Chivas USA has been around four seasons now and they've had a decent time in MLS, except for that lousy 2005 season of course. The club has made the playoffs three consecutive seasons, which is a feat on its own.
But now, the pressure will be turned up quite a bit. Chivas has been successful in some respects but in others, they've done little. Success in the playoffs, for example, falls under the having-done-little part of their history.
Playoff success is a must this season. This is the year Chivas must get out of the first round. If the team goes out in the first round again, it will be inexcusable plain and simple. Now, had the club gotten into the playoffs the way New York did, perhaps another early exit would be understandable. But Chivas finished with the fifth-best record in MLS and are the higher seed in their playoff series.
Perhaps as an exclamation to the need to win, Chivas is going up against Real Salt Lake. Should Chivas lose to fellow '05 expansion side RSL, it would be insult to injury. After all, RSL has done virtually nothing in their time in MLS. This season was far and away RSL's most successful season.
Chivas has the tools to get it done but whatever happens in the postseason, anything short of reaching the conference final will be a major disappointment, a complete and utter failure.