July 07, 2011

MLS Power Rankings: Week 16



Ties, stalemates, draws, inconclusive matches, gridlock. Week 16 in MLS defined for you. Okay, fair enough their were a handful of wins, other than the ugly thrashing that New York inflicted on...who else?! Toronto. Also, Darlington Nagbe, Andy Najar? Some insane goals that will give Eric Hassli’s wunder volley against Seattle a run for its money for MLS Goal of the Year.


1. FC DALLAS

Last Week: 1
Result: W 2-0 vs. CLB
Last Five: W-L-W-W-W

FC Dallas has been invincible over the past few weeks, and Brek Shea has possibly propelled himself back into the USMNT spotlight come this winter. But, the best part about Dallas and their ascending of the standings? They're doing so without tying matches!

2. LOS ANGELES GALAXY

Last Week: 3
Result: T 0-0 vs. SEA
Last Five: T-T-W-T-T

Somewhere, a good 3,000 miles or so across the continental United States, Erik Soler is steaming with envy at the depth of the goalkeeping in LA.

3. SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC

Last Week: 2
Result: T 0-0 @ LA
Last Five: T-T-W-W-T

In an otherwise evenly fought match, the Sounders were halted cold by the likes of...Brian who? Peck, that is! Following Peck’s penalty save against Montero it seemed to halt their momentum that had been raging the past few weeks.

4. REAL SALT LAKE

Last Week: 4
Result: T 3-3 vs. NE
Last Five: T-T-T-W-T

One may casually look at this result and think it's worthy enough to dock Salt Lake a couple Power Ranking positions. However, one has to take into account the...rather surreal aspects of the match. Salt Lake played 87 minutes of the match without defender Nat Borchers, on well...a poor decision. The ejection led to a quick 1-0 lead for New England shortly before the Revs made it 2-0. And what happens? Salt Lake down a man dominates New England. Had the match been about 5 minutes longer we could have seen Salt Lake running away with the full three points, and more than Kries' stink eye.

5. SPORTING KANSAS CITY

Last Week: 7
Result: W 2-1 @ POR, T 1-1 vs. COL
Last Five: T-T-W-W-W

Perhaps the most impressive thing at Jeld-Wen, that was not Darlington Nagbe’s goal, had to come from the fact that the Wizards were able to tally three points on the road and steer ahead of United for a final wildcard spot. Strange as it sounds, a draw at home against Colorado might have loosened confidence.

6. COLUMBUS CREW

Last Week: 6
Result: L 0-2 @ FCD, W 1-0 @ VAN
Last Five: L-W-W-L-W

A solid Crew side should not be punished too severely for a loss against red-hot Dallas. Especially given the fact it was played in sold-out (shocking right?!) Pizza Hut Park. Their ability to rebound was tremendous as they handed the ‘Caps their second home loss of their maiden MLS campaign. With Philly drawing against D.C., leaves Columbus some more wiggle room for the top spot out East.

7. PHILADELPHIA UNION

Last Week: 5
Result: T 2-2 @ DC
Last Five: T-T-L-W-T

Conceding multiple goals in a match is unlike Philly, especially with the upgrade in the net. Even if they did enough to earn the road draw at D.C., they performed poor enough to deserve a loss. The virtue of an own goal, marred with poor defensive communication cost the Union a chance at the full three in D.C. and leaves questions with the back line.

8. NEW YORK RED BULLS

Last Week: 10
Result: T 2-2 @ SJ, W 5-0 vs. TOR
Last Five: T-L-T-T-W

Even if it was against Toronto, I doubt anyone was expecting the iffy-form New York side to tear this timid Toronto side apart, piece by piece. Thanks to the 5-0 routing, the sole thought of parity is stored into the back of minds until this weekend. And...thanks to the crossbar, Greg Sutton might just have some confidence against an upgraded D.C. United attack come Saturday.

9. SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES

Last Week: 9
Result: T 2-2 vs. NY, L 0-2 @ CHV
Last Five: W-W-T-T-L

After relinquishing what would have been a strange victory against New York, the ‘Quakes are blanked by the Goats. Whatever the reason for their sudden southward direction in form is not a good sign headed into mid-season. Needless to say, if the Quakes want to keep in the wildcard race for the MLS Cup Playoffs, they’ll need to regain their old form, and quick.

10. D.C. UNITED

Last Week: 8
Result: T 2-2 vs. PHI
Last Five: T-L-T-T-T

Nagbe's goal against Sporting has negated Andy Najar's wundergoal from 30 yards out, but it emphasizes United's upgraded attack. The young defense has to figure out how to finish matches. Once they do that, I have zero doubt that the Black-and-Red will be one of the top clubs in MLS next year.

11. HOUSTON DYNAMO

Last Week: 12
Result: T 0-0 @ COL
Last Five: L-W-L-T-T

These days, it's difficult to determine how much of a meriting accomplishment it truly is to beat the Rapids in DSG Park. The Dyanmo created little opportunities in the dull, scoreless draw at Colorado.

12. CHIVAS USA

Last Week: 14
Result: T 1-1 vs CHI, W 2-0 vs SJ
Last Five: L-T-L-T-W

Chivas’ inconsistency has brought out the joyous wonders of parity. Not only that, but the agonizing irritation of placing them in the Power Rankings. While a draw at home against Chicago is hardly something to brag about (I mean, really, all the Fire do is tie), their win vs. San Jose was a sign of their capability. If they can show that form, they’ll make the playoffs.

13. CHICAGO FIRE

Last Week: 11
Result: T 1-1 @ CHV
Last Five: T-W-T-T-T

Another week, another draw for Chicago. I'm running out of ways to put it. This week though, I'm moving Chicago down a spot rather than up, simply because they had the lead, but relinquished it in 20 minutes. Yes, it has gotten to the point I have to analyze Chicago's drawing spree that deep.

14. COLORADO RAPIDS

Last Week: 13
Result: T 0-0 vs. HOU, T 1-1 @ SKC
Last Five: W-L-L-T-T

You know, had Colorado lost to Columbus in the quarterfinals of the MLS Cup Playoffs, no one would be criticizing their form. Rather, this is what would have been expected from the “defending champs”. Has anyone noticed that MLS no longer cites Colorado with that honor? I wouldn’t either.

15. NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION

Last Week: 16
Result: T 3-3 @ RSL
Last Five: L-L-L-T-L

In any normal circumstance, the ability to draw against Real Salt Lake in general is quite an accomplishment. The ability to draw RSL at Rio Tinto is a feat only so few can boast about. However, when you're up 2-0, have a man advantage following a non-foul that the center official is oblivious towards, then yeah, conceding three goals and letting the team with the disadvantage manhandle you...is quite embarrassing. More so than losing at home to that team's reserve side, or 5-0 and 6-0 in year's past.

16. PORTLAND TIMBERS

Last Week: 18
Result: L 1-2 vs. SKC
Last Five: L-L-T-L-L

In lieu of highlighting how much of an expansion (or “promoted”) side the Timbers seem to exhibit, lets talk about the ups. Darlington Nagbe. Given the incredibly, incredibly poor performances of the Canadian clubs and the jokingly awful, yet hilarious, letdown by New England, Portland gets to go up a few spots.

17. VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC

Last Week: 15
Result: L 1-2 @ TOR, L 0-1 vs. CLB
Last Five: L-T-W-L-L

Losing the Canadian Championship to Toronto was heartbreaking already, and to lose to a team has horrendous as Toronto in league play earlier in the week does not make the situation any more settling. Oh, and then losing at home for the first time in ages. The "expansion" tag is clearly showing.

18. TORONTO FC

Last Week: 17
Result: W 2-1 vs. VAN, L 0-5 @ NY
Last Five: T-L-L-W-L

My, oh my, Frings and Koevermans cannot come soon enough. Toronto at this point should self-relegate themselves to USL PRO. At least there, the Reds might just possibly perform satisfactory enough to finish mid-table.

About the Author

Tyler Walter

Author & Editor

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