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OCT 27
3:30 PM ET
ESPN
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Playoff Picture: Thorns have a chance to clinch in Week 19
With a win and some help from FC Kansas City, the Thorns will be in the playoffs for the second straight year
Portland Thorns FC goalkeeper Adrianna Franch celebrates at Providence Park. (Photo credit: Craig Mitchelldyer/isiphotos.com)
Portland Thorns FC goalkeeper Adrianna Franch celebrates at Providence Park. (Photo credit: Craig Mitchelldyer/isiphotos.com)

Heading into Week 19’s weekend games, the four teams in playoff position are the Courage (already clinched a spot), Thorns, Red Stars and Pride. Though both teams are tied on points, Chicago holds the third spot over Orlando because the first tiebreak in the NWSL is head-to-head and the Red Stars are 2-0-1 vs. the Pride this season.

This weekend, the Thorns have a chance to become the second team to clinch a spot in 2017 NWSL Playoffs and the Courage could clinch a home semifinal game.

This weekend’s playoff scenarios: The Thorns can clinch a spot in the 2017 NWSL Playoffs with:

-a win vs. the Spirit (Sat, 3:30 p.m. ET, Lifetime)
AND
-a Sky Blue FC loss or tie vs. FC Kansas City

 


The Courage can clinch a home semifinal game with:

-win vs. Red Stars
OR
-tie vs. Red Stars
AND
-Pride tie vs. Breakers

 


FC Kansas City will be eliminated from playoff contention with:

-loss vs. Sky Blue FC
AND
-Red Stars win or tie vs. Courage

OR

-draw vs. Sky Blue FC
AND
-Red Stars win vs. Courage
AND
Pride win or tie vs. Breakers

 


 

 

Here’s a look at where each team sits in the NWSL standings, their remaining schedule and their magic number to clinch a playoff spot.

1. NORTH CAROLINA COURAGE

14-5-0, 42 pts

Goal Differential: +13
Games Remaining: 5
Max Points Possible: 57
Clinched a spot in the NWSL Playoffs

Remaining schedule:

  • Sun., Sep. 3: at Red Stars
  • Sat., Sep. 9: vs. Dash
  • Sun., Sep. 24: at Sky Blue FC
  • Sat., Sep. 30: vs. Pride
  • TBD: Postponed game at Dash

2. PORTLAND THORNS FC

11-5-4, 37 pts

Goal Differential: +10
Games Remaining: 4
Max Points Possible: 49
Magic Number: 5
Elimination Number:

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Sept. 2: vs. Spirit
  • Sun., Sept. 10: at Breakers
  • Sat., Sept. 23: at Pride
  • Sat., Sept. 30: vs. Red Stars

3. CHICAGO RED STARS

9-6-5, 32 pts

Goal Differential: +3
Games Remaining: 4
Max Points Possible: 44
Magic Number: 10
Elimination Number:

Remaining schedule:

  • Sun., Sept. 3: vs. Courage
  • Sat., Sept. 9: at FC Kansas City
  • Sat., Sept. 23: at Dash
  • Sat., Sept. 30: at Thorns FC

4. ORLANDO PRIDE

9-6-5, 32 pts

Goal Differential: +11
Games Remaining: 4
Max Points Possible: 44
Magic Number: 10
Elimination Number:

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Sept. 2: vs. Breakers
  • Sat., Sept. 9: vs. Reign FC
  • Sat., Sept. 23: vs. Thorns FC
  • Sat., Sept. 30: at Courage

5. SKY BLUE FC

9-9-2, 29 pts

Goal Differential: -6
Games Remaining: 4
Max Points Possible: 41
Magic Number:
Elimination Number: 10

Remaining schedule:

  • Sun., Sept. 3: at FC Kansas City
  • Sun., Sept. 10: vs. Spirit
  • Sun., Sept. 24: vs. Courage
  • Sat., Sept. 30: at Breakers

6. SEATTLE REIGN FC

7-7-6, 27 pts

Goal Differential: +5
Games Remaining: 4
Max Points Possible: 39
Magic Number:
Elimination Number: 8

Remaining schedule:

  • Sun., Sept. 3: at Dash
  • Sat., Sept. 9: at Pride
  • Sun., Sept. 24: vs. FC Kansas City
  • Sun., Sept. 30: at Spirit

7. FC KANSAS CITY

6-9-5, 23 pts

Goal Differential: -6
Games Remaining: 4
Max Points Possible: 35
Magic Number:
Elimination Number: 4

Remaining schedule:

  • Sun., Sept. 3: vs. Sky Blue FC
  • Sat., Sept. 9: vs. Red Stars
  • Sun., Sept. 24: at Reign FC
  • Fri., Sept. 29: vs. Dash

8. HOUSTON DASH

7-10-2, 23 pts

Goal Differential: -9
Games Remaining: 5
Max Points Possible: 38
Magic Number:
 Elimination Number: 7

Remaining schedule:

  • Sun., Sept. 3: vs. Reign FC
  • Sat., Sept. 9: at Courage
  • Sat., Sept. 23: vs. Red Stars
  • Fri., Sept. 29: at FC Kansas City
  • TBD: Postponed game vs. Courage

9. BOSTON BREAKERS

3-10-7, 16 pts

Goal Differential: -10
Games Remaining: 5
Max Points Possible: 28
Eliminated from playoff contention

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Sept. 2: at Pride
  • Sun., Sept. 10: vs. Thorns FC
  • Sat., Sept. 23: at Spirit
  • Sat., Sept. 30: vs. Sky Blue FC

10. WASHINGTON SPIRIT

4-12-4, 16 pts

Goal Differential: -11
Games Remaining: 4
Max Points Possible: 31
Eliminated from playoff contention

Remaining schedule:

  • Sat., Sept. 2: at Thorns FC
  • Sun., Sept. 10: at Sky Blue FC
  • Sat., Sept. 23: vs. Breakers
  • Sat., Sept. 30: vs. Reign FC

 


Magic Number formula*
The Magic Number for a team to clinch a playoff spot is determined by subtracting that team’s current points total from the maximum number of points possible for the fifth-place team, then adding one.

Elimination Number Formula*
The Elimination Number for a team to confirm their exclusion from the playoffs is determined by subtracting that team’s maximum number of possible points from the current number of points of the fourth-place team, then adding one.

* = The Magic Number or Elimination Number for each team does not reflect scenarios that require tiebreakers. Tiebreaker scenarios are required when a team’s Magic Number or Elimination Number is 1.

 

Tiebreaker Procedures To Break a Tie in the Standings

If two or more teams are tied on points at the end of the regular season, the tie will be broken through the following steps:

Two teams

1.Head-to-head record
2.Overall goal difference
3.Overall goals scored
4.Head-to-head road record
5.Goal difference in all road games
6.Goals scored in all road games
7.Head-to-head home record
8.Goal difference in all home games
9.Goals scored in all home games
10.Coin toss

Three teams

1.Points per game against other two teams

2.Overall goal difference

3. See tiebreaker procedure for two-team scenarios
NOTE: If two teams are still tied after the third team has advanced via the tiebreaker, the tie will be broken using the two-team tiebreaker rules.

 

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