The Vancouver Whitecaps and D.C. United were forced to share the spoils after their interconference, cross-country showdown ended in a scoreless draw Saturday night at BC Place.
The game also marked the continued offensive futility for the Whitecaps, who have not scored in their last four games to stretch their goal-less streak to 411 minutes.
Now winless in four games – two draws and two losses – Vancouver (7-6-13, 34 points) move level with the Portland Timbers for the fifth and final MLS Cup Playoff spot in the Western Conference pending Portland’s game Sunday against the San Jose Earthquakes.
Eastern Conference leading D.C. (14-8-5; 47 points) increased their lead over Sporting KC to five points.
Vancouver made the early running and took the game to D.C..
Darren Mattocks had two attempts to give the Whitecaps the lead from a 12th-minute cross into the six yard box, but blasted over on an open look at the goal.
Vancouver kept pushing, and Kendall Waston was an inch away from getting his head on a Pedro Morales free kick just past the half hour mark.
D.C. responded with a long-range Fabian Espindola shot that David Ousted had to tip over, before the same player was played in clear in front of goal but fired over from the edge of the six yard box.
Mattocks had a couple of chances for the Whitecaps as the half came to a close, but neither team could find the breakthrough and they went in level.
The frantic end to the first half wasn’t a harbinger of things to come as the second turned into a cagey affair with neither side creating many opportunities.
Left back Jordan Harvey came closest for Vancouver with a great run and flashing header at the near post right after halftime. It took until six minutes remaining before the home side threatened again, when Kekuta Manneh sent a dangerous ball across goal but Mattocks couldn't connect.
This Wednesday, D.C. United faces the New York Red Bulls just 11 days after the sides' last meeting.