MLS review - Inter Miami's slump continues while El Trafico ends in disappointing draw

The MLS play-offs are now looking a distant possibility for Phil Neville's side while LA Galaxy will be the marginally happier club following their 1-1 draw against local rivals LAFC.

The MLS kicked off October with a full slate of games over the weekend and the league will not pause next week for the international break.

Most teams will have players leave for the break, which will test the depths of the benches just as it did in July and September.

The weekend action saw more movement among the play-off contenders and a couple of rivalry games as well.

With a convincing win on Sunday night, the Seattle Sounders went back on top of the Western Conference and they also have a game in hand over Sporting KC. Their home win over Colorado Rapids left the visitors in third, six points behind.

Inter Miami shutout again

The play-off dreams are beginning to fade for Phil Neville and his Inter Miami squad. The Herons went across the country on Sunday and fell 1-0 to the Portland Timbers, with the goal coming in the final 10 minutes. The defeat leaves Miami in 11th place with 32 points, eight away from the final play-off spot.

Inter Miami had a full line-up for Sunday's game but couldn't get a goal through Gonzalo Higuain, Robbie Robinson and Rodolfo Pizarro. They did win the possession battle and had five shots on goal but were lucky not to go down early in the second half as Portland had a goal disallowed for offside.

Their defending from a corner kick let the Herons down in the 83rd minute. They weren't ready for a quick corner and no one marked Jaroslaw Niezgoda in the middle of the box, with his free header proving to be the winner.

Jaroslaw Niezgoda Portland Timbers
Jaroslaw Niezgoda scored the winner for the Portland Timbers

With just seven games to play, the Herons have to jump over four teams to make the post-season.

Next weekend they head to New York for a game against the Red Bulls, who are in ninth place with 34 points. Planet Sport Bet has Miami at 10/3 to win with the Red Bulls at 4/6 and a draw at 11/4.

El Trafico ends in another draw

Both LA Galaxy and LAFC were desperate for a win on Sunday to solidify their play-off hopes. The 1-1 draw benefits the Galaxy more as they are already in the top seven, but neither team will be overly happy with the result at Dignity Health Sports Park.

Mamadou Fall put LAFC on top with a header in the 11th minute and Samuel Grandsir answered seven minutes later for the Galaxy. The goal was Fall's third this season, all coming off set pieces, and he was massive in defending Chicharito all game long.

On the day the Galaxy unveiled a statue to legendary team player Landon Donovan, they couldn't find the game-winner. However, Nick DePuy headed off the crossbar and Sebastian Lletget hit the post.

It has been a rather disappointing season for both of the Los Angeles teams. Two of their three meetings ended in draws while the Galaxy won the first meeting of the campaign. Injuries to Chicharito and Carlos Vela hampered both teams this year as did mid-season slumps and player transfers.

The Galaxy are tied on points with Real Salt Lake for fifth place but trail in the tie-break. Meanwhile, LAFC are in ninth place, four points out of a play-off spot and have next weekend off as they have already played one game more than the two teams in front of them in the standings.

READ MORE: MLS review: LA Galaxy desperate to hold on to play-off spot, while Nani slips up for Orlando

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