHivas USA by Preki makes us realize that he may not have much faith in John Cunliffe and Laurent Merlin.
Mistakes will be magnified and becoming too defensive could be the “kiss of death”.