New England Soccer Today

MLS Rankings: Week 9

Every week the New England Soccer Today crew will look beyond the standings to rank each of the 19 Major League Soccer (MLS) teams. This week Sean Donahue and Ryan Lanigan contributed rankings. Comments are followed by the ranker’s name and the rank they gave that team.

T1. (+1) SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES (7-2-1, 22 points)
Tough last second loss in Vancouver in what was a fairly even match. Can’t take too much away from the ‘Quakes since Vancouver’s been strong at home this season. (Sean – 2) … Yes they lost, but that goal was somewhat controversial given the time it happened. (Ryan – 1)

T1. (+2) SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC (6-1-1, 19 points)
Four wins in a row now for Seattle. What was that about a slow start? (Sean – 1) … Fredy Montero has found the back of the net finally, and he’s done so in tremendous fashion. Should be a good game against RSL this week. (Ryan – 2)

3. (-2) SPORTING KANSAS CITY (7-2-0, 21 points)
Sure they controlled most of the match, but losing their second in a row and falling 2-0 at home to expansion Montreal shows Kansas City may not be so perfect. (Sean – 3) … Absolutely shocking to see the past two results for a team that started so hot. I’m not sure if it’s a good thing or a bad thing to be Chicago. (Ryan – 3)

4. (-1) REAL SALT LAKE (7-3-1, 22 points)
Survived a back and forth affair with New England, including playing an extended period down a man, to grab a more difficult than expected three points. (Sean – 4) … Not the most impressive performance against New England and they are grateful to have Rimando in net. (Ryan – 4)

5. (+2) VANCOUVER WHITECAPS (5-2-2, 17 points)
Important win for Vancouver over San Jose shows they truly are a force to be reckoned with. (Sean – 5) … Revenge for them as they beat the team that handed them their first loss. It marks three wins in a row with a passive New England team on the horizon. (Ryan – 5)

6. (-1) D.C. UNITED (5-3-3, 18 points)
Toronto proved just what the doctor ordered for a quick recovery from a loss last week that interrupted their otherwise impressive form. (Sean – 6) … I always say a win’s a win. Beating Toronto is becoming routine for most teams but they still had to play the game to do it. (Ryan – 6)

T7.  (-1) HOUSTON DYNAMO (2-2-2, 8 points)
Big home opener at their new stadium coming up plus a winnable road game in New York on Wednesday and the Dynamo are in good shape despite their tough 7-game road trek to start the season. (Sean – 8 ) … They have a tough schedule this week but hopefully some home cooking will help them out. (Ryan – 7)

T7.  (+1) NEW YORK RED BULLS (5-3-1, 16 points)
Sure LA is struggling, but with New York missing Thierry Henry and other key players, while LA had their three DPs, a win at the Home Depot Center is quite an accomplishment. (Sean – 7) … Beating LA this year isn’t what it used to be but it’s still a result they needed to get without Henry. (Ryan – 8 )

9. (+1) COLORADO RAPIDS (5-5-0, 15 points)
2-0 win at Dallas is huge after the disappointment in New England. Getting Conor Casey back might help get them back on track. (Sean – 9) … They know they should have done better at New England and they proved so by doing well against Dallas.  (Ryan – 9)

10. (+6) MONTREAL IMPACT (3-5-2, 11 points)
Two wins in a row including winning in Kansas City last week and suddenly Montreal looks ready to make a run. (Sean – 10) … Don’t look now, but they are unbeaten in four of their last five and host a struggling Galaxy team this weekend. (Ryan – 10)

11. (+1) CHICAGO FIRE (3-2-2, 11 points)
The inconsistent Fire grab a win at Chivas, but still haven’t looked much like a playoff team despite their record. (Sean – 11) … They got the result they needed against Chivas but a dreadful schedule awaits them this week. (Ryan – 11)

12. (-1) LOS ANGELES GALAXY (3-5-1, 10 points)
Completely inexcusable to lose at home to a decimated Red Bulls team. Sure they have some injuries, but that’s not enough to explain why the Galaxy are as bad as they are right now. (Sean – 12) … Not sure what is wrong with this team rather than complacency. I blame Bruce Arena. (Ryan – 12)

T13. (+2) NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION (3-6-0, 9 points)
Solid victory against Colorado and then a strong performance against Salt Lake. Set pieces – both offensively and defensively – are inexcusably bad and the team’s Achilles’ heel at this point. (Sean – 14) … This is a little higher than most people will have them. But they did well to come back against Colorado and didn’t exactly play bad against RSL, a game they deserved a point. (Ryan – 13)

T13. (-4) FC DALLAS (3-4-3, 12 points)
Someone needs to teach this team some discipline. They aren’t good enough this year to cost themselves points with needless ejections. (Sean – 13) … Winless in their last four games isn’t a good thing when you have a game midweek against a hot Seattle team. (Ryan – 14)

15. (-1) PHILADELPHIA UNION (2-5-1, 7 points)
Talk about bringing in Raul makes sense. This team NEEDS goals. (Sean – 15) … After a quick glimpse of positive results, the Union has responded with two straight losses. (Ryan – 15)

16. CHIVAS USA (3-6-0, 9 points)
Three losses in a row and the bad news is Chivas remains at home this week where they are 0-5. )Sean – 16) … That one has to hurt. (Ryan – 16)

17. (-4) COLUMBUS CREW (2-4-2, 8 points)
What a disappointment the Crew has been. This usually steady team might be headed for their worst season in some time if they can’t turn things around. (Sean – 17) … They desperately needed to get a result from their game against Portland. They just signed Paul Birchall to give the midfield a boost. (Ryan – 17)

18. PORTLAND TIMBERS (2-5-2, 8 points)
I still can’t figure out what went so wrong for Portland, but maybe a bye week will help them figure it out. (Sean – 18) … Well if there was ever a time to recover their momentum from their win, it was in their game against Columbus…but they didn’t. (Ryan – 18)

19. TORONTO FC (0-8-0, 0 points)
On the plus side, there’s no MLS game for them to lose this week. (Sean – 19) … Death, taxes…and Toronto losing in 2012. (Ryan – 19)

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