MLS is making one final tweak to the schedule ahead of Decision Day.
With the New York Red Bulls and FC Dallas both vying for the league's Supporters' Shield, MLS has moved the Red Bulls' match vs. the Chicago Fire to the same time as FC Dallas's clash with the San Jose Earthquakes. All teams in the Eastern Conference were slated to play at 5 p.m. ET and all teams in the Western Conference at 7 p.m. as the league adopts the season-finale custom seen around the world.
With both the Red Bulls and FCD on 57 points, though, the league took the final step to ensure they'd play at the same time (7 p.m. ET) and determine the winner one way or another at around 9 p.m. ET.
“We created Decision Day to ensure that we have the most compelling and competitively-driven matches played simultaneously on the final day of our regular season,” MLS deputy commissioner and president Mark Abbott said in a statement. “Changing the time of the Fire-Red Bulls match fulfills our vision, and will provide an exciting finish to our Supporters’ Shield race.”
The Red Bulls currently have the edge on FC Dallas due to a six-goal advantage in goal differential. Should the teams both play to a draw, the Red Bulls would capture the shield for the second time in three seasons. If FC Dallas manages to take it, it would mark the first for the franchise. Whichever team wins the Shield also has the inside track on hosting MLS Cup, provided the team reaches the final, as the finalist with the best regular-season record earns the right to host the title match.