Well it was an entertaining week with every team in action, and TH14 finally got his first MLS goal. Well the two of the bottom teams faced off against each other on Sunday night but it was more impressed by the late match meltdowns of Chicago and New England. Neither was as epic as the RSL meltdown at Cruz Azul on Wednesday but giving up game winning goals in stoppage time is heartbreaking.
16. DC United (-)
Well guess what, after getting a win over Philly last week it was right back to their losing ways as they dropped a 1-0 egg at Chivas USA. It is unlikely that DC will get their 5th win of the season on Saturday when they host Eastern Conference leaders the Columbus Crew, the question is will DC create a new record low for goals scored in a season?
15. New England (-)
It was over a month ago when New England pulled off an upset of LA, that many people thought that the Rev's might have gotten it all figured out. Then they went on a run in SuperLiga, and could win it on Sept 1st, but that isn't MLS and only DC United's 14 losses are more than New England's 12 losses. This weekend they lost not only the season series with Philly but they lost 2-1 at home on a stoppage time goal. Their task this weekend is to play host to red hot Seattle, good thing that DC United is also likely to lose as it will keep New England from dropping any lower.
14. Houston Dynamo (-1)
A untimely early goal, followed by a red card and it was all over but the crying on the bus ride back to the hotel as the Dynamo lost 3-0 at Colorado. By virtue of that loss it is likely that the Dynamo will miss the playoffs, they have 8 matches left and 23 points, and most experts think it will take 42 points to make the playoffs. So they would need 19 of 24 points available, and to be honest that simply isn't going to happen. They do get a chance to face San Jose at Robertson Stadium on Sunday but they need to go 6-1-1 over their last 8 to get to 42, the dream could be over on Sunday.
more after the jump:
13. Philadelphia Union (+1)
Well a lot of people scratched their heads when Philly picked up Justin Mapp, a lot of people got their answer in stoppage time of the Union's match at New England as he put away the game winner and help the Union get their 5th win of the season. Listen the Union like the Dynamo are out of the playoffs, they have 20 points and 9 matches remaining and I simply don't see them getting 22 of 27 points, when they have 20 out of 63 so far this year. They might get a couple points this weekend as they play host to the KC Wizards who might be a bit overconfident after beating LA on Saturday.
12. Chivas USA (-)
A sloppy 1-0 win over DC United at home isn't enough to move Chivas USA up the rankings, as I think they join a few other teams of being out of the playoffs, they have 19 points of a possible 60 so far this year and if the magic number is 42, then they would need 23 of 30 possible points left in their season. They get to head to Colorado for a match on Saturday and failure to get a win there would be the final nail in their playoff coffin.
11. Chicago Fire (-3)
The Fire had some people talking how good they would be with Ljungberg and Castillo, but one was a bit of a cancer to his former club (look at Seattle without him) and one admits that he isn't soccer fit. A tough last second loss at Seattle, cost the Fire 3 points and with 24 points and 11 matches remaining, the Fire aren't eliminated yet but they will need to will need to catch fire soon. They will face the struggling LA Galaxy on Saturday afternoon, a loss will really put them in a hole, but a win could get them back in the playoff hunt.
10. Toronto FC (-1)
The Red's needed to get a win at home over RSL this weekend but they not only got outplayed for much of the match but they had to settle for a 0-0 draw. With just 3 home matches remaining Toronto will have to find a way to improve their 1-7-1 road record in a hurry if they want to make the playoffs. They have 27 points with 9 matches (27 points) remaining, they will need 15 points, which means they will need at last 6 from the road, they have just 4 points from their first 9 road matches. TFC will have a very tough road test this weekend, they head to Frisco to face FC Dallas, who have just two losses this year.
9. Kansas City Wizards (+2)
A couple weeks ago I thought that the Wizards were done, but two straight wins including this weekend's 2-0 win over the LA Galaxy have KC just 3 points out of a playoff spot. They have 9 matches left and if they can keep their winning streak going when they head to Philly this weekend, then they will be one step closer to getting back into the playoff picture.
8. Colorado Rapids (+1)
I am not sure how good the Rapids really are, they were gifted an early goal against Houston, then a stupid move got Palmer sent off early and they were able to get the 3-0 win over the Dynamo. They have 31 points and that would mean they would likely need 11 more points from their remaining 9 matches, a very reachable goal. Chivas USA will head to Dick's this weekend, it will be a huge 6 point match for both teams. A loss will cripple Chivas' playoff hopes.
7. San Jose Earthquakes (-)
The Quakes didn't look very organized in their 2-0 loss to New York, but with the injuries and short bench I can't move them down for that loss. San Jose would be in the playoffs if they started today with 29 points, they have 10 matches left and will likely need 13 points from the 30 possible points left. They get a tough task this weekend as they will head to Houston for a Sunday evening match, Houston on Labor Day weekend is just plain nasty. Good Luck San Jose.
6. Seattle Sounders (-)
Well I wish I had room to move Seattle up, they showed real heart against Chicago and like a playoff team they played until the final whistle, they got the 2-1 win in stoppage time to move them up to 32 points. They have 8 matches left and should be able to make the playoffs after a slow start. They have to head to New England for a Saturday match, the Sounders have been good on the road with a 3-4-3 record.
5. New York Red Bulls (-)
Well TH14 found the back of the net and the Red Bulls were able to get a 2-0 win over San Jose, they looked very good in doing so and they moved up to 37 points, which is good enough for second place in the East. From the worst team in MLS last year to a solid playoff team, and as they head out to Salt Lake City for this weekends match they will have to do so without a number of their players who will be on national team duty. They will have Joel Lindpere, who has told his national team that he won't play for them for the rest of the MLS season.
4. Los Angeles Galaxy (-1)
Yes the Galaxy are still the top team in the West, yes they still lead the way for the Supporters' Shield, but they drop because their recent form has been sad to say the least. 2-4-1 in their last 7 league matches, tossed out of the US Open Cup by Seattle, bounced from CCL action by USL side Puerto Rico. They will still make the playoffs but based on what happens on the weekend they could find themselves no longer in first place in both the West and Supporters' Shield race. They head to Chicago and once again they find themselves playing on Saturday afternoon and on Telefutura.
3. FC Dallas (+1)
10 Draws, just 2 losses, and 3 points have FC Dallas securely in a playoff spot and after a 0-0 draw at Columbus they have shown they can play with the top teams in the league. The Hoops's should be able to get a win on Saturday as they host Toronto FC (who are awful on the road), and that would put them on 40 points with 8 matches to go.
2. Columbus Crew (+1)
The Crew move up because LA moved down, a 0-0 home draw with FC Dallas keeps them at the top of the Eastern Conference and their 41 points is second best in MLS. The Crew will make the playoffs, the question is can they hold off the Red Bulls for the top spot in the East and can they secure their 3rd straight Supporters' Shield? They should get a win on Saturday as they will head to RFK Stadium to face DC United, didn't I say the same thing a couple weeks ago when they headed to CommunityAmerica Ballpark?
1. Real Salt Lake (-)
After their midweek meltdown and heartbreak in Mexico City, a spend RSL side headed directly north of the border to face TFC on Saturday, and they had to deal with a bit more heartbreak as two late shots bounced off the posts and out as they had to settle for a 0-0 draw. Up next is history, RSL currently have 40 points and the next point they get will be the most in the teams history, add in the fact that RSL hasn't lost at home in 21 straight matches, so when they take the pitch against the New York Red Bulls a lot will be on the line. They will have to do so without their top scorer, Alvaro Saborio and Will Johnson, their non stop midfielder, who will both be on national team duty.
There is a lot on line this week as every team will be in action on Labor Day weekend, and I can't wait for it all to kick off.
OFF MY SOAPBOX