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Major League Soccer week 10 recap and Power Rankings

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So my picks from the weekend left much to be desired as I only got 3 of 8 right, but interestingly enough I did get my upset of the week right,.  The Union beat Houston on the road to get their second franchise win, and first on the road.  LA proved to be too much for Columbus as the battle between East and West was a dead heat with each conference getting two wins against teams from the other conference, while also losing two.

My Picks

Actual Results

FC Dallas 2- Chicago 2

FC Dallas 1 - Chicago 1

Columbus 1 - LA Galaxy 0

LA Galaxy 2 - Columubs 0

Chivas USA 2 - DC United 1

DC United 3 - Chivas 2

New England 0 - New York 0

New England 3 - New York 2

Philadelphia 2 - Houston 1

Philly Union 3 - Houston 2

Seattle 1 - Colorado 1

Colorado 1 - Seattle 0

San Jose 2 - Toronto 1

Toronto 3 - San Jose 1

Real Salt Lake 2 - KC Wizards 0

Real Salt Lake 4 - Wizards 1

So that leaves us with the bottom 3 teams all picking up wins but the log jam of teams with 2 or 3 wins makes ranking the bottom teams tough, as there are 8 teams with 5 or more wins and 8 teams with 3 or fewer.

16. DC United (-)

Credit for picking up a win, but at home against the bottom team in the West isn't enough to offset their league worst 8 losses. and -13 goal differential.  United has a huge week, a Wednesday match against RSL for a spot in the LHUSOC proper, followed up by a Saturday contest with Real Salt Lake.  Win that Saturday match and I will move you out of the basement.

15. Chivas USA (-2)

Losing to the worst team in MLS, even on the road is no excuse as the 7 losses outweighs the 3 wins and while the 10 points would have them tied for 5th in the East, it had them dead last in the West and this team simply looks lost right now.  They get another chance as they will face New York on Saturday

The rest of the power rankings after the jump:

14. Kansas City Wizards (-2)

No wins since week 2, a 4-1 defeat at RSL and while there is talent on this team the confusion and lack of real teamwork and organization on the pitch has me worried that it could be a very long season for the fans of the Wizards, maybe a throwback jersey with the rainbows will make everyone remember better times.  Their next test is to travel to BMO field and face the now hot boys of TFC.

13. Philadelphia Union (+2)

I picked them to get their upset win over Houston, a little time off and a style of play that will force many teams to have to change their normal patterns of play.  I love that they play attacking soccer no matter what, and that will serve them well as the season goes along.  The Union still have a long way to go before they prove themselves a real threat, find a way to get another road win or result this weekend in Chicago and you will get everyones attention.

12. New England Revolution (+2)

All year the Rev's have had to battle against adversity, injuries, personal issues, and a number of new faces, and all year their efforts have ended in a mixed bag of results. A likely career ending injury to Preston Burpo, a keeper they traded to get because normal starter Matt Reis was out recovering from an injury, took the shine off an early lead over the Red Bulls.  Two second half red cards provided the Rev's a chance to claim a victory in match that was overshadowed by the injury.  New England now have a tough task as they will head to Seattle on Saturday for their last match before the All Star break.

11. Seattle Sounders (-1)

You have to wonder if any team is looking forward to the World Cup break more than Seattle?  Expectations were high but nobody expect them to be 3-5-3 after their first 11 matches, the 1-0 loss to Western Conference rival Colorado hurts because the playoff spots out of the West will be hard to get.  The upside for the Sounders is that they get two home matches before the World Cup break, first up are the Revolution.  The time to recover from a bad start is getting shorter and shorter as the Sounders find themselves 17 points behind the LA Galaxy after 11 matches.

10. Chicago Fire (-1)

The Fire would be in last place if there were in the West, but 10 points is good enough for 5th in the East, but without being able to count on wins at home, the Fire could be in for a long season.  They get two more chances for home results before the WC break, but you have to believe that the Philly Union are going to come in and cause problems for the Fire.  Some in Section 8 have to be wishing that Blanco was back providing the Fire with a spark, as their 2-3-4 record is more smoke than fire.

9. New York Red Bulls (-1)

The plunge continues for the Red Bulls, after just one loss in their first 6 matches they have now dropped 4 in a row.  You have to believe that the poor performances have contributed to frustration, like 2 red cards against the Rev's and now no Miller or Mendes, along with injuries will put the Red Bulls at a disadvantage as they have two matches this week.  Wednesday they will face a Houston team that will try to put their loss to the Union behind them, and then on the weekend they will host Chivas USA, can the Red Bulls find a way to slow down teams from the West?

8. FC Dallas (+3)

I know many people will look at this and wonder what I am thinking but once again the Hoops go on the road and get a result, when you consider they had their match against the Fire won had it not been for poor decisions by the officials, and everyone else stumbling, it is easy for me to move FCD up.  They get a real test against against San Jose on Saturday, their final match before the break.

7. Houston Dynamo (-2)

The streak of wins followed by losses continues as does the yo-yo act they Dynamo do in my rankings.  You have to believe that a home loss to the expansion Union will finally shake up the Dynamo enough to get out of their .500 performance.  They get two chances this week, as first they head to New York to face a struggling Red Bull squad (should be a win) and then they go all the way to LA for a matchup against the undefeated Galaxy (a loss?).  Maybe their yo-yo act continues for another week.

6. San Jose Earthquakes (-2)

Well, the Quakes had a perfect chance to convince everyone that they were for real this year, just beat TFC (a team that struggles on the road) at home, but the wheels came off and despite out shooting TFC 16-9, they ended with a 3-1 loss.  Next up they will face the best of the East as the Crew come to town on Wednesday, and then travel to Dallas for a Saturday weekend matchup.

5. Toronto FC (+2)

Well just when you didn't know what was up with Toronto who is great at home but winless on the road, they come out and ride the red hot De Rosario to get a win over one of the hottest teams in MLS, San Jose.  The Red's jump to second in the East on the win, and now get to go home for their last match before the World Cup break, and they get the Wizards, who have had real issues since week 2.  Can TFC keep pace with Columbus, who have two matches this week?

4. Colorado Rapids (+2)

Wins over conference foes always help and for Colorado getting a win over Seattle has to have the Rapids happy, almost as happy as Conor Casey getting his first (non-PK goal) of the season.  They won't have time to rest on their laurels at all, as Columbus will be coming to Dick's this weekend looking to get revenge on a Western conference team after their first loss of the year.

3. Real Salt Lake (-)

Wins at home and a big road win over Chivas last weekend, and RSL posted a perfect May (5-0-0) and did their best to keep pace with the still unbeaten Galaxy.  A sloppy but convincing win over KC 4-1, kicks off a busy week for RSL as they will face DC United twice in 4 days (Wednesday in US Open Cup, Saturday in MLS action).  The RSL offense has been the story, as they lead MLS with 21 goals and only LA has a better goal differential (RSL is +10, and LA is +16).  RSL finds itself battling some potential injury issues to go along with their busy schedule but a road win on Saturday and RSL will have won more road matches in the first 11 of 2010, than they did in all of 2009.  Can Alvaro Saborio and Fabian Espindola continue their solid offensive play as RSL plays on the road?

2. Columbus Crew (-)

Well I have questioned how good the Crew are all season, and a 2-0 loss to LA at home didn't fully justify my skeptical nature, but there were no last second miracles or mystery calls to save the Crew.  So now they have two more matches against solid Western Conference foes, Wednesday at San Jose and Saturday at Colorado.  If they can grind out results on the road, they might convince me to be kinder to them, but losses could drop them down out of the top 4 in a hurry.

1. LA Galaxy (-)

So you lose two players to the US World Cup squad, you lose guys who a combined have 10 goals and 10 assist, and you head off to face the only other undefeated team in MLS on the road and pick up a 2-0 win.  Not only do you win but two guys get their first goals of the season as Michael Stephens and Tristan Bowan both beat the Crew defense.  Now the Galaxy get a chance to put more distance between themselves and the team that ended up in second in the West last year, Houston will make the trip to the HDC to see if they can avenge LA's 2-0 win at Robertson Stadium back in April?  For LA they can continue their impressive run and cross the 30 point mark with a result on Saturday.

A lot of action before the World Cup starts in 10 days, 14 MLS matches and as MLS heads to week 11 teams will have a chance to start to make their case for All Star candidates, and set themselves up for the rest of the MLS season.