Atlanta United and the New York Red Bulls have already clinched the top two spots in the Eastern Conference and byes in the Knockout Round.
For much of the season, NYCFC was challenging Atlanta and the Red Bulls for the top spot but it faded in the last two months. Wednesday's win was NYCFC's first since August and just its second in the last 10 games.
NYCFC coach Domenec Torrent said it was a relief to get three points after a six-game winless streak.
“Of course, it's very important for us to win the game for our fans, for our players," he said "because you have more confidence when you are able to win the game."
He was also pleased about the turnaround in the second half.
"In the first 30 minutes," Torrent added, "we didn't play fast, we played very slowly when we had the ball. We improved a lot in the second half. Especially in the first half, we defended deep and in the second half we were compact and we were able to recover many balls, and create many chances.”
Chicago out. With the loss, Chicago became the first Eastern Conference team to be eliminated from the playoffs -- the fifth time in six years it failed to reach the postseason.