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By the Numbers: Playoff Edition

29 October 10:38 am

By the Numbers: Playoff Edition

By Sam Stejskal

Real Salt Lake played Vancouver Whitecaps FC to a 0-0 draw at Rio Tinto Stadium in the club’s regular season finale on Saturday. We’ll eschew taking a look at that game, however, in favor of looking ahead to the Claret-and-Cobalt’s Western Conference Semifinal series against Seattle Sounders FC.

The series – a rematch of last year’s Western Conference Semi – begins with the first leg on Friday night at Seattle. The return leg will be held at Rio Tinto Stadium on Thursday, Nov. 8.

Here are a few interesting numbers ahead of the playoff matchup:

3-2

Real Salt Lake’s margin of victory over Seattle in last year’s Western Conference Semifinal. RSL beat Seattle 3-0 at Rio Tinto Stadium in the first leg of that series and advanced to the Conference Final by limiting Sounders FC to a 2-0 win at CenturyLink Field in the second leg.  

0-3

Seattle’s record in MLS Cup Playoffs series since the team joined the league in 2009.

5

The difference in the number of matches Seattle has played across all competitions this year (44, including one friendly) and the number of matches RSL has played across all competitions this year (39). According to a recent Forbes study, when all other factors are equal – which, it should be noted, isn’t necessarily the case with RSL and Seattle – a team that has played five more matches than its opponent entering a two-legged playoff series has about a five percent chance of winning said series. That's certainly a good omen for the Claret-and-Cobalt. 

1-0-2

RSL’s record against Seattle in 2012. The Claret-and-Cobalt beat Sounders FC 1-0 at CenturyLink Field on May 12 and played the Cascadia club to a scoreless draw on both July 4 at Rio Tinto Stadium and Oct. 17 in the Pacific Northwest.

0

The number of goals RSL conceded in three games against Seattle this year.

1

The number of goals RSL scored in three games against Seattle this year.

2-2-2

Real Salt Lake’s all-time record when playing Sounders FC at CenturyLink Field. The Claret-and-Cobalt – which won MLS Cup 2009 at the stadium – has a 1.4 points per game average against Seattle at the stadium, the second-highest such average of all MLS teams.