New England Soccer Today

MLS Rankings: Week 17

Every week the New England Soccer Today crew will look beyond the standings to rank each of the 18 Major League Soccer (MLS) teams. This week Brian O’Connell and Sean Donahue contributed rankings. Comments are followed by the ranker’s name and the rank they gave that team.

1. (+1) Los Angeles Galaxy (10-2-9, 39 points)
Take a 2-1 win over Chicago and extend unbeaten streak to 12. OK, so maybe it’s time to give credit where credit is due. My vote for the top spot in the rankings. (Brian – 1) … Hardly dominating, but the Galaxy keep finding ways to win and stay atop the table. (Sean – 1)

T2. (-1) FC Dallas (10-5-4, 34 points)
Loss to Salt Lake cools FCD after a three-game winning streak. But, a favorable matchup against D.C. should put Dallas back in the driver’s seat. (Brian – 2) … Hit a bump versus Salt Lake and could be overtaken by Real if they don’t have a quick recovery this weekend. (Sean – 3)

T2. (+1) Seattle Sounders (9-4-8, 35 points)
Fredy Montero scores a brace in Seattle’s 3-2 comeback victory and climb their way into second place in the west. (Brian – 3) … Impressive win over Portland and Seattle haven’t lost since May in any competition. (Sean – 2)

4. Real Salt Lake (8-3-6, 30 points)
Impressive 2-0 win over Dallas may signal that Salt Lake’s ready to resume its early season run. Solid performance all around against a quality club like Dallas. (Brian – 4) … Over a month since their last loss in league play and Salt Lake seem to be finally returning to form. (Sean – 4)

5. (+2) Philadelphia Union (7-4-7, 28 points)
0-0 draw to San Jose is another wasted opportunity gone by as Philly concedes a share of the top spot in the east. (Brian – 6) Back-to-back road draws for the Union as they set the pace at the top of the Eastern Conference. (Sean – 5)

6. (-1) Sporting Kansas City (5-6-7, 22 points)
Make it undefeated in their last 10 with draws to Colorado and Chivas USA. Draws are nice, but they can’t keep settling for single points. (Brian – 5) … Suddenly Kansas City doesn’t seem so formidable at home. (Sean – 7)

7. (+1) Columbus Crew (7-5-6, 27 points)
Win over Vancouver puts the Crew only a single point back of the Union and Red Bulls for first place. (Brian – 7) … Road win at Vancouver has the Crew back on their way towards the top of the Eastern Conference standings. (Sean – 6)

8. (-2) New York Red Bulls (6-4-10, 28 points)
Score an epic 5-0 win over Toronto, then follow it up with a 1-0 fail whale to D.C. Any takers for first place in the east? Anybody? (Brian – 8 ) … Hard to give them too much credit for beating up on an awful Toronto side, especially when followed with a home loss to D.C. Solving their goalkeeper problems with Frank Rost should help a bit. (Sean – 8 )

9. (+1) D.C. United (5-5-7, 22 points)
Upset the Red Bulls with a dagger from former Red Bull Dwayne DeRosario. Don’t look now, but they’re on a four-game unbeaten streak. (Brian – 9) … Huge road win at New York shows D.C. can compete with anyone in the weak East. (Sean – 9)

T10. (+1) Colorado Rapids (6-5-9, 27 points)
Get their first victory in nearly a month against Vancouver thanks to a suddenly-hot Conor Casey. If they could only string a few more of these victories together… (Brian – 12) … Rapids pick up a much needed victory to stop their slide, but will it lead to more? (Sean 10)

T10. (+2) Houston Dynamo (5-6-8, 23 points)
Hand Toronto its second shutout of the week with a 2-0 win on Saturday. OK, so maybe it was easy pickings, but every win matters in the mediocre Eastern Conference. (Brian – 11) … Won’t get any credit from me for a home win over Toronto. (Sean – 11)

T10. (-2) San Jose Earthquakes (5-6-7, 22 points)
Shut out in back to back matches, the Quakes need to figure out a way to get more production up top if they want to hang with the big boys in the west. (Brian – 10) … Need to do better at home. The slide continues for the ‘Quakes. (Sean – 12)

13. Chivas USA (5-7-7, 22 points)
Offense awakens against San Jose in 2-0 win; yet, they’re attacking problems are far from over. Perhaps the transfer window will bring an attacking player? (Brian – 13) … Three games unbeaten deserves some credit from the struggling Los Angeles-based club.

14. (-1) Chicago Fire (2-5-12, 18 points)
Fall to the Galaxy, but have a favorable matchup against Portland this week. Other than that, it looks like it’s going to be a long summer in Chi-town. (Brian – 14) … Again, it’s the struggles of the teams below them that keep Chicago off the bottom of the rankings. (Sean – 14)

15. Portland Timbers (5-9-3, 18 points)
Come close to beating rival Seattle, but ends in another disappointing loss.  On the plus side, Darlington Nagbe was profiled on SportCenter for his golazo, so it’s not all bad in Rose City. (Brian -15)

T16. New England Revolution (3-8-7, 16 points)
Idle this week, and will need the rest with first-place Philly in town. That being said, there’s no question the Revs will need to use the transfer window to get some attacking players before it’s too late. (Brian – 17) … A week off brings more bad news as the team releases veteran left back Didier Domi (Sean – 16)

T16. Vancouver Whitecaps (2-10-8, 14 points)
Losses to Columbus and Colorado and the Whitecaps fall to the basement, with little hope of climbing out before the season’s over. (Brian – 16) … Fourth loss in a row for Vancouver and things aren’t looking good north of the border. (Sean – 17)

18. Toronto FC (3-9-9, 18 points)
Lose by a combined score of 7-0 this week. Sorry guys, that negative-19 goal differential just ain’t cutting it. (Brian – 18) … Those new signings can’t come soon enough… (Sean – 18)

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