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The Daily Dirt: Race for the Supporters' Shield heats up

NYRB and FC Dallas are taking it down to the wire.

John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

With only a couple of weeks left before the MLS Cup playoffs, the Supporters' Shield trophy still hasn't been decided, and it looks like the regular season champion will be decided at the last possible moment. New York Red Bulls had a chance to all but lock up the trophy Wednesday night, but instead fell at Toronto FC, 2-1. TFC clinched a berth in the Eastern Conference playoffs thanks to a fantastic goal from Sebastian Giovinco.

FC Dallas picks up three more points in a 2-0 win over Vancouver Whitecaps [Big D Soccer]

Thanks to the home win over Vancouver, FC Dallas pulled level with NYRB atop the standings on 54 points. FCD still has work to do, though: The Red Bulls hold the upper hand thanks to a better goal differential, plus-15 to plus-11.

Portland Timbers Grab 1-0 Win From the Spot, Beat Real Salt Lake [Stumptown Footy]

The Timbers took a three-point lead over San Jose for the final playoff spot in the West thanks to a converted penalty from Fanendo Adi in the 54th minute. Salt Lake's playoff hopes are all but dashed, and fans are already eulogizing the season.

Jurgen Klinsmann doesn't need to work harder [SSFC]

"He needs to work smarter. Smarter begins with self-evaluation and recognizing where things have gone wrong."

What's happening in The A?

The Hawks continued their perfect preseason run with a 100-86 win over the Spurs at Philips Arena Wednesday night. Thabo Sefolosha played his first minutes since his leg was broken by a New York City police officer in April.

Despite some concerns earlier in the week, Julio Jones is active for the Falcons' Thursday night game against the Saints. He's officially listed as probable on the injury report.

The Braves have announced the development adjacent to SunTrust Park will be called The Battery, and a few big Atlanta restaurant names are on board.