Minnesota United and host D.C. United, the doppelgangers of Major League Soccer, meet in a match that has playoff implications for each club.
Not only are Minnesota (10-8-7, 37 points) and D.C. (11-11-4, 37 points) equal in points, they are sixth in their respective conferences heading into the clash in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday.
A win for either could mean a significant bump in their bid to earn one of the seven postseason spots in each conference.
Minnesota, which has won two straight and three of five, is a point back of the Los Angeles Galaxy and three points off fourth-place Portland in the Western Conference. D.C. trails Philadelphia and Orlando City by a point and sits two points behind third-place New York City in the Eastern Conference.
D.C. coach Hernan Losada said his team, 3-1-1 in the past five games, is peaking with eight matches remaining.
"It's a beautiful group to work with, I have to say," he said. "Very good personalities, good guys who are willing to give it all and get better. They are their own limits. They will decide how far they go this season."
In its past two matches, Minnesota has home victories against the Galaxy (3-0) and Houston (2-0).
"The last two games there have been really good starts," Minnesota midfielder Ethan Finlay said. "We've gotten on the board and we've been on the front foot. That's no different now when we go on the road."
After the game Wednesday, the Loons play at FC Dallas on Saturday. Minnesota is 2-5-5 on the road, where it has been outscored 22-12.
D.C. is 9-3-0 at home with a 15-goal advantage (25-10).
"I think we entertain the people once again, and at the same time, we are doing what we need to do," Losada said of a 4-2 victory against Cincinnati on Saturday. "That's winning our home games and being strong."
--Field Level Media