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2011 Major League Soccer season

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Title: 2011 Major League Soccer season  
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Subject: 2011 New York Red Bulls season, David Beckham, 2011 Columbus Crew season, 2011 MLS Cup Playoffs, 2011 Houston Dynamo season
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2011 Major League Soccer season

Major League Soccer
Season 2011
MLS Cup Los Angeles Galaxy
Supporters' Shield Los Angeles Galaxy
Champions League (U.S.) Los Angeles Galaxy
Seattle Sounders FC (via U.S. Open Cup)
Real Salt Lake
Houston Dynamo
Champions League (Canada) Toronto FC (via Canadian Championship)
Matches played 306
Goals scored 795 (2.6 per match)
Top goalscorer Dwayne De Rosario and Chris Wondolowski (16 goals)
Biggest home win NY 5–0 TOR
(July 6)
Biggest away win DCU 0–4 NY
(April 21)
TOR 2–6 PHI
(May 28)
VAN 0–4 LA
(July 30)
Highest scoring 8 goals:
TOR 2–6 PHI
(May 28)
SEA 6–2 CLB
(August 27)
PHI 4–4 NE
(September 7)
Longest winning run 5 matches:
Real Salt Lake[1]
(August 27 – Sep 21)
Longest unbeaten run 14 matches:
Los Angeles Galaxy[1]
(May 7 – July 30)
Sporting KC[1]
(May 28 – August 3)
Longest winless run 14 matches:
Vancouver Whitecaps FC[1]
(March 26 – June 11)
Longest losing run 5 matches:
Sporting KC[1]
(April 16 – May 21)
New England Revolution[1](September 16 – October 15)
Highest attendance 64,140[2]
SJ @ SEA
Lowest attendance 6,680[3]
TOR @ NE
Average attendance 17,872[4]
2010
2012

The 2011 Major League Soccer season was the 99th season of FIFA-sanctioned soccer, the 33rd with a national first-division league, in the United States and Canada, and the 16th season of Major League Soccer. The season marked the arrival of two new league clubs, Portland Timbers and Vancouver Whitecaps FC, whose cities previously had clubs of similar name play in the USSF D2 Pro League. Those two new West Coast clubs led to a realignment of the league's conferences, with Houston Dynamo moving to the Eastern Conference to create two conferences of nine teams each.

Each team played a balanced 34-match regular season schedule, playing every team twice (once at home and once away). The regular season began on March 15, when the Los Angeles Galaxy defeated the Seattle Sounders FC 1–0 at Qwest Field, and concluded with the host Houston Dynamo defeating the Los Angeles Galaxy 3–1 on October 23 at Robertson Stadium. The season also featured the 2011 MLS All-Star Game on July 27, when Manchester United defeated the MLS All-Stars 4–0 at Red Bull Arena (hosted by the New York Red Bulls). The 2011 MLS Cup Playoffs ran from October 26 until November 20, when the Los Angeles Galaxy claimed their third MLS championship by defeating Houston Dynamo 1–0 in MLS Cup 2011 at Home Depot Center in Carson, CA.[5][6][7]

Changes from 2010

A number of structural changes were made prior to this season, involving both on- and off-the field aspects of the league.

Structural changes

To accommodate the arrival of the two new franchises, the league expanded the number of regular season matches to 34 total games.

The MLS Cup Playoffs expanded from eight teams to ten.[8] Beginning with this season, the best three teams from each conference receive guaranteed playoff spots; the four teams with the next best point totals will play one-match knockout games to determine the final participant for each conference.[9] With the new playoff structure, comes a new incentive for the MLS Supporters Shield winner, who will play the lowest seeded team to qualify for the conference semifinals.

Furthermore, the MLS Reserve Division returned; the rosters accordingly expanded to 30 players. Other minor changes included the shortening of the MLS SuperDraft from four rounds, down to three,[10] and the expansion of the number of guaranteed spots reserved for away supporters from 150 to 500.

Roster rule changes

Team rosters were expanded to 30 players in order to accommodate the re-introduction of the MLS Reserve Division. Of these 30 players, 18–20 count against a club's salary cap of $2,675,000. Clubs may still have a maximum of three Designated Players per club, each of whom counts $335,000 for salary cap purposes. The transfer windows for acquisition of players under contract in another country run from January 21 – April 15 and from July 15 – August 14.

Other key roster rule changes were the introduction of Off-Budget players who do not count against a club's salary cap; the ability of clubs to forgo fielding a full roster of 30 players for salary reasons; the introduction of roster slots paid below last year's league minimum; the ability of the two Canadian clubs to count U.S. domestic players as domestic players for roster purposes; and the ability of clubs to buy out one guaranteed player contract during the off-season and free up the corresponding budget space.[11]

Managerial changes

Team Outgoing coach Manner of departure Date of vacancy Table Incoming coach Date of appointment Table
Portland Timbers
Expansion club
John Spencer August 10, 2010 Pre-season
Chivas USA Martín Vásquez Fired October 27, 2010 8th West ('10) Robin Fraser January 4, 2011 Pre-season
Toronto FC Nick Dasovic Caretaker September 14, 2010 5th East ('09) Aron Winter January 6, 2011 Pre-season
Vancouver Whitecaps FC Teitur Thordarson Fired May 29, 2011 9th West ('11) Tom Soehn May 29, 2011 9th West ('11)
Chicago Fire Carlos de los Cobos Fired May 30, 2011 8th East ('11) Frank Klopas May 30, 2011 8th East ('11)

Teams

Two new expansion clubs entered the league: Portland Timbers and Vancouver Whitecaps FC. These clubs, alluding to their history, are the immediate successors to clubs that played in the USSF D2 Pro League in 2010, and before that the USL First Division. Both clubs also bear the names of members of the original North American Soccer League.

Further, the Kansas City Wizards rebranded as Sporting Kansas City and moved into their new stadium at Livestrong Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kansas.

Finally, with the arrival of two West Coast clubs, the Houston Dynamo transferred to the Eastern Conference.[12]

Stadiums and locations

Chicago Fire Chivas USA Colorado Rapids Columbus Crew D.C. United FC Dallas
Toyota Park The Home Depot Center Dick's Sporting Goods Park Crew Stadium RFK Memorial Stadium Pizza Hut Park
Capacity: 22,000 Capacity: 27,000 Capacity: 19,680 Capacity: 20,455 Capacity: 45,596 Capacity: 21,193
Houston Dynamo Los Angeles Galaxy New England Revolution New York Red Bulls Philadelphia Union Portland Timbers
Robertson Stadium The Home Depot Center Gillette Stadium Red Bull Arena PPL Park Jeld-Wen Field
Capacity: 32,000 Capacity: 27,000 Capacity: 22,385 Capacity: 25,189 Capacity: 18,500 Capacity: 20,323
Real Salt Lake San Jose Earthquakes Seattle Sounders FC Sporting Kansas City Toronto FC Vancouver Whitecaps FC
Rio Tinto Stadium Buck Shaw Stadium CenturyLink Field Livestrong Sporting Park BMO Field BC Place1
Capacity: 20,008 Capacity: 10,300 Capacity: 36,700 Capacity: 18,467 Capacity: 23,000 Capacity: 22,000
Notes

1Vancouver Whitecaps played home matches at Empire Field prior to moving into the newly renovated BC Place on October 2, 2011.[13]

Personnel and sponsoring

Both of the new teams to MLS received jersey sponsors, while several existing teams saw changes in jersey sponsorships for the 2011 season.

Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players and managers may hold one or more non-FIFA nationalities.
Team Head Coach Captain Kit manufacturer Shirt sponsor
Chicago Fire Klopas, FrankFrank Klopas Pause, LoganLogan Pause Adidas
Chivas USA Fraser, RobinRobin Fraser Elliott, SimonSimon Elliott Adidas Corona
Colorado Rapids Smith, GaryGary Smith Mastroeni, PabloPablo Mastroeni Adidas
Columbus Crew Warzycha, RobertRobert Warzycha Marshall, ChadChad Marshall Adidas
D.C. United Olsen, BenBen Olsen Wolff, JoshJosh Wolff Adidas Volkswagen
FC Dallas Hyndman, SchellasSchellas Hyndman Hernández, DanielDaniel Hernández Adidas
Houston Dynamo Kinnear, DominicDominic Kinnear Ching, BrianBrian Ching Adidas Greenstar
Los Angeles Galaxy Arena, BruceBruce Arena Donovan, LandonLandon Donovan Adidas Herbalife
New England Revolution Nicol, SteveSteve Nicol Joseph, ShalrieShalrie Joseph Adidas UnitedHealthcare
New York Red Bulls Backe, HansHans Backe Henry, ThierryThierry Henry Adidas Red Bull
Philadelphia Union Nowak, PiotrPiotr Nowak Mondragón, FarydFaryd Mondragón Adidas Bimbo
Portland Timbers Spencer, JohnJohn Spencer Jewsbury, JackJack Jewsbury Adidas Alaska Airlines
Real Salt Lake Kreis, JasonJason Kreis Beckerman, KyleKyle Beckerman Adidas XanGo
San Jose Earthquakes Yallop, FrankFrank Yallop Corrales, RamiroRamiro Corrales Adidas Amway Global
Seattle Sounders FC Schmid, SigiSigi Schmid Keller, KaseyKasey Keller Adidas Xbox
Sporting Kansas City Vermes, PeterPeter Vermes Arnaud, DavyDavy Arnaud Adidas
Toronto FC Winter, AronAron Winter Frings, TorstenTorsten Frings Adidas Bank of Montreal
Vancouver Whitecaps FC Soehn, TomTom Soehn DeMerit, JayJay DeMerit Adidas Bell Canada

League standings

Overall table

Pos
Team
Pts
GP
W
L
T
GF
GA
GD
Qualification or relegation
1 LA Galaxy (SS) (W1) 67 34 19 5 10 48 28 +20 2011 MLS Cup Conference Semifinals, 2012–13 CONCACAF Champions League Group Stage 2
2 Seattle Sounders FC 63 34 18 7 9 56 37 +19 2011 MLS Cup Conference Semifinals 1
3 Real Salt Lake 53 34 15 11 8 44 36 +8
4 FC Dallas 52 34 15 12 7 42 39 +3 2011 MLS Cup Play-In Round
5 Sporting Kansas City (E1) 51 34 13 9 12 50 40 +10 2011 MLS Cup Conference Semifinals 1
6 Houston Dynamo 49 34 12 9 13 45 41 +4
7 Colorado Rapids 49 34 12 9 13 44 41 +3 2011 MLS Cup Play-In Round
8 Philadelphia Union 48 34 11 8 15 44 36 +8 2011 MLS Cup Conference Semifinals 1
9 Columbus Crew 47 34 13 13 8 43 44 −1 2011 MLS Cup Play-In Round
10 New York Red Bulls 46 34 10 8 16 50 44 +6
11 Chicago Fire 43 34 9 9 16 46 45 +1
12 Portland Timbers 42 34 11 14 9 40 48 −8
13 D.C. United 39 34 9 13 12 49 52 −3
14 San Jose Earthquakes 38 34 8 12 14 40 45 −5
15 Chivas USA 36 34 8 14 12 41 43 −2
16 Toronto FC 33 34 6 13 15 36 59 −23
17 New England Revolution 28 34 5 16 13 38 58 −20
18 Vancouver Whitecaps FC 28 34 6 18 10 35 55 −20
Updated to matches played on October 22, 2011 (NER v TFC). Source: MLSSoccer.com
Notation Key:
(SS)=Supporters Shield winner
(E1)=Eastern Conference champion
(W1)=Western Conference champion


Conference standings

Eastern Conference

Pos
Team
Pts
GP
W
L
T
GF
GA
GD
Qualification or relegation
1 Sporting Kansas City (E1) 51 34 13 9 12 50 40 +10 2011 MLS Cup Conference Semifinals
2 Houston Dynamo 49 34 12 9 13 45 41 +4
3 Philadelphia Union 48 34 11 8 15 44 36 +8
4 Columbus Crew 47 34 13 13 8 43 44 −1 2011 MLS Cup Play-In Round
5 New York Red Bulls 46 34 10 8 16 50 44 +6
6 Chicago Fire 43 34 9 9 16 46 45 +1
7 D.C. United 39 34 9 13 12 49 52 −3
8 Toronto FC 33 34 6 13 15 36 59 −23
9 New England Revolution 28 34 5 16 13 38 58 −20
Updated to matches played on October 20, 2011. Source: MLSSoccer.com
Notation Key:
(E1)=Eastern Conference champion
  • ^Note 1 - The top three clubs in each conference are guaranteed spots in the 2011 MLS Cup Conference Semifinals. The other four clubs in the playoffs enter via-wild card entrees, regardless of their conference, based on their overall standings in a single table.

Western Conference

Pos
Team
Pts
GP
W
L
T
GF
GA
GD
Qualification or relegation
1 LA Galaxy (SS) (W1) 67 34 19 5 10 48 28 +20 2011 MLS Cup Conference Semifinals
2 Seattle Sounders FC 63 34 18 7 9 56 37 +19
3 Real Salt Lake 53 34 15 11 8 44 36 +8
4 FC Dallas 52 34 15 12 7 42 39 +3 2011 MLS Cup Play-In Round
5 Colorado Rapids 49 34 12 9 13 46 42 +4
6 Portland Timbers 42 34 11 14 9 40 48 −8
7 San Jose Earthquakes 38 34 8 12 14 40 45 −5
8 Chivas USA 36 34 8 14 12 41 43 −2
9 Vancouver Whitecaps FC 28 34 6 18 10 35 55 −20
Updated to matches played on October 22, 2011. Source: MLSSoccer.com
Notation Key:
(SS)=Supporters Shield winner
(W1)=Western Conference champion
  • ^Note 1 - The top three clubs in each conference are guaranteed spots in the 2011 MLS Cup Conference Semifinals. The other four clubs in the playoffs enter via wild card entrees, regardless of their conference, based on their overall standings in a single table.

Tiebreakers

  1. Head-to-Head (Points-per-match average)
  2. Overall Goal Differential
  3. Overall Total Goals Scored
  4. Tiebreakers 1–3 applied only to matches on the road
  5. Tiebreakers 1–3 applied only to matches at home
  6. Fewest team disciplinary points in the League Fair Play table
  7. Coin toss

If more than two clubs are tied, once a club advances through any step, the process reverts to Tiebreaker 1 among the remaining tied clubs recursively until all ties are resolved.[19]

Results

For the second year in a row, the league uses a balanced schedule. Each team will play every other team twice, home and away, for a total of 34 games.[20]

Home \ Away[1] CHI CHV COL CLB DCU FCD HOU LAG NER NY PHI POR RSL SJE SEA SKC TOR VAN
Chicago Fire 3–2 2–0 3–2 1–1 1–2 1–1 1–2 3–2 1–1 1–1 0–1 0–0 2–2 0–0 3–2 2–0 0–0
Chivas USA 1–1 0–1 0–0 0–3 1–2 3–0 0–1 3–0 0–0 1–1 1–0 0–1 2–0 1–3 2–3 3–0 1–1
Colorado Rapids 1–1 2–2 2–0 4–1 1–0 0–0 1–3 2–2 4–1 1–1 3–1 0–0 1–1 0–1 1–1 0–0 2–1
Columbus Crew 0–1 3–3 4–1 2–1 2–0 2–2 0–1 3–1 0–0 2–1 1–0 2–1 0–0 1–1 1–0 2–4 2–1
D.C. United 1–2 2–2 1–1 3–1 0–0 2–2 1–1 0–1 0–4 2–2 1–1 4–1 2–4 2–1 0–1 3–3 4–0
FC Dallas 1–1 1–0 3–0 2–0 0–0 0–1 2–1 1–0 0–1 2–0 4–0 0–0 0–2 0–1 1–4 1–0 2–0
Houston Dynamo 1–1 2–1 1–2 0–2 4–1 2–2 3–1 1–0 2–2 0–1 2–1 3–2 2–1 3–1 1–1 2–0 3–1
LA Galaxy 2–1 1–0 1–0 1–0 0–0 3–1 1–0 1–1 1–1 1–0 3–0 2–1 2–0 0–0 4–1 2–2 3–0
New England Revolution 1–1 2–3 0–0 0–3 2–1 2–0 1–1 0–1 2–2 4–4 1–1 0–2 1–2 1–2 3–2 0–0 1–0
New York Red Bulls 2–2 2–3 2–2 1–1 0–1 2–2 1–1 2–0 2–1 1–0 2–0 1–3 3–0 1–0 1–0 5–0 1–1
Philadelphia Union 2–1 3–2 1–2 1–0 3–2 2–2 1–1 1–1 3–0 1–0 0–0 1–1 1–0 1–1 0–0 1–1 1–0
Portland Timbers 4–2 1–0 0–1 1–0 2–3 3–2 0–2 3–0 3–0 3–3 1–0 1–0 1–1 2–3 1–2 2–2 2–1
Real Salt Lake 0–3 1–0 1–0 0–2 1–1 2–0 0–0 4–1 3–3 3–0 2–1 1–1 4–0 1–2 1–0 3–1 2–0
San Jose Earthquakes 2–0 1–2 1–2 3–0 0–2 4–2 2–0 0–0 2–1 2–2 0–0 1–1 0–1 2–2 1–1 1–1 2–2
Seattle Sounders FC 2–1 0–0 4–3 6–2 3–0 0–1 1–1 0–1 2–1 4–2 0–2 1–1 1–2 2–1 1–0 3–0 2–2
Sporting Kansas City 0–0 1–1 1–1 2–1 1–0 2–3 3–0 2–2 1–1 2–0 1–1 3–1 2–0 1–0 1–2 4–2 2–1
Toronto FC 2–2 1–1 2–1 1–1 0–3 0–1 2–1 0–0 2–2 1–1 2–6 2–0 1–0 1–1 0–1 0–0 1–0
Vancouver Whitecaps FC 4–2 0–0 1–2 0–1 2–1 1–2 1–0 0–4 1–1 1–1 1–0 0–1 3–0 1–1 1–3 3–3 4–2
Updated to games played on October 20, 2011.
Source: official website
^ The home team is listed in the left-hand column.
Colours: Purple = home team win; Yellow = draw; Red = away team win.
For coming matches, an a indicates there is an article about the match.

Positions by Round

Overall

Team \ Round 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34
LA Galaxy 5 6 12 4 7 7 6 3 3 6 5 4 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
Seattle Sounders FC 13 17 16 17 13 12 11 9 10 9 10 6 10 6 7 7 5 4 5 4 4 3 3 3 4 3 3 3 2 2 2 2 2 2
Real Salt Lake 5 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 3 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 3 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 3
FC Dallas 9 14 18 13 16 8 8 10 5 2 3 3 4 2 3 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4
Sporting Kansas City 4 11 8 12 15 18 18 18 18 18 18 16 14 14 14 10 11 11 11 9 8 7 10 8 7 7 7 7 7 6 5 6 5 5
Colorado Rapids 2 2 1 2 3 5 7 5 4 7 7 7 7 8 6 8 8 8 8 8 9 8 7 7 6 5 5 5 5 7 7 7 9 6
Houston Dynamo 13 13 14 7 5 4 4 8 9 8 9 12 13 13 10 12 12 14 9 11 13 11 12 9 10 9 9 12 12 10 8 10 8 7
Philadelphia Union 5 3 3 3 2 2 3 4 6 3 2 2 3 5 5 4 4 5 4 5 5 6 5 6 8 8 8 8 8 5 6 5 6 8
Columbus Crew 17 14 11 10 6 6 5 6 8 10 11 11 8 9 8 5 7 6 7 7 6 5 6 5 5 6 6 6 6 8 9 8 7 9
New York Red Bulls 5 7 5 11 4 3 2 2 2 5 4 5 5 4 4 6 6 7 6 6 7 10 9 11 11 11 11 10 11 9 10 9 10 10
Chicago Fire 9 4 9 14 17 16 16 14 16 17 16 17 17 15 15 15 15 15 15 16 16 16 16 15 15 14 15 14 13 13 13 13 12 11
Portland Timbers 17 18 17 15 9 10 9 7 7 4 6 8 11 10 12 13 14 13 14 14 12 13 13 13 13 12 12 11 10 12 11 11 11 12
D.C. United 2 8 13 15 8 9 14 11 12 14 8 10 12 12 11 11 9 9 12 10 10 9 8 10 9 10 10 9 9 11 12 12 13 13
San Jose Earthquakes 13 10 7 7 14 17 17 17 15 13 13 9 6 7 9 9 10 10 10 12 14 14 14 14 14 15 14 15 15 15 15 15 15 14
Chivas USA 12 16 15 17 18 13 10 12 10 12 12 13 9 11 13 14 13 12 13 13 11 12 11 12 12 13 13 13 14 14 14 14 14 15
Toronto FC 16 12 10 9 10 15 13 15 14 15 15 15 16 17 17 17 17 17 16 17 17 17 18 17 17 17 17 17 17 16 16 16 16 16
New England Revolution 9 5 4 5 11 14 12 13 13 11 14 14 15 16 16 16 16 16 17 15 15 15 15 16 16 16 16 16 16 17 17 18 18 17
Vancouver Whitecaps FC 1 8 6 6 12 11 15 16 17 16 17 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 17 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 17 17 18

Last updated: Oct 23, 2011 (EST)
Source: mlssoccer.com

Eastern Conference

Team \ Round 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34
Sporting Kansas City 2 6 4 7 8 9 9 9 9 9 9 8 6 6 6 4 5 5 5 4 4 3 5 3 2 2 2 2 2 2 1 2 1 1
Houston Dynamo 7 8 9 3 3 3 3 4 4 3 4 5 5 5 4 6 6 6 4 6 6 6 6 4 5 4 4 6 6 5 3 5 4 2
Philadelphia Union 3 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 3 3 3 3 3 1 2 1 2 3
Columbus Crew 9 9 7 5 4 4 4 3 3 4 5 4 3 3 3 2 3 2 3 3 2 2 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 3 4 3 3 4
New York Red Bulls 3 4 3 6 2 2 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 1 1 3 2 3 2 2 3 5 4 6 6 6 6 5 5 4 5 4 5 5
Chicago Fire 5 2 5 8 9 8 8 7 8 8 8 9 9 7 7 7 7 7 7 8 8 8 8 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 6 6
D.C. United 1 5 8 9 5 5 7 5 5 6 3 3 4 4 5 5 4 4 6 5 5 4 3 5 4 5 5 4 4 6 6 6 7 7
Toronto FC 8 7 5 4 6 7 6 8 7 7 7 7 8 9 9 9 9 9 8 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 8 8 8 8 8
New England Revolution 5 3 2 2 7 6 5 6 6 5 6 6 7 8 8 8 8 8 9 7 7 7 7 8 8 8 8 8 8 9 9 9 9 9

Last updated: Oct 23, 2011 (EST)
Source: mlssoccer.com

Western Conference

Team \ Round 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34
LA Galaxy 3 3 5 3 3 3 2 2 2 4 3 3 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
Seattle Sounders FC 7 8 7 8 6 7 7 5 6 6 6 4 7 4 5 4 4 4 4 4 4 3 3 3 4 3 3 3 2 2 2 2 2 2
Real Salt Lake 3 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 3 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 3 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 3
FC Dallas 5 6 9 6 8 4 4 6 4 2 2 2 3 2 3 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4
Colorado Rapids 2 2 1 2 2 2 3 3 3 5 5 5 5 6 4 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5
Portland Timbers 9 9 8 7 4 5 5 4 5 3 4 6 8 7 7 7 8 8 8 8 7 7 7 7 7 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6
San Jose Earthquakes 7 5 4 5 7 9 9 9 8 8 8 7 4 5 6 6 6 6 6 6 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 7
Chivas USA 6 7 6 8 9 8 6 7 6 7 7 8 6 8 8 8 7 7 7 7 6 6 6 6 6 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 8
Vancouver Whitecaps FC 1 4 3 4 5 6 8 8 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9

Last updated: Oct 20, 2011, 2011 (EST)
Source: mlssoccer.com

Playoff bracket

Wild Card Game 1
     
7 FC Dallas 0
10 New York Red Bulls 2
Wild Card Game 2
     
8 Colorado Rapids 1
9 Columbus Crew 0
  Conference Semifinals Conference Finals MLS Cup 2011
                             


E1  Sporting Kansas City 2 2  
WC  Colorado Rapids 0 0  
  E1  Sporting Kansas City 0  
Eastern Conference
  E2  Houston Dynamo 2  
E2  Houston Dynamo 2 1
E3  Philadelphia Union 1 0  
  E2  Houston Dynamo 0
  W1  LA Galaxy 1
W1  LA Galaxy 1 2  
WC  New York Red Bulls 0 1  
  W1  LA Galaxy 3
Western Conference
  W3  Real Salt Lake 1  
W2  Seattle Sounders FC 0 2
W3  Real Salt Lake 3 0  

Note: The LA Galaxy, as MLS Supporters Shield winners, were assured of playing the lower seeded Wild Card series winner (New York Red Bulls) in the Conference Semifinals, while Sporting Kansas City would play the higher seeded Wild Card series winner (Colorado Rapids).

Statistical leaders

Full article: MLS Golden Boot

Top goalkeepers

(Minimum of 1,000 minutes played)[1]
Rank Goalkeeper Club
GAA SV GA Mins GP W-L-T ShO
1 Donovan Ricketts Los Angeles Galaxy 0.77 41 11 1284 15 7–3–4 7
2 Josh Saunders Los Angeles Galaxy 0.93 55 17 1639 19 12–2–4 8
3 Kevin Hartman FC Dallas 1.06 85 35 2970 33 15–11–7 13
Faryd Mondragón Philadelphia Union 1.06 49 28 2385 27 8–8–11 7
5 Kasey Keller Seattle Sounders FC 1.09 110 37 3060 34 18–7–9 9
Nick Rimando Real Salt Lake 1.09 95 36 2970 33 14–11–8 13
7 Bouna Coundoul New York Red Bulls 1.13 37 13 1035 12 3–2–6 3
8 Jimmy Nielsen Sporting Kansas City 1.14 79 35 2767 31 12–8–11 7
9 Tally Hall Houston Dynamo 1.21 99 41 3060 34 12–9–13 6
Matt Pickens Colorado Rapids 1.21 77 41 3060 34 12–9–13 8
11 Dan Kennedy Chivas USA 1.22 100 39 2880 31 8–12–12 9
12 Troy Perkins Portland Timbers 1.31 91 38 2610 29 9–12–8 9

Last updated on October 23, 2011. Source: MLSsoccer.com statistics – Goalkeeping

Individual awards

Annual awards

MLS Player of the Year[22]
Player Club
Dwayne De Rosario D.C. United

Monthly awards

Month MLS Player of the Month MLS W.O.R.K.S. Humanitarian of the Month
Player Club Link Player Club Link
March Nick Rimando Real Salt Lake 1GA 2–0–0 Fredy Montero Seattle Sounders FC March Humanitarian
April Brad Davis Houston Dynamo 6A 3–0–2 Daniel Hernández FC Dallas April Humanitarian
May Landon Donovan Los Angeles Galaxy 6G Danny Cruz Houston Dynamo May Humanitarian
June Graham Zusi Sporting Kansas City 2G 3GWA 3–0–3 Zak Boggs New England Revolution June Humanitarian
July Kevin Hartman FC Dallas 4SO 6GS Jeb Brovsky Vancouver Whitecaps FC July Humanitarian
August Dwayne De Rosario DC United 3G 2A Jack Jewsbury Portland Timbers August Humanitarian
September Sébastien Le Toux Philadelphia Union 7G Mehdi Ballouchy
Jason Hernandez
Michael Lahoud
Logan Pause
New York Red Bulls
San Jose Earthquakes
Chivas USA
Chicago Fire
September Humanitarians
October Chris Wondolowski San Jose Earthquakes 5G Geoff Cameron Houston Dynamo October Humanitarian

Weekly awards

Week Player of the Week AT&T Goal of the Week[23] MLS Save of the Week[24]
Player Club Player Club Player Club
Week 1[25] Omar Bravo Sporting Kansas City Juan Agudelo New York Red Bulls Nick Rimando Real Salt Lake
Week 2[26] Javier Morales Real Salt Lake Javier Martina Toronto FC Jake Gleeson Portland Timbers
Week 3[27] Camilo Vancouver Whitecaps FC Khari Stephenson San Jose Earthquakes Kasey Keller Seattle Sounders FC
Week 4[28] David Ferreira FC Dallas O'Brian White Seattle Sounders FC Kasey Keller Seattle Sounders FC
Week 5[29] Luke Rodgers New York Red Bulls Jorge Perlaza Portland Timbers Jake Gleeson Portland Timbers
Week 6[30] Landon Donovan Los Angeles Galaxy Juan Agudelo New York Red Bulls Donovan Ricketts Los Angeles Galaxy
Week 7[31] Will Bruin Houston Dynamo Brek Shea FC Dallas Bobby Shuttleworth New England Revolution
Week 8[32]
Ecuador
Joao Plata
Toronto FC Thierry Henry New York Red Bulls Tim Ream New York Red Bulls
Week 9[33] Justin Braun Chivas USA David Beckham Los Angeles Galaxy Stefan Frei Toronto FC
Week 10[34] Jeff Parke Seattle Sounders FC Carlos Ruiz Philadelphia Union Troy Perkins Portland Timbers
Week 11[35] Justin Mapp Philadelphia Union Lamar Neagle Seattle Sounders FC Donovan & DeLaGarza Los Angeles Galaxy
Week 12[36] Jean Alexandre Real Salt Lake Jean Alexandre Real Salt Lake Kasey Keller Seattle Sounders FC
Week 13[37] Steven Lenhart San Jose Earthquakes Eric Hassli Vancouver Whitecaps FC Greg Sutton New York Red Bulls
Week 14[38] Bernardo Anor Columbus Crew Fredy Montero Seattle Sounders FC Teemu Tainio New York Red Bulls
Week 15[39] Mike Magee Los Angeles Galaxy Tyson Wahl Seattle Sounders FC Mike Magee Los Angeles Galaxy
Week 16[40] Joel Lindpere New York Red Bulls Darlington Nagbe Portland Timbers Brian Perk Los Angeles Galaxy
Week 17[41] Fredy Montero Seattle Sounders FC David Beckham Los Angeles Galaxy Troy Perkins Portland Timbers
Week 18[42] Mauro Rosales Seattle Sounders FC Carlos Ruiz Philadelphia Union Troy Perkins Portland Timbers
Week 19[43] Sanna Nyassi Colorado Rapids Kei Kamara Sporting Kansas City Jimmy Nielsen Sporting Kansas City
Week 20[44] Dwayne De Rosario D.C. United Roger Torres Philadelphia Union Andy Gruenebaum Columbus Crew
Week 21[45] Dwayne De Rosario D.C. United Luis Gil Real Salt Lake Jimmy Nielsen Sporting Kansas City
Week 22[46] Chris Pontius D.C. United Adam Moffat Houston Dynamo Miloš Kocić Toronto FC
Week 23[47] Graham Zusi Sporting Kansas City Graham Zusi Sporting Kansas City Kasey Keller Seattle Sounders FC
Week 24[48] Lamar Neagle Seattle Sounders FC Lamar Neagle Seattle Sounders FC Nick Rimando Real Salt Lake
Week 25[49]
No award given
Kyle Beckerman Real Salt Lake Jimmy Nielsen Sporting Kansas City
Week 26[50] Charlie Davies D.C. United Davide Chiumiento Vancouver Whitecaps FC Joe Cannon Vancouver Whitecaps FC
Week 27[51] Danny Koevermans Toronto FC Álvaro Fernández Seattle Sounders FC Zac MacMath Philadelphia Union
Week 28[52] Dwayne De Rosario D.C. United Fredy Montero Seattle Sounders FC Troy Perkins Portland Timbers
Week 29[53] Marco Pappa Chicago Fire Kenny Cooper Portland Timbers Nick Rimando Real Salt Lake
Week 30[54]
No award given
Chris Wondolowski San Jose Earthquakes Kasey Keller Seattle Sounders FC
Week 31[55] Kasey Keller Seattle Sounders FC Danny Cruz Houston Dynamo Kasey Keller Seattle Sounders FC
Week 32[56] Jalil Anibaba Chicago Fire Adam Moffat Houston Dynamo Jimmy Nielsen Sporting Kansas City

Transfers

Major League Soccer employs no fewer than 12 methods to acquire players. These include: signing players on transfers/free transfers as is done in most of the world; via trades; drafting players through mechanisms such as the MLS SuperDraft, MLS Supplemental Draft, or MLS Re-Entry Draft; rarely used methods which cover extreme hardship and injury replacement; signing players as Designated Players or Homegrown Players; placing a discovery claim on players; waivers; and methods peculiar to MLS such as through allocation or a weighted lottery.[57]

Allocation ranking

The allocation ranking is the mechanism used to determine which MLS club has first priority to acquire a U.S. National Team player who signs with MLS after playing abroad, or a former MLS player who returns to the League after having gone to a club abroad for a transfer fee. The allocation rankings may also be used in the event two or more clubs file a request for the same player on the same day. The allocations will be ranked in reverse order of finish for the 2010 season, taking playoff performance into account.

Once the club uses its allocation ranking to acquire a player, it drops to the bottom of the list. A ranking can be traded, provided that part of the compensation received in return is another club’s ranking. At all times, each club is assigned one ranking. The rankings reset at the end of each MLS League season.[57]

Original Ranking Club Date Allocation Used Player Signed Previous Club Ref
1 Vancouver Whitecaps FC November 18, 2010 Jay DeMerit Watford [58]
2 Portland Timbers January 17, 2011 Kenny Cooper 1860 Munich [59]
3 D.C. United February 16, 2011 Charlie Davies Sochaux¤ [60]
4 Chivas USA
5 Philadelphia Union August 12, 2011 Freddy Adu Benfica [61]
6 New England Revolution April 19, 2011 Benny Feilhaber AGF Aarhus [62]
7 Houston Dynamo
8 Toronto FC
9 Seattle Sounders FC¤¤ August 26, 2011 Sammy Ochoa Estudiantes Tecos [63]
10 Sporting Kansas City

¤ Davies was signed by United on a twelve-month loan deal.
¤¤ Chicago originally had the No. 9 ranking but traded it to Seattle on August 26, 2011.[64]

The remaining order after Sporting Kansas City is: Chicago Fire¤¤, Columbus Crew, New York Red Bulls, Real Salt Lake, San Jose Earthquakes, Los Angeles Galaxy, FC Dallas, and Colorado Rapids. In the unlikely event that all clubs use an allocation, the order begins anew with Vancouver Whitecaps FC.

Weighted lottery

Some players are assigned to MLS teams via a weighted lottery process. A team can only acquire one player per year through a weighted lottery. The players made available through lotteries include: (i) Generation adidas players signed after the MLS SuperDraft; and (ii) Draft eligible players to whom an MLS contract was offered but who failed to sign with the League prior to the SuperDraft.

The team with the worst record over its last 30 regular season games (dating back to previous season if necessary and taking playoff performance into account) will have the greatest probability of winning the lottery. Teams are not required to participate in a lottery. Players are assigned via the lottery system in order to prevent a player from potentially influencing his destination club with a strategic holdout.

The results of 2011 weighted lotteries thus far:

Lottery Date Player Position Winning Club Other Clubs Participating Ref
January 26, 2011 David Bingham GK San Jose Earthquakes New England Revolution, Toronto FC, Chicago Fire, Seattle Sounders FC, Columbus Crew, New York Red Bulls, Colorado Rapids, FC Dallas, Real Salt Lake, Los Angeles Galaxy, Portland Timbers, Vancouver Whitecaps FC [65]
February 11, 2011 Cody Arnoux FW Real Salt Lake Houston Dynamo, Seattle Sounders FC, Columbus Crew, Portland Timbers, Vancouver Whitecaps FC [66]
February 14, 2011 Chris Agorsor FW Philadelphia Union Portland Timbers, Vancouver Whitecaps FC [67]
February 15, 2011 Korey Veeder DF Columbus Crew Toronto FC, Seattle Sounders FC, Colorado Rapids [68]
July 5, 2011 Soony Saad FW Sporting Kansas City Chivas USA, Chicago Fire, Portland Timbers [69]

Related competitions

International competitions

CONCACAF Champions League

Prior to the start of the MLS regular season, Columbus Crew and Real Salt Lake played against each other in the quarterfinals of 2010–11 edition of the CONCACAF Champions League. The first leg, contested at Crew Stadium on February 22, 2011; ended in a scoreless draw between the sides. On March 1, 2011; the second leg at Rio Tinto Stadium was played, where Real Salt Lake won the series against the Crew 4–1 in the game and on aggregate, this ending Columbus' Champions League campaign.

As a result, Salt Lake became the first MLS team to advance into the semifinals of the Champions League under its current format. The team won its home fixture against Saprissa of Costa Rica 2–0 on March 15, 2011. Real Salt Lake lost the away fixture 2–1 on April 5, 2011, but advanced 3–2 on aggregate. They faced Monterrey of Mexico in the first leg of the final on April 20 in Monterrey. The game concluded in a 2–2 draw. The second leg was played at Rio Tinto on April 27, 2011. Monterrey won 1–0 (3–2 on aggregate) with a late goal in the first half.

Colorado Rapids and Los Angeles Galaxy have qualified directly into Group Stage for the 2011–12 edition of the Champions League by being the MLS Cup and Supporters' Shield winners, respectively. Both Seattle Sounders FC and FC Dallas have earned preliminary entries in the tournament by winning the U.S. Open Cup and finishing runner up in the MLS Cup, respectively. Toronto FC secured the Canadian berth in the preliminary round with their Voyageurs Cup victory on July 2.

World Football Challenge

On March 29, 2011 MLS Commissioner Don Garber confirmed that the 2011 edition of the North American SuperLiga would be replaced by the World Football Challenge,[70] a friendly tournament which started play on July 14 and will end on August 6.[71]

The following MLS sides entered the tournament based on invitation: Los Angeles Galaxy, Philadelphia Union, New England Revolution, Chicago Fire and Vancouver Whitecaps FC.

Domestic competitions

Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup

The MLS clubs that finished first through sixth place overall during last year's regular season earned a direct bye to the third round proper of the U.S. Open Cup. Clubs that finished seventh or lower will have to play for the final two spots in a series of play-in propers, based on their geographic location as well as their final regular season position.

Canadian championship

The two Canadian-based MLS clubs, Toronto FC and Vancouver Whitecaps FC participated in the Canadian Championship, Canada's domestic soccer cup. They competed against two other professional Canadian soccer teams from the NASL for the Voyageurs Cup, as well as a Preliminary Round birth in the CONCACAF Champions League. The tournament is organized in a knockout format with two-legged ties in both the semifinals and final, with the away goals rule in place.

The two began in the semifinal round, where the Whitecaps defeated the Montreal Impact and Toronto defeated FC Edmonton. The first leg of the final, held in Vancouver on May 18, ended in a 1–1 draw. The second leg, on May 25 in Toronto, was abandoned due to torrential rains with the Whitecaps leading 1–0. Under competition rules, the second leg was to be replayed in its entirety the following day, but the field remained unplayable. The second leg was replayed, again in its entirety, on July 2, with Toronto winning the game 2–1 and the championship 3–2 on aggregate.

League competitions

MLS Cup

Following the 2011 season, ten MLS clubs will qualify for the MLS Cup Playoffs postseason tournament. Of the ten clubs, six will be automatic qualifiers from the top three clubs in each conference. These automatic qualifiers earn a bye to the conference semifinal, or quarterfinal round proper. Four more qualifiers will enter in a play-in round, where these for clubs will be determined by their final regular season standing, regardless of their conference. The winners of the play-in games will play in the conference semifinals, where the lowest seeded club will play against the Supporters' Shield winners.

The cup final will be held on a neutral venue.

Cups and Rivalries

This season marks the first time that the Cascadia Cup will be contested in Major League Soccer. Seattle, Portland and Vancouver contested this cup from 2004–08 until Seattle joined Major League Soccer. The competition continued between Portland and Vancouver for the next two years.

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