Well I simply didn't have a chance to sit down and do picks before this weekends MLS action, so I will jump right to the power rankings:
16. Chivas USA (-)
A home loss to FC Dallas isn't the restart that Chivas needed, but they will get a weekend home match against the Philly Union. Not sure if that is a good thing for them or not as the Union have as many wins as Chivas does
15. KC Wizards (-2)
It is looking like the wheels are coming off at KC, a home loss of 3-0 for a team that was defensively sound early in the year, and then a late red card to Davy Arnaud makes me wonder if there is a change coming soon as KC might want to start thinking how to take advantage of their new stadium next year.
more after the jump:
14. DC United (-1)
Well after a win over Seattle (which after their performance this weekend, seems less impressive) the guys in Black are back in the red of losing. A 2-0 loss at the Crew, move DC United back down my rankings up next is a trip to the West Coast as they will face San Jose this weekend.
13. Philadelphia Union (+2)
A new home stadium can always help a team out, beating Seattle 3-1 in an impressive fashion will move you up my rankings. I was very impressed with the way the Union attacked, a style they have played all year and is now paying some dividends, they will be a tough team at home. Now the Union head out on the road again for a match against Chivas USA, but this could be a chance for the Union to pick up a second road win of the season.
12. New England (-)
There is something wrong with New England, I am not sure what exactly it is, but I imagine their injury issues have played a huge part of the problem but there is something more. I think that they made some trades to cover for injuries has caused some real issues for them, Wells Thompson and Jeff Larentowicz left as did Steve Ralston (who is now back), but it seems like this is a team that is in a funk of transition and I am not sure their season gets easier. Next up for the Rev's is a Friday night match up in Salt Lake with the defending Champs and a team that beat them 6-0 the last time they faced off at Rio Tinto.
11. Seattle Sounders (-1)
Not sure I can say much more than Sounder at Heart did in his recent tweet "Is it lack of Talent, poor Tactics, bad Chemistry, or wrong Execution?" A 3-1 loss before the break to DC United, a 3-1 loss to Philly in their first match after the break. Many are hoping that the arrival of Swiss National team player Blaise Nkufo will help them out, but I think the combination of the items above, you have to remember it was easy for a talented Sounder side to surprise people last year in the first half of the season, not so much anymore.
10. Houston Dynamo (+1)
If the Dynamo played in the East (they might be next season) they would be in a tie for 4th place, instead they sit in 6th in the West and out of the playoff hunt. They did get a draw against Colorado and move up simply based on the fact that others around them moved down
9. San Jose (-2)
Is it a bit harsh to move San Jose down two spots for outplaying RSL in Salt Lake? Probably but failure to close the deal in a match they very well could have won, makes me continue to wonder about the Quakes. They get to go back home for the holiday weekend and face off against DC United, a win here might just move them back up.
8. Chicago Fire (+1)
A road win no matter how ugly has to be worth a spot in the ranking and the Fire got a 1-0 result over a bad New England team. Not sure about the Fire a 4-3-5 record is far from impressive, up next will be a trip to Columbus on Saturday, should be a good matchup of the teams that have ruled the East the last few seasons.
7. FC Dallas (+1)
Over the last 6 weeks of 2009 FC Dallas made a run that almost got them to the playoffs, in 2010 they aren't making headlines just yet, but with just two losses they are putting together a season that looks a lot like what LA did last year. A good number of draws and some results on the road, a 2-1 win over Chivas at the HDC is good for a spot, but can they follow it up with a home win over KC this weekend?
6. Toronto FC (-)
I gave some thought to moving TFC further up the rankings, they for the second time this year head the LA Galaxy to a 0-0 draw, which is impressive, but not enough to move any of the teams in the top 5 our. Next up are the Dynamo who will head to BMO field on Thursday night, a chance for a big win over a Western Conference foe. Oh and kudos to TFC for signing a new deal with BMO to be their jersey sponsor thru 2015.
5. Colorado Rapids (-1)
You would think a 2-2 draw on the road over Houston would move you up or at least keep you the same, but for Colorado it opens more questions than it answers. Both sides in the match looked sloppy, even worse than the RSL vs. San Jose match. We should get some answers as the Rapids play host to the Red Bulls on July 4th, and their should be plenty of fireworks on the pitch as well.
4. New York Red Bulls (+1)
Henry who? If you are a Red Bulls fan, you have to wonder if the World Cup washout will be more of a distraction than a help (remember Beckham's arrival?). Only the Galaxy have more wins that the Red Bulls, and that is an impressive turn around for a team that was the worst in MLS last year. A 3-0 win over KC on the road was enough to move up one spot, a win on the 4th over Colorado might move them up even more.
3. Columbus Crew (-)
Oh I could have moved the Crew back up to #2, but why a home win over DC United? A questionable call to get there, and the fact that I am still not convinced they are nearly as good as the rest of the Eastern conference is bad. They should get a better test this weekend as the Fire come to town, and hopefully they can do enough to convince me that I should take them more seriously.
2. Real Salt Lake (-)
It was tempting to move them down after a lackluster effort against San Jose, very tempting, but the 8 saves made by Nick Rimando reminded me that this year RSL is getting results when they aren't playing their best. That is something they haven't done in the past, and could be the difference this year. RSL will have a chance to impress as they play host to New England on Friday night.
1. LA Galaxy (-)
Had RSL won, or Columbus played someone better than DC United, it might have been enough for me to move the Galaxy out of the top spot as their last two matches have seen less than impressive play from the top team. Maybe getting Edson and Landon back will help the Galaxy reclaim their winning form. It may not be that tough as they will face Seattle at the HDC on the 4th.
Players of the Week:
Thought I would do something new this week and pick a player of the week, but there where two who impressed me and both were keepers.
First up was Chris Seitz, you know the kid who has been blamed for most of the struggles of the expansion side Union, and yes he has made his fair share of mistakes this year, like the rest of the team. On Sunday they opened PPL park the new home SSS for the Union and Chris was impressive, despite his team giving up an early goal, they got back into the match to tie it up at 1-1, and then the Sounders were awarded a PK and Seitz made the save and fired up the fans and his team, which would go on to get the 3-1 win to open their new stadium.
Next up is RSL's Nick Rimando who had to make up for his teams less than stellar play with 8 huge saves to keep his team in the match that would eventually end up a 0-0 draw. RSL head coach Jason Kreis told Nick after the match that he saved the team losing 2 points and kept them getting at least one point. This as RSL ran their home undefeated streak to 21 matches in all competitions and their MLS unbeaten streak to 8.
OFF MY SOAPBOX