By 90Min
October 20, 2019

MLS has finally reached the business end of its season, and the playoffs are in full-swing as the competition heads into its ruthless knockout rounds. 

It was a dramatic evening the world of soccer on Saturday, as Seattle Sounders, Real Salt Lake, Atlanta United and Toronto FC all made it through the first round in their search for MLS glory. 

Vaughn Ridley/GettyImages

Wayne Rooney's career Stateside will end in disappointment ahead of his January move to Derby County, after his side suffered an extra-time collapse in Canada, whilst Seattle Sounders also required an additional period to scrape through their tie against FC Dallas.

We take a look back at an exhilarating round of MLS Cup playoff fixtures. 


Toronto 5-1 D.C. United (AET) 

Toronto progressed to the next round of the MLS Cup playoffs, beating Rooney's D.C. United by five goals to one, but the victory was much more hard-fought than the scoreline suggests. 

Marky Delgado gave the hosts the lead just after the half-hour mark, capitalising on some poor to slot home from close-range. Toronto looked set to clinch a narrow victory until a 93rd minute Rooney corner was eventually lashed home by Lucas Rodriguez, taking the game to extra-time. 

The away side's last-gasp heroics were quickly forgotten, however, as Toronto bagged two quick-fire goals in the opening five minutes of extra-time to put the game beyond D.C. United. 

Jonathan Osario bagged a brace in the additional thirty minutes, including a lovely volley from the edge of the box, and Nick DeLeon rounded off the eventual drubbing to send Toronto to the semi-finals. 


Atlanta United 1-0 New England Revolution 

An equally tense affair saw Atlanta edge through to the semi-finals with a well-deserved 1-0 victory over New England Revolution. 

Former Aston Villa goalkeeper Brad Guzan was called into action for the hosts midway through the first half, palming away a long-range strike to keep the scores level. 

With the game seemingly heading to extra-time and both teams cancelling each other out, Atlanta right-back Franco Escobar sent the home fans into delirium, latching onto a clever through ball and rifling a powerful finish past New England Revolution goalkeeper Matt Turner. 


Josef Martinez had the chance to put the game beyond the away side, but Turner made an excellent stop to deny the pacy striker, but Atlanta progressed to the next round nonetheless. 


Real Salt Lake 2-1 Portland Timbers

Real Salt Lake advanced thanks to a 2-1 victory over Portland Timbers on Saturday night, but they didn't have it all their own way during a tight affair. 

Aaron Herrera almost gave the hosts the early advantage with an outrageous effort from 40 yards, but goalkeeper Steve Clark did superbly to deny a certain goal, tipping the ball over the crossbar. 

RSL did take the lead just after half an hour, however, Damir Kreilach heading home an in-swinging cross past a stricken Clark. The home side's joy was short-lived, as Dairon Asprilla powered a header into the net to bring Portland Timbers level just after the half-time break. 

The visitors had the better chances during the second half, but it was RSL who found the winning goal four minutes from time, Jefferson Savarino profiting from a brilliant Albert Rusnak dummy to cooly finish and send the home side through to the conference semi-finals. 


Seattle Sounders 4-3 FC Dallas (AET)

Seattle Sounders came out on top in a dramatic 4-3 win over FC Dallas, but they were made to work for their victory with a late extra-time strike separating the two sides. 

The hosts raced into a two-goal lead after 20 minutes, Raul Ruidiaz and Jordan Morris putting the Sounders in control. Reggie Cannon halved the deficit just before the break and Matt Hedges pulled the away side level just after the hour-mark with a bullet header from a corner. 

Seattle Sounders restored their advantage on 74 minutes, Morris doubling his tally with a close-range finish from another corner kick. The hosts were undone from another set-piece routine with ten minutes left to play, however, as Bryan Acosta arrived at the back post to nod home and take the game to extra-time. 

Both teams had chances to win the game in the additional 30 minutes, but a moment of pinball allowed the ball to drop to Morris, who completed his hat-trick with a downward header to put the hosts through to the next round.

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