OK, it was a big weekend for DC United who picked up a big 1-0 win at Toronto FC, no they aren't going to make the playoffs and with 6 matches to go it is unlikely they will ever get out of the cellar:
16. DC United - 18 points from 24 matches (-)
If you ever wanted proof that the Eastern Conference is lacking depth this year, you got answers this weekend. DC United went to BMO field and slapped around the Red's and left with 3 points and having nailed the Toronto playoff hope coffin shut. Their next task is huge, travel to LA and face the Galaxy at the Home Depot Center, it is enough to make we cheer for the Black and Red but I doubt they can pull of a win or draw against LA.
15. New England Revolution - 24 points from 23 matches (-3)
The Rev's got run off the field by Chivas USA on Friday night in a match that could have been much worse than the 2-0 score, and that despite the fact that Chivas didn't look that impressive. Injuries, new players, and lots of other issues are clearly impacting the Rev's ability to get results. I am sure that the elevation will be the latest in a long line of reason why New England has failed to get results, as they head to Denver to face the Rapids, but I think their lack of quality midfielders, defenders and strikers is much more likely the reason for their struggles.
14. Houston Dynamo - 23 points from 23 matches (+1)
They Dynamo move up a spot despite not being in action, that is how New England sucked. The Dynamo should actually get a win this weekend as they play Toronto FC, a team that was tired and weary on Saturday and get to fly to Salt Lake for a Wednesday night CCL match, and then on to Houston. TFC have just one road win this year, so they are going to be ripe for the Dynamo to take advantage of.
more after the jump:
13. Chivas USA - 25 points from 23 matches (+1)
A big win over New England keeps the very slimmest of playoff hopes alive for Chivas USA, but reality is they won't make it. The team has talent but they lack leadership and tend to play as individuals more than as a team. Once they get over that hurdle, they might just be on to something. Their next match takes them to KC and the lovely CommunityAmerica Ballpark.
12. Philadelphia Union - 24 points from 23 matches (+1)
For weeks people had talked about how the Fire were a likely playoff team, but then they went to PPL Park and left with no points, no goals, and a lot of problems. The Union took advantage of the Fire and Le Toux is making people wonder if the leagues MVP can come from a team so far out of the playoffs? There is no time for the Union to celebrate their first shut out in team history, as they well be in San Jose to face off against the Quakes who kept their playoff dreams alive this weekend.
11. Toronto FC - 28 points from 24 matches (-)
Well when I dropped them down this far for their inability to get road results, little did I know they would drop a home match to the worst team in the league. It is clear that their is some level of chaos in the TFC organization and to be honest I think it has been there since the arrival of Preki, when you hire a coach who expects to be in charge but then have someone like Mo Johnston who once was coach but now is the Director of Soccer who also wants to be in charge you get conflict and chaos. After the loss to DC United, Preki called out MLS for poor scheduling, his players for lack of effort and the Champions League for schedule congestion. I hate to tell him that life isn't getting any easier as TFC will head to Salt Lake for a Wednesday Champions league match and then they head to Houston for MLS action on Saturday. Given their poor away form, expect two more losses this week.
10. Chicago Fire - 26 points from 22 matches (-)
I am almost ready to break out the "I told you so" for all of those who claimed that the Fire would sizzle through the rest of the season after picking up Ljungberg and Castillo as DP's. I said I could take them as a legit playoff contender if they won both of their matches last week, but they won neither and I wish there was a lower place to put them. Now they get to come to Salt Lake City for a Saturday afternoon match, the only upside for them is that MLS has decided that Javier Morales committed a foul in the Seattle match and have suspended him, but Javi or no Castle Real is no fun place to play.
9. Kansas City Wizards - 27 points from 22 matches (-)
The Wizards are the only Eastern conference team other than Columbus and New York that I believe still have a real shot at making the playoffs and they had a week off to get ready for a huge match this weekend as they will travel to the Home Depot Center to face Chivas USA on Saturday. They need to find a way to get a tough road result.
8. Colorado Rapids - 34 points from 23 matches (-2)
Colorado went to New York needing a result to put some distance between themselves and the other teams looking for a playoff spot, but after a 3-1 thrashing they now will need to continue to battle to secure their spot and with Omar Cummings getting hot at the right time they should be able to get some hard fought points this weekend. New England will come to Dick's on Saturday and a win for Colorado would move them one step closer to a playoff spot.
7. Seattle Sounders - 33 points from 24 matches (+1)
The next two weeks will tell us a lot about the Sounders, they have 4 matches (2 MLS and 2 CCL) and all of them are on the road. They got a hard fought 0-0 home draw with Real Salt Lake and they won't play another home league match until October. They are in Costa Rica to face Saprissa on Tuesday in a CCL matchup, and then on Saturday they will be in Columbus to face the top team in the Eastern Conference, neither is a fun place to play but for the Sounders they will need results to keep their CCL and MLS playoff hopes in good shape.
6. San Jose Earthquakes - 33 points from 22 matches (+1)
San Jose faced the hottest team in MLS when FC Dallas came to Buck Shaw and got a hard fought 0-0 draw as they became just the 3rd team this year to keep Dallas from scoring. It is a short week for the Quakes as they will play host to the Philadelphia Union on Wednesday night, a win would leapfrog them over both Seattle and Colorado in the Western Conference standings and the playoff hunt.
5. Columbus Crew - 44 points from 24 matches (-3)
After a 1-0 win last weekend over DC United, the Crew took their act to LA and the Galaxy sent them packing in a 3-1 thrashing that exposed the Crew's weakness against teams from the Western Conference. They have a Tuesday Champions League match, before hosting the Seattle Sounders on Saturday, where they will get a chance to prove that they can play well against teams from the West, even if only at home. They need to be careful as the Red Bulls are closing in on them for the top spot in the Eastern Conference.
4. New York Red Bulls - 40 points from 24 matches (+1)
A big win over Colorado is enough to move the Red Bulls up a spot in my power rankings, now the question is can they catch the Crew for the top spot in the East? To do so they will need to prove that they can play against the top teams in the West and do better than Columbus, they get to do that Thursday night when they will head to Dallas to face the hoops and see if they can become just the 3rd team this year to hand FC Dallas a loss.
3. Los Angeles Galaxy - 47 points from 24 matches (+1)
A big 3-1 win over the Columbus Crew broke their slump in a big way and let them welcome back David Beckham in style, they also were able to reclaim the top spot in both the West and the Supporters' Shield with the 3 points. Not only should they be able to hold on to those gains but unless the teams chasing them all get wins they could add more to that lead as they will play host to DC United in a match they should win easily.
2. FC Dallas - 41 points from 23 matches (+1)
After keeping their unbeaten streak alive with a 0-0 draw at San Jose the red hot hoops will look to further support their claim for the top spot in MLS with a huge showdown against New York on Thursday Night, but instead of this incredible match-up being covered by ESPN, they will provide you with WNBA action followed by repeats of poker. One thing is clear that the Thursday matchup will tell us a lot about both of these teams as they face a tough test.
1. Real Salt Lake - 44 points from 24 matches (-)
You know I love when everyone talks about FC Dallas and their 14 match unbeaten streak, and I really love it when people ignore (WWWWWTWTWWLTWTTWTW) the one loss in 18 matches for RSL because it is that type of stuff that motivates the RSL players to be even better. It was a tough 0-0 road draw at Seattle that kept RSL's shutout streak going to 442 minutes (3rd longest in MLS this year- yes RSL has the longest streak of the season with it 567 minute steak). Now RSL get a midweek CCL match with Toronto coming to Rio Tinto Stadium, and then RSL will play host to the Chicago Fire, if they can get a win RSL would set the MLS record for longest home unbeaten streak at 23 matches.
Should be a fun week as several teams could go a far way to either securing or ending their playoff hopes.
OFF MY SOAPBOX