Both of these teams will open the USL Championship Playoffs on the road, but their seeding and opponent is yet to be determined. Both sides could finish anywhere from fifth to seventh depending on this result and the result in Pittsburgh a few hours later. We’ll explain the specific scenarios below.
This match is important for both sides, but it is absolutely vital for Oakland. If Roots SC wins, it guarantees itself a playoff berth no matter what happens elsewhere. If Oakland drops points, scenarios come into play that leave Oakland on the outside looking in when the night ends. See more on those scenarios below.
The Rowdies will be heavily favored to win this contest, and, if they do, they’ll put a ton of pressure on Memphis 901 FC’s match in Tulsa for the No. 2 seed. Tampa Bay can still finish ahead of Memphis with a win if Memphis draws or loses. If Memphis loses, even a draw is enough for Tampa to take second place.
Memphis will secure the No. 2 seed with a victory over FC Tulsa, but dropped points open the door for the Rowdies, depending on what happens in their match that kicks off an hour earlier. If Tampa Bay wins, Memphis will need a win to hold onto second.
The Toros know they’re in as long as they don’t lose to Monterey Bay F.C. The only way for them to miss out on the playoff field is to lose this game and for Oakland and Las Vegas both to win their matches.
New Mexico has its spot in the postseason booked, but it can still move up to fourth and host a Western Conference Quarterfinal if it beats Colorado Springs and the Sacramento Republic FC loses at home to San Diego Loyal SC an hour later. New Mexico can finish as low as seventh with a loss and wins by both RGV FC and Oakland.
If Sacramento manages at least a point out of this match, it will host its Western Conference Quarterfinal match regardless of what happens elsewhere.
Las Vegas must win to have a chance at reaching the playoffs. If both RGV FC and Oakland both win their earlier kickoffs, Las Vegas is out no matter what. If Oakland drops points and Lights FC wins, Las Vegas will sneak past Oakland into the playoff field via a head-to-head tiebreaker.
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