2018 MLS Cup Playoffs
The 2018 MLS Cup Playoffs (branded as the 2018 Audi MLS Cup Playoffs for sponsorship reasons) began on October 31 and ended on December 8 with MLS Cup 2018, the 23rd league championship match for MLS. This was the 23rd version of the MLS Cup Playoffs, the tournament culminating the Major League Soccer regular season. Twelve teams, the top six of each conference, competed in the MLS Cup Playoffs.
|Defending champions||Toronto FC|
(did not qualify)
|Champions||Atlanta United FC (1st title)|
|Goals scored||52 (3.06 per match)|
|Top goal scorer(s)|| Josef Martínez|
(4 goals each)
The first round of each conference had the third-seeded team hosting the sixth seed while the fourth-seed hosted the fifth seed in a single match to determine who advanced to the Conference Semifinals. In the Conference Semifinals, the top seed played the lowest remaining seed while the second played the next-lowest. The winners advanced to the Conference Finals. Both the Conference Semifinals and Conference Finals were played as a two-legged aggregate series. The winners advanced to the MLS Cup, a single match hosted by the participant with the better regular season record which was played at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.
The top six teams from each conference advanced to the MLS Cup playoffs.
|Knockout Round||Conference Semifinals||Conference Finals||MLS Cup|
|10/31 – Bronx, New York|
|E3||New York City FC||3|
|E3||New York City FC||0||1||1|
|E2||Atlanta United FC||1||3||4|
|11/1 – Washington, D.C.||E2||Atlanta United FC||3||0||3|
|E1||New York Red Bulls||0||1||1|
|E4||D.C. United||2 (2)|
|E5||Columbus Crew (p)||2 (3)||December 8 – Atlanta, Georgia|
|E1||New York Red Bulls||0||3||3|
|10/31 – Frisco, Texas||E2||Atlanta United FC||2|
|W5||Portland Timbers (p)||2||2||4 (4)|
|W2||Seattle Sounders FC||1||3||4 (2)|
|11/1 – Los Angeles, California||W5||Portland Timbers||0||3||3|
|W1||Sporting Kansas City||0||2||2|
|W3||Los Angeles FC||2|
|W6||Real Salt Lake||1||2||3|
|W6||Real Salt Lake||3|
|W1||Sporting Kansas City||1||4||5|
|Team 1||Score||Team 2|
|New York City FC (E3)||3–1||Philadelphia Union (E6)|
|D.C. United (E4)||2–2
|Columbus Crew (E5)|
|Los Angeles FC (W3)||2–3||Real Salt Lake (W6)|
|FC Dallas (W4)||1–2||Portland Timbers (W5)|
|FC Dallas||1–2||Portland Timbers|
|New York City FC||3–1||Philadelphia Union|
|D.C. United||2–2 (a.e.t.)||Columbus Crew|
|Team 1||Agg.||Team 2||1st leg||2nd leg|
|Columbus Crew (E5)||1–3||New York Red Bulls (E1)||1–0||0–3|
|New York City FC (E3)||1–4||Atlanta United FC (E2)||0–1||1–3|
|Real Salt Lake (W6)||3–5||Sporting Kansas City (W1)||1–1||2–4|
|Portland Timbers (W5)||4–4
|Seattle Sounders FC (W2)||2–1||2–3 (a.e.t.)|
|Columbus Crew||1–0||New York Red Bulls|
|New York Red Bulls||3–0||Columbus Crew|
New York Red Bulls win 3–1 on aggregate.
|New York City FC||0–1||Atlanta United FC|
|Atlanta United FC||3–1||New York City FC|
Atlanta United win 4–1 on aggregate.
|Portland Timbers||2–1||Seattle Sounders FC|
|Seattle Sounders FC||3–2 (a.e.t.)||Portland Timbers|
- Tied 4–4 on aggregate. Portland Timbers win 4–2 on penalties.
|Real Salt Lake||1–1||Sporting Kansas City|
|Sporting Kansas City||4–2||Real Salt Lake|
- Sporting Kansas City win 5–3 on aggregate.
|Team 1||Agg.||Team 2||1st leg||2nd leg|
|Atlanta United FC (E2)||3–1||New York Red Bulls (E1)||3–0||0–1|
|Portland Timbers (W5)||3–2||Sporting Kansas City (W1)||0–0||3–2|
|Atlanta United FC||3–0||New York Red Bulls|
|New York Red Bulls||1–0||Atlanta United FC|
Atlanta United win 3–1 on aggregate.
|Portland Timbers||0–0||Sporting Kansas City|
|Sporting Kansas City||2–3||Portland Timbers|
Portland Timbers win 3–2 on aggregate.
- As of December 8, 2018
MLS Cup Playoffs Best XIEdit
|2018||Jeff Attinella, Portland|| Aaron Long, Red Bulls
Matt Besler, Kansas City
Leandro González Pírez, Atlanta
Franco Escobar, Atlanta
| Sebastián Blanco, Portland
Miguel Almirón, Atlanta
Diego Chará, Portland
Diego Valeri, Portland
| Josef Martínez, Atlanta|
Johnny Russell, Kansas City
- "Audi 2018 MLS Cup Playoffs schedule revealed, final to be played on Dec. 8". mlssoccer.com. Major League Soccer. September 8, 2018. Retrieved October 21, 2018.
- Baer, Benjamin (November 11, 2018). "Red Bull Arena or Mercedes-Benz Stadium to host 2018 MLS Cup". MLSsoccer.com. Retrieved November 12, 2018.
- "Playoffs Top Scorers". Major League Soccer.
- Boehm, Charles (December 11, 2018). "Team of the Audi 2018 MLS Cup Playoffs: Who made the postseason Best XI?". MLSSoccer.com. Retrieved December 12, 2018.