MLS 2012, Week 30 preview and fixtures: Poor Canada, Vermes vs. Backe and the Alamo

Jamie Squire

Does anyone in Eastern Canada care about soccer anymore, can Peter Vermes and Hans Backe spell tactics and what does Davy Crockett think about the Crew?

There are two weeks left in the MLS season and the Supporters' Shield race is all but done. San Jose is going to claim that one, but the rest of the battle of importance are still up for grabs. There is first place in the East, the final playoff spots in each conference and which Eastern Canadian team is bottom of the barrel (hint: Toronto). You will notice that the Cascadia Cup is not included because any trophy that Portland could win is illegitimate.

Toronto FC vs. Montreal Impact

Saturday, 1:30 p.m. ET, MLS Live

And to the winner goes a slightly less depressing offseason. Well, actually that is only true for Montreal because Toronto cannot possibly hate itself any more than it already does and no more wins this MLS season can cheer them up. Such is the plight of barely being a professional soccer club.

Pick: The NHL, even in a lockout.

New York Red Bulls vs. Sporting Kansas CIty

Saturday, 7:00 p.m. ET, MLS Live

The Red Bulls are doing their best to claw out of the dreaded wild card game, while falling out of the playoffs all together is still a possibility. Unfortunately for them, they have to play Sporting, who have not lost a match since July, and that run includes a 2-0 win at Red Bull Arena just one month ago. But while the outcome might seem set in stone (it isn't since this is MLS, where history and form mean close to nothing because MLS), tune in because the Peter Vermes vs. Hans Backe managerial battle is a good bet to win the Emmy for Outstanding Comedy Series.

Pick: Draw, 1-1.

D.C. United vs. Columbus Crew

Saturday, 7:30 p.m. ET, MLS Live

This might be the Crew's last stand and while nothing in Columbus reminds anyone of the Alamo, Davy Crockett or Coonskin caps, it might take a similarly heroic battle for them to make it into the playoffs. Important note: The Texians were defeated in the Battle of the Alamo and almost every Texian died, Crockett included.

Pick: D.C., 2-1.

New England Revolution vs. Chicago Fire

Saturday, 7:30 p.m. ET, MLS Live

If the Fire can pick up three points and get a Sporting loss they will move into first place in the Eastern Conference. This is the greatest test of their magic yet this season -- getting the Red Bulls to win a match of importance.

Pick: Chicago, 2-0.

Houston Dynamo vs. Philadelphia Union

Saturday, 7:30 p.m. ET, NBC Sports Network

The Dynamo are just barely in the playoffs, leading the Crew by a single point, and have a vital CONCACAF Champions League match midweek, which they need a result out of to advance to the knockout stages. Both of them are at home, too, so expect to hear "fixture congestion" and that the Dynamo are undefeated at BBVA Compass Stadium every 45 seconds. Start a drinking game at your own risk.

Pick: Houston, 1-0.

Chivas USA vs. Colorado Rapids

Saturday, 10:30 p.m. ET, MLS Live

Holy irrelevant and boring, Batman!

Pick: Your neighborhood bar.

San Jose Earthquakes vs. LA Galaxy

Sunday, 7:00 p.m. ET, Galavision

"I'm not at all troubled by those two games [losses to SJ earlier this season] at this point in my life. I'm moving on, I was not happy in the short term with those games, but now I've put it past me, I'm looking for greater things in life. I had a grandchild born, we're in the middle of a heated Presidential election, [the U.S.] lost a difficult Ryder Cup, the Yankees are hanging on for life so really I don't give two shits about the last time that we played San Jose."

- Bruce Arena, noted and lovable pottymouth in need of a hug, still.

Pick: San Jose, 2-1.

Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Portland Timbers

Sunday, 7:00 p.m. ET, MLS Live

The Whitecaps will make the playoffs with a win, while the Timbers will take home the Cascadia Cup if they win. Either way, the winner will be upset when the rest of the league doesn't care.

Pick: Vancouver, 2-0.

Seattle Sounders vs. FC Dallas

Sunday, 9:00 p.m. ET, ESPN

If the world was a good place, Vancouver would lose and Seattle would intentionally lose to give Dallas a chance at passing up the Caps for the final playoff spot, while also making Portland realize how little everyone cares about the Cascadia Cup in their year of puke. Dramaaaaaa! But seriously, who do we have to pay to make this happen?

Pick: Seattle, 1-0.

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