The conference semifinal stage of the MLS Cup Playoffs begins on Sunday with four first-leg contests between the eight remaining sides in the competition.
New York Red Bulls and New York City FC will head to Canada to face Montreal Impact and Toronto FC respectively in the Eastern Conference.
FC Dallas visit the Seattle Sounders and the L.A. Galaxy host the Colorado Rapids in the two Western Conference showdowns on Sunday.
Below we took a look at each of the individual matchups and what each team needs to do to take an upper hand into the second leg.
New York Red Bulls at Montreal Impact
Plenty of people will point to the other Eastern Conference semifinal as the one with the most attacking firepower, but the matchup between the Red Bulls and Impact carries three of the front-runners for the Most Valuable Player award.
Bradley Wright-Phillips earned his second MLS Golden Boot in three years with 24 regular-season goals, while teammate Sacha Kljestan led the league in assists, with 19.
The pair of Red Bulls playmakers are surrounded by plenty of experience with Dax McCarty, Felipe and Mike Grella a part of the midfield setup. Academy product Alex Muyl may be the most impressive player in the supporting cast. Muyl has easily fit into the attack since Lloyd Sam was traded to D.C. United in July.
The Red Bulls back line may not get the attention the attack does, but the four-man unit has been sturdy during the club's 16-game unbeaten run. Goalkeeper Luis Robles quietly led the league in shutouts, with 11 during the regular season, and Aurelien Collin is coming off one of his best matches of the season, against the Philadelphia Union.
All the talk of the talent on the pitch will be overshadowed by the franchise's continued failure to win MLS Cup. The Red Bulls have had plenty of talented squads in club history, but none of them have been able to secure the elusive trophy.
Montreal made a massive statement on Thursday in the knockout round with a 4-2 thumping of the red-hot D.C. United. Matteo Mancosu, who scored twice in the win over United, has put in some terrific work at the forward position as the Didier Drogba situation gets more bleak by the day.
Most of the Red Bulls' defensive attention will be cast upon Ignacio Piatti, who scored 17 goals and assisted on six more in the regular season. The Argentinian has a pair of goals and an assist in three matches against the Red Bulls in 2016.
Belgian center-back Laurent Ciman will be the main marker of Wright-Phillips. If he can impose his physical presence against the Englishman, the Red Bulls may struggle to test Evan Bush on a consistent basis.
New York City FC at Toronto FC
David Villa, Frank Lampard, Andrea Pirlo, Sebastian Giovinco, Jozy Altidore and Michael Bradley will all share the pitch in a playoff series that starts at BMO Field.
Second-seeded New York City FC, led by 23-goal scorer Villa, visit No. 3 Toronto, powered by the duo of Giovinco and Altidore, in what could be the most entertaining series of the postseason.
We don't say that just because of the attacking talent expected to be on the pitch. Both clubs have defenses that are susceptible to mistakes, and with pressure at an all-time high, we're expecting at least one at BMO Field.
NYCFC's young stars and world-class veterans have traveled well in 2016, putting together a 7-7-3 road record. Villa and rookie Jack Harrison should be able to create a good amount of chances, but Patrick Vieira's men will only go as far as their defense, which let in 57 in 34 matches, takes them
Toronto benefited from a few lapses at the back in Wednesday's Eastern Conference knockout-round win over Philadelphia. Altidore comes into the match in the form of his life, and not just because he's lighting the net on fire. The American's work on the ball near midfield to build up possession has been superb as well.
Giovinco will benefit from that play, as he'll be able to use his speed to link up with Altidore's balls from the middle. The Italian is also one of the best free-kick takers in the league, and he came close to scoring from a set piece on Wednesday. If he gets behind the NYCFC defense, Giovinco should be able to earn a few free-kick opportunities.
Given NYCFC's ability in the final third, TFC manager Greg Vanney may move away from the 3-5-2 he used on Wednesday. The success of any formation used by the Reds will be determined by Bradley, Jonathan Osorio and Armando Cooper in midfield. The central trio was one of the top units in MLS at the end of the regular season.
Colorado Rapids at LA Galaxy
The Western Conference semifinal between the Colorado Rapids and L.A. Galaxy presents a stark contrast in personnel, and that may turn this matchup into the must-see tie of the round.
We all know what the LA Galaxy are about. Landon Donovan, Giovani dos Santos and Robbie Keane are three of the most talented players in the league, and manager Bruce Arena always gets one unexpected player to break out during the postseason.
Emmanuel Boateng was that man on Wednesday, as he bagged a brace against Real Salt Lake, but the midfielder's only strikes in 2016 have come against the Claret and Cobalt.
If Boateng is able to replicate his production on the wing on Sunday, the Galaxy should be able to stretch the Rapids thin. As if that weren't enough to impress you, Donovan was one of the top defenders for the Galaxy on Wednesday. The two-way work rate of the American legend will be key when Colorado attempts to break forward.
Of course, all of the attacking firepower in the L.A. lineup can be silenced by the best defensive team in the league. Pablo Mastroeni's side conceded just 32 times in their chase for the Supporters' Shield, which came up two points short.
Central midfielders Sam Cronin and Michael Azira don't get the love they deserve, but they have the capability to shut down the most dangerous players in the league. If Cronin and Azira can congest the middle, the Galaxy would have to rely on their speed and crossing from the wings.
Colorado center-back Axel Sjoberg is a threat in the air on both sides of the pitch, and he should be able to hold the Galaxy at bay if they are forced to launch cross after cross. One player he'll have to watch out for the in the box is opposing center-back Jelle Van Damme, who crossed midfield on numerous occasions versus RSL.
Shkelzen Gashi, Kevin Doyle and Sebastien Le Toux all carry big-game experience in attack, and each one of them is capable of bagging in an away goal. Colorado could only look for one goal at StubHub Center since they are the experts of the 1-0 victory.
On top of all that, Jermaine Jones could make a cameo for the Rapids. The United States international returned to the pitch in the club's regular-season finale against Houston Dynamo.
FC Dallas at Seattle Sounders
FC Dallas' quest for the treble begins inside a raucous CenturyLink Field on Sunday.
Oscar Pareja's men have already captured the U.S. Open Cup and Supporters' Shield, but the chase for postseason success will be their most difficult journey of the season.
FC Dallas have survived the transfer of Fabian Castillo and the season-ending injury to Mauro Diaz so far, but one has to wonder where the consistent attacking threat will come from in the postseason.
If the top seed in the Western Conference can figure that out, they'll be the favorites to win it all. But until then, there will be a heavy reliance on the Matt Hedges and Walker Zimmerman-led defense to win matches. Earning a clean sheet in Seattle would be huge, but conceding once shouldn't hurt FC Dallas too much.
Seattle owns a good amount of momentum heading into Sunday's contest. The Sounders used Nelson Valdez's first goal of 2016 to advance past Sporting Kansas City on Thursday.
The Sounders put two shots on goal in the last meeting between the clubs on October 16. The 2-1 defeat is the only time the Sounders have lost since September began.
Jordan Morris and Nicolas Lodeiro must be better in order to break down the Dallas back line. However, the biggest key to Seattle's success on Sunday will be keeping Osvaldo Alonso on the field, with some believing the Cuban should've been sent off against Sporting Kansas City in the knockout round.
As long as Alonso controls his physical play and doesn't earn a spot in the referee's book, the Sounders should be able to disrupt Dallas' rhythm for 90 minutes.
Joe Tansey covers MLS for Bleacher Report. You can follow him on Twitter, @JTansey90.