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MLS Playoffs semifinals round

The League had scheduled a full Sunday of MLS playoffs action with four first leg semifinals games. 

Atlanta United is the only club that grab a win away from home [1-0 at New York City FC] and in a very good position to advance onto the next round. 

Atlanta’s captain, Parkhurst reacts on the tough win:

“Every playoff game is like that. You have to bring it physically, especially on this tight field. New York is very difficult to play on this field. It’s a big challenge to come in here and get a good result so we’re very happy with that.

“It was ugly out there at times. You have to win the fight. Today, if we didn’t win the fight, we at least equalled it and that was good.”

Leg 2 is set to be a wild and close contest. 

Columbus Crew put pressure on the regular season’s best team with a 1-0 win over NY Red Bulls. Former LA Galaxy Zardes gave the lift for the Crew:

NYRB captain Robles on how to turn it around: 

“We know this is the playoffs and we’ll have our backs up against the wall. This team’s been through a lot. I’m confident in the group and in the experiences that we’ve had throughout the past two years to get a result. We’re all eager and looking forward to being back home.

The belief is high and the confidence is great that we’re going to do something special and we have what it takes to overcome this obstacle. We know that we need to go back, regroup, and look at the video at how we can do things better, but there isn’t discouragement in this group.”

Portland Timbers also won 2-1 against Seattle Sounders in the Northwestern derby and take a small advantage. 

Sounders coach, Schmetzer, understands what to do is simple to advance:

“It wasn’t the result we wanted, but at the end of the day we got a road goal. That always helps, something to put in your pocket for later. We understand we have to win the game on Thursday. Those are the facts. I thought the team put everything into it.

We go home, we’re strong at home, our fans will give us the extra push we need because they always do,We can get a good result, I’m very confident.

Real Salt Lake will need a positive result at Sporting Kansas to keep the season alive after the 1-1 draw at home. 

Real Salt Lake coach Petke on the draw:

“It’s halftime right now. I will say my players credit because they were a little tired. Kansas City is top of the West for a reason. They’re extremely organized and won’t give you anything but tonight we didn’t give them much in terms of getting big time opportunities on goal.

Second half we came out with a heck of a lot more gusto, but in the first half we were kind of slow with the ball movement and our off-ball movement but our shape was very good for our second straight game.

It was an unfortunate situation on their goal, but it’s half time right now. It’s 1-1. With a week’s rest, fresh with that same mentality as far as being compact and the off ball gets better, I’m looking forward to the game next Sunday.”