Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Seattle Sounders, 2012 MLS: Final score 0-0, Sounders clinch playoff spot

Jeff Vinnick - Getty Images

A scoreless draw with their Cascadia rivals was enough for the Sounders to clinch a playoff spot.

The Seattle Sounders are heading to the playoff for the fourth time in as many seasons. A 0-0 draw over their Cascadia rivals, the Vancouver Whitecaps, was enough to clinch that, but it is a result that neither team will be particularly happy with after each failed to convert on late chances.

For Seattle, it was Jeff Parke who almost netted the winner. He did his job in beating Brad Knighton with his shot off of a corner kick, but Lee Young-Pyo was there to clear his attempt off the line. Later on, a Steve Zakuani shot took a deflection and looked like a sure goal, but a fine save by Knighton kept it out.

Vancouver's chance came in stoppage time. Kenny Miller mishit his header off a Barry Robson cross, but it worked out perfectly as it fell right to Camilo Sanvezzo, who was open six yards from goal. Camilo misfired, though, sending his shot inches wide of the post with the final strike of the game.

Despite being scoreless, the match was hardly boring even before the late chances. The referee was uninterested in calling pretty much everything so both teams were very physical. That played into the hands of Osvaldo Alonso, who was tremendous and not only cut out most of the Whitecaps' forays forward, but also keyed several moves forward.

But it seemed as if every time the Sounders went forward, they would just barely misfire with their final pass. Crosses just missed runners and through balls were barely out of rech of their intended targets.

Meanwhile, the Whitecaps did get forward, too. Darren Mattocks had a good chance, but was blocked at the last minute and Michael Gspurning was called upon to make three saves.

The split points leave Seattle in fourth place in the West, level with LA, but behind on goals scored. Vancouver is in fifth place, the final playoff position, and hold a two point lead on Dallas.

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