(Photo credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports)
It's a tight race for the playoffs in the MLS Western Conference, and few teams are more familiar with it than FC Dallas.
Coming off a 0-0 draw with their Texas rivals, the Houston Dynamo, FC Dallas (10-10-11, 41 points) sit in the ninth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference and will have to keep pace with the rest of the jockeying clubs to earn their spot in the postseason.
They will host a struggling Colorado Rapids (5-15-11, 26 points) side, the only Western team already eliminated from playoff contention, on Wednesday in Frisco, Texas.
The Rapids have won just five games this season but have picked up form recently, with a 2-2-1 record in their last five matches, including a 1-0 win last time out against Austin FC. Meanwhile, FC Dallas went undefeated in September but have won just once in their last seven outings.
Both clubs have three games to play, including Wednesday night's clash.
"The goal for this team is to play in the playoffs -- it's our goal that we set from the beginning of the season," Dallas head coach Nico Estevez said. "Having a strong mentality like we showed in the last two road games can help us heading into the final stretch."
While the hopes of a playoff spot are lost for the Rapids, they continue to have the opportunity to slash other clubs' postseason dreams in the final few games while playing for future opportunities in 2024.
"All of the opponents we're playing are in similar positions; they're either fighting to get in the playoffs, or they're in the playoffs and fighting for home advantage," Colorado interim head coach Chris Little said. "It's a bitter pill to be in the position we're in ... we have to win some more games and finish the season as positively as possible for our fans."
Rapids goalkeeper Marko Ilic and their backline will look to keep another clean sheet on Wednesday and shut down Dallas' talismanic forward, Jesus Ferreira, who has 12 goals in 24 games this season.
--Field Level Media