- Associated Press - Sunday, October 23, 2016

The defending champions are heading home, FC Dallas claimed the Supporters’ Shield and the Seattle Sounders’ second-half revival continued on an eventful final day of the Major League Soccer regular season.

In the Western Conference there were four teams vying Sunday for the final three playoff spots beneath Dallas, Colorado and the Los Angeles Galaxy.

The Sounders fired coach Sigi Schmid after a disappointing first half but climbed six spots in the West, capped by Sunday’s 2-1 victory over Real Salt Lake. Seattle will host Sporting Kansas City in a knockout match on Thursday night. Sporting beat the San Jose Earthquakes 2-0.

“The last two results we had weren’t wins, and we needed to get into the playoffs on our own, so we didn’t have to rely on anybody else,” Seattle interim coach Brian Schmetzer said. “We wanted to make sure we get the nice little bump and the confidence and everything that comes along with a win like this against a tough team to beat.”

Salt Lake will visit the Galaxy and unretired striker Landon Donovan on Wednesday night in the other knockout match in the West. Los Angeles played to a scoreless draw against Dallas, with Donovan making his second start since returning last month.

The defending MLS Cup champion Portland Timbers were eliminated from the playoffs with a 4-1 loss at Vancouver. With the Columbus Crew already eliminated going into the final day, it marked the first time in league history that the finalists from the prior season did not make the playoffs.

Dallas claimed its first Supporters’ Shield for highest point total by finishing 17-8-9 for 60 points. As the top seed, Dallas is assured home-field advantage throughout the playoffs and for the MLS Cup match if they make it that far.

With the Shield and a U.S. Open Cup trophy, Dallas is one trophy away from the historic treble if they can bring home the MLS Cup. No other team has claimed all three trophies in a single season.

“Now we have our next objective, and the next one is the playoffs,” Dallas coach Oscar Pareja said. “Obviously, that will make us feel that the treble is possible but this group of players has not put that as a priority. We always just go one at a time.”

Colorado, which finished at the bottom of the league last season, missed out on the Shield with a 1-1 draw against Houston. But the Rapids did earn the first-round bye with Dallas.

Bradley Wright-Phillips of the New York Red Bulls won the Golden Boot award with 24 regular-season goals. He’s the third player to win the award twice, joining Chris Wondolowski and Jeff Cunningham.

The Red Bulls finished in the top spot in the Eastern Conference, three points up on rival New York City FC. Both get opening-round byes.

Toronto FC, which had already claimed a playoff spot, snapped a five-game winless streak with a 3-2 victory over Chicago, which was already eliminated. Toronto’s 53 points were a franchise best.

Toronto will host Philadelphia in a knockout game on Wednesday. The Union fell 0-2 to the Red Bulls but claimed the sixth and final spot in the East because of New England’s 3-2 victory over Montreal. The Revolution fell out of playoff contention despite the win because of goal differential.

“If we can understand what’s gotten us to this point, concentrate on every little detail, make sure that when the lights come on that every guy is ready to spill their guts onto the field. If we’re able to make the important plays at both ends of the field, then I think I like our chances,” Toronto captain Michael Bradley said.

The Impact will visit D.C. United in the East’s other knockout match on Thursday night. United fell 4-2 on Sunday to Orlando, which was already eliminated.

NYCFC beat the Crew 4-1.

The Whitecaps, already eliminated going into the final game against the Timbers, won the Cascadia Cup. The fan-created trophy goes to the winner of the three-way competition between the Sounders, Timers and Whitecaps based on points.

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