Jake died from the sheer exuberance of RSL staying in first place this week, so Patrick was left to do the power rankings. He’s awesome, so he killed it.
1. Real Salt Lake (Last Week: 1, D 2-2 at PHI, Next: v POR)
– Patrick: The only reason they held the top spot was because the teams below them did nothing to overtake the spot. RSL put in a good performance in Philadelphia but once again dropped points in a game they should have the full 3. A test against Portland, a team very much on the down-swing, should show us where this team stands. Can’t drop points like that at home.
2. Sporting Kansas City (Last Week: 3, BYE, Next: v MTL)
– Patrick: By virtue of Dallas slipping up and the other teams not putting in spectacular performances, these guys rise up a spot. Without Ike Opara, it’ll be interesting to see how this team handles a more congested schedule. Not having depth in defense could ruin them as they aren’t known for their offensive prowess.
3. LA Galaxy (Last Week: 5, W 1-0 v VAN, Next: at VAN)
– Patrick: It wasn’t the most convincing of wins over the weekend but it was very much a Bruce Arena win. Do enough to keep the other team off the board and hit them with a moment of brilliance from your expensive players. With a return leg against Vancouver this weekend, it’ll be interesting to see if they approach the game any differently. Vancouver is a very different side at home.
4. Colorado Rapids (Last Week: 9, W 1-0 at TFC, Next: v SJ)
– Patrick: Well would you look at that, Colorado is on a bit of a hot streak. To be fair, they caught Toronto at exactly the perfect moment as none of the names on the field (Julio Cesar was in goal). Also, I think TFC was having flashbacks to their trip to the RioT with the kits Colorado wore. Regardless, a road win is a big thing and that’s 2 big ones for Colorado this year in Canada.
5. FC Dallas (Last Week: 2, L 2-3 v SEA, Next: v TFC)
– Patrick: The Clint Dempsey show came to Dallas and caught FCD by surprise. If the ref hands out the proper second yellow to Neagle in this one Dallas likely finds at least a point but that is how the game goes sometimes. Still, these guys are a good team and have found a really special player in Diaz. Are they bound to their typical summer/end of season slump? Only time will tell.
6. Toronto FC (Last Week: 4, L 0-1 v COL, Next at FCD)
– Patrick: These guys should fall further than this but it’s hard to put them below other teams on this list. They are a very talented team when they have the few key pieces (Bradley the most among them). Still, they didn’t look utterly lost without those players. They were unlucky to not find the goal against Colorado at least once. I’ll hold off on dropping this team much for now. A game at Dallas this weekend is a big test for them.
7. Columbus Crew (Last Week: 6, D 1-1 at SJ, Next v DCU)
– Patrick: They probably shouldn’t drop for picking up a point on the road but I still can’t get the TFC result out of my mind. This team was looking so good and then boom, they had no creativity. Higuain is a very good player to build through, but they seem to be forcing it now. Someone else needs to step up for Columbus to be a true threat.
8. Seattle Sounders (Last Week: 13, W 3-2 at FCD, Next at CHV)
– Patrick: The goals just keep coming – on both sides of the ball. This team reminds me of the LA Galaxy team right after Beckham came to the league. They have quite a bit of offensive talent but their defense is in shambles. You won’t go far in this league thinking you can just out score teams. Sure, Dempsey has caught form over the last 2 games, but they’ve also given up 6 goals. That’s not a trend that can continue if these guys are going to be for real.
9. Philadelphia Union (Last Week: 10, D 2-2 v RSL, Next: at NY & v HOU)
– Patrick: They are the most unpredictable team in the league. The move of trading Jack Mac should be proof enough. I think they are good enough to find the playoffs this year if they can find at least some form of consistency. Fighting to salvage points at the end of the game isn’t the best way to go, though. Still, respect to them for the fight they put up with the perceived top dogs of the league.
10. New England Revolution (Last Week: W 2-0 v HOU, Next: at CHI)
– Patrick: It was far from convincing but they did get a win against a team that, just a few weeks ago, was perceived to be one of the best in the league. Not sure which team this result speaks more to but New England deserves some credit for keeping the clean sheet against a talented Houston offense. I doubt the Revs are for real this year, especially without their all-star defender, but they’re not going to suck it up either.
11. Vancouver Whitecaps (Last Week: 7, L 0-1 at LA, Next v LA)
– Patrick: They were undone by one really good cross in a rather sloppy game by both teams. I’m interested to see how they respond this weekend with the rematch. On their own field, they should be able to push the envelope a bit more. These guys, like Houston, seem to have fooled us with their early home success.
12. Chivas USA (Last Week: 12, D 1-1 at POR, Next: v SEA)
– Patrick: So this team is weird. A draw in Portland is something that, last season, you could really hang your hat on. This year it doesn’t seem like quite the accomplishment but it does speak a bit to this Chivas team. Some games they look unorganized and simple to beat. Others, they look like a team that is just a player away from being a force in the league. Torres is a special player up top for them and doesn’t need a second opportunity to make you pay. That’ll keep getting them points this year.
13. Houston Dynamo (Last Week: 8, L 0-2 at NE, Next: at PHI)
– Patrick: These guys have lost the script. They’re in a bit of a tailspin after a really strong start and we’re only 6 weeks in. That is both good and bad news for them. Good in that there is plenty of time to recover. Bad in that they have that much more time to struggle. Losing Garcia to the World Cup will kill this team. How they survive the summer is beyond me.
14. New York Red Bulls (Last Week: 11, L 0-1 at DCU, Next: v PHI)
– Patrick: The age of this team is starting to show. Further, they just don’t have anything super creative going for them. Without Henry playing lights out their offense relies on Jonny Steele. No offense to the former RSL man, but that isn’t going to cut it for a defending Supporters Shield winner. These guys need a change fast – now it simply isn’t working.
15. Portland Timbers (Last Week: 14, D 1-1 v CHV, Next: at RSL)
– Patrick: Did anybody see this coming? We’re 6 weeks into the season and Portland still hasn’t won a game. They seem to have kept the trend of drawing more games than anything, but don’t have the ability to turn those other results to wins now. Porter, I feel, tinkered too much with things in the offseason. Chemistry is a massive thing and he ruined what his team had.
16. San Jose ‘Quakes (Last Week: 16, D 1-1 v CLB, Next: at COL)
– Patrick: They didn’t look all that great against Columbus. In fact, that game was easily one of the most boring of the weekend. I don’t think what we saw in Mexico City was a sign of things to come. This team’s identity – hit the ball in to the box and let the bash brothers go at it – isn’t going to be very successful this year it looks. I’m happy as I despise the play.
17. DC United (Last Week: 18, W 1-0 v NY, Next: v NE)
– Patrick: Another win for DC?! These guys are on a winning streak. Yes, a WINNING streak. Credit to Olsen for getting just enough out of his guys to get these two wins. Maybe they can build on them and turn the season into something salvageable? I don’t think they are a legitimate threat by any means, but they aren’t going to be so especially bad this year.
18: Chicago Fire (Last Week: 17, D 1-1 at MTL, Next: v NE)
– Patrick: Jeff Larentowicz isn’t the kind of player you can build a team around. The guy isn’t a bad player in a role position but that isn’t what Chicago is asking of him. They have no midfield identity and are paying the prices for it. You can’t get away with a sub-par midfield in modern-day soccer, it’s just not possible. They need someone new in the middle of the pitch desperately.
19. Montreal Impact (Last Week: 19, D 1-1 v CHI, Next: at SKC)
– Patrick: This team is bad. Without Felipe playing lights out they, like Chicago, just don’t have a midfield to build on. Further, their center of defense is not something to be proud of. They have a few players that they are hoping can get them through games and it isn’t going to work. They need a roster overhaul, I think. I would move a lot of players with value now to stock up on allocation money.