So after the Orange County Blues lost a must-win game on Saturday at home to Rio Grande Valley FC, it’s back to the drawing board. The bad news? They’re on the outside looking in heading into the final weekend for the playoffs. The good news? They’ve still got a chance of reaching the postseason.
Here’s the breakdown of what the Blues need to do (and what else needs to happen) for them to grab a postseason berth:
- Beat Colorado Springs Switchbacks on Saturday in the regular season finale. If they don’t win, they are officially out, as they sit a point back of the current 8th place team, San Antonio FC, with SAFC well ahead of them in the goal difference column (SAFC is +3 to Blues’ -6).
- If they win, they need A) San Antonio FC to not win (a San Antonio draw would be ok for the Blues should they win)
- They would also need Portland Timbers 2, between the Blues and SAFC in 9th place, to either A) not win or B) Win, but only if the Blues can overcome the goal difference (T2 current -5 to OC’s -6 in GD). If the teams end up level on goal difference, then the Blues would win the third tiebreaker by USL rules, which is number of goals scored. Since they have a goal difference deficit to make up, they would have scored more goals if the teams end up level on goal difference.
It’s also possible if San Antonio, Timbers 2 and the Blues all lose for Real Monarchs, sitting behind OC in 11th place, to reach the playoffs if they win. So four teams going for one final playoff slot, with the Blues in the middle of the pack as far as the viability of their chances at this point. This week, when it’s absolute crunch time, they are not in the driver’s seat, but a win and some help will allow them to get in the dance. And if they’re in, then anything can happen, right?
What do you think? Leave a comment below!