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The Daily Dirt, November 26: Rocky Mountain High

First MLS Cup participant to be decided tomorrow

MLS: Orlando City SC at Colorado Rapids Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The second legs of the Conference Finals start tomorrow with Seattle heading to Colorado holding a 2-1 lead. Montreal takes a 3-2 lead to Toronto on Wednesday needing to regroup after giving up two goals while up 3-0.

Both home teams in the second leg were able to get a prized away goal in the first game, Toronto nabbing two. Last year, the lower seeds were able to hold their first leg leads to reach MLS Cup. Can Colorado and Montreal do the same this year?

For Colorado to overtake the Sounders, they will have to score. As the lowest scoring team to qualify for the postseason, that will not be easy for the Rapids. They will be looking to Dominique Badji, Kevin Doyle and their talisman Shkëlzen Gashi to lead the attack.

Seattle might keep outside backs Tyrone Mears and Joevin Jones at home a little more on Sunday to protect their lead. Cristian Roldan will be key in midfield, he has really developed into an important part of the Sounders’ lineup this season. With Nicolas Lodeiro in the team, Seattle does not need to generate a huge amount of chances to steal a goal on the road.


Domestic

Marc Burch not impressed with Nicolas Lodeiro’s “antics” (Denver Post)

Chicago going all out for Bastian Schweinsteiger:

San Jose chasing Celtic defender Emilio Isaguirre (Daily Mail)

Portland says that Darlington Nagbe is not for sale (Soccer America)

15 most salary cap friendly players in MLS (FourFourTwo)

If Atlanta is interested in outside back Kevin Alston, they might have some competition:

Vancouver feels like they are close to being a playoff team with a few tweaks (Goal)

Roundtable discussion about best USMNT long-term coaching option (SI)

Tampa Bay Rowdies owner seeking control of the Ft. Lauderdale Strikers after they default on a loan he gave them this summer (St. Petersblog)

International

Soccer’s grassroots issues in Canada (WSA Winnipeg)

Review of recent A-League action from Australia (FourFourTwo)