MLS Week 14 preview: Texas Derby, more

Copa America kicks off Friday night, but Major League Soccer is squeezing in a few more matches before taking a break for the tournament. There are five midweek matches scheduled across Wednesday and Thursday night. In addition, all three of the league’s Canadian teams will be in action in the semifinals of the Voyageurs’ Cup.

Philadelphia Union vs. Columbus Crew SC, Wednesday at 7 p.m.

A Wednesday night match in Chester kicks things off for week 14. The Union have not lost since April, while the Crew enter the week off the back of their first win since April. The Union defeated Columbus at Mapfre Stadium in March; that early result now seems like a sign of how this season would unfold, rather than the outlier it was thought of at the time.

DC United vs. Seattle Sounders, Wednesday at 8 p.m.

DC and Seattle meet Wednesday night hoping to enter the break on a high note. The Sounders have yet to win away from home this season, and they enter this game having lost in New England over the weekend. A minor subplot: this will be Lamar Neagle’s first game playing against Seattle since leaving the club in the offseason. He scored a goal in his only previous game against the Sounders, with Montreal in 2012.

Portland Timbers vs. San Jose Earthquakes, Wednesday at 10:30 p.m.

Portland and San Jose will meet for the third and final time this regular season. In the two previous games, each team won at home, with the Earthquakes winning 2-1 in March, and the Timbers taking a 3-1 victory in April. No matter what happens tonight, the Quakes will go on break above the Timbers in the standings, and above the red playoff line out West.

New York City FC vs. Real Salt Lake, Thursday at 7 p.m. 

New York City plays host to Real Salt Lake on Thursday night. The current narrative around NYCFC is not a positive one, and yet they potentially could head into the break with the best record in the Eastern Conference. To do that, though, they’ll have to manage just their second win of the year at Yankee Stadium. RSL is averaging a point per game away from home this year, a very respectable total.

FC Dallas vs. Houston Dynamo, Thursday at 9 p.m.

The final game before the break is the Texas Derby. Dallas will have revenge on their minds; in the last meeting  back in March they received a 5-0 trouncing. Should Dallas win on Thursday night, they’ll have 30 points, the most in MLS going into the break. A Houston win, for comparison, would get them to 15.

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