After a tense finish to the regular MLS season, the Play-offs are now in full swing. The best 5 teams in each division are entered into the tournament for the MLS Cup, with two teams from each division playing off in a knockout game that whittled the teams down to four. In the Western Conference, San Jose Earthquakes won their division and automatically entered alongside Real Salt Lake, Seattle Sounders and LA Galaxy with Vancouver Whitecaps piping Dallas to the final spot. LA knocked out Vancouver to progress to the semi finals and are looking to make regain their title from last year.
In the Eastern Conference, winners Sporting Kansas were joined by DC United, New York Red Bulls, Chicago Fire and Houston Dynamo’s with the latter two locking horns in the Knock out game. Houston came on top on that game 2-1 to set up a meeting with Sporting Kansas in the Semi’s. Going into the match, no one gave Houston a chance against the Conference Champions who won their division with ease. But the Texas team weren’t going to lie down and came out fighting eventually winning the game 2-0 with goals from Will Bruin and a 30 yard strike from Adam Moffat.
The Scottish born midfielder, who has spent the better part of his career in the US leagues since his move across the water to the Cleveland Stars in 2007, picked up the ball outside the area and with one touch struck a sweet volley across the goal and into the far corner. This however is not the first time that he has managed this feat, having scored from a similar distance last season against his old club, Portland Timbers. Having just arrived from Portland, the 40 yard strike was sure to have annoyed his old coach and fellow Scotsman John Spencer but as a striker, he could appreciate the sweetness of the strike.
Moffat and Houston now approach the second leg with much optimism but are well aware that Sporting Kansas have been in this situation before, twice coming from behind in the competition to win on aggregate (2004 – San Jose Earthquakes and 2001 – Miami Fusion).
Going into Wednesday’s game, the Dynamo fans will be hoping to see Moffat on the score sheet once more with another 30 to 40 yard drive that will surely send them through to the MLS Cup final.
To see the strike, click here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wv1SRCI15KM
To see his strike last year, click here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bqjXjRIMHgY
For More MLS news, check out: http://www.mlssoccer.com/mlscup/2012