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Major League Soccer Power Rankings - Week 14

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Well we have a couple of teams that established themselves at the top, a little movement at the bottom, and a good bit of shuffling in the middle. I think there are 5 teams at the top, then a large clump of teams that are floundering around, and then a few teams that should either start planning on major summer moves or looking for what they will need in 2012 to compete.

18. Toronto FC - even

One of the few teams in MLS who have no wins in their last 5 matches, TFC also have just 2 wins on the season and no wins on the road. A 0-0 draw with New England midweek and then a 1-0 loss at home to Seattle in the closing minutes. It is a positive sign that they have seemed to have gotten better on defense. Up next will be a Saturday match against Real Salt Lake at Rio Tinto Stadium, TFC are 0-3-4 on the road.

17. New England Revolution - even

Two matches last week at home against teams in the bottom of the rankings and the Rev's are unable to get a win and like Toronto they have no wins in their last 5 matches. A 0-0 draw with TFC and a 1-1 draw with Chicago on Saturday, get the Rev's two points but at home you have to do better than that. This week the task is even tougher as New England will head to Seattle to face the Sounders, and they are looking to get their first road win (0-5-2).

more after the jump

16. Chicago Fire - down 1

The Fire have found a way to get a bunch of draws, 4 in their last 5 matches including their Saturday draw at New England. The Fire are one of 3 teams with just two wins on the season, and one of two teams with just a single win at home. If the Fire are going to make a case to be something better than a cellar dweller, this will be the week as they have two matches at home. First up is a Wednesday match with Real Salt Lake and then a Sunday match with the New York Red Bulls.

15. Sporting KC - up 1

Back to back wins over tough Western Conference opponents show that Sporting KC may be able to make a run up the rankings now that they get to play some matches at home. They will leave the comforts of LIVESTRONG Sporting Park for a Wednesday showdown at Philadelphia with the Union, and then they will come home on Saturday to take on expansion side Vancouver. A couple of strong results could move Sporting up the rankings.

14. Chivas USA - down 3

Chivas dominated possession, took more shots (fewer on goal) and found a way to give up a late goal and they allowed FC Dallas to leave the Home Depot Center with a full three points from a 2-1 loss. After a good run it is back to back losses for Chivas USA, and this weekend their task is to try to get points at PPL Park as they face the Philadelphia Union.

13. Vancouver Whitecaps - up 1

The Whitecaps got a big 1-0 win over the Union at home on Saturday and now they have just a single loss in their last 5 matches. The biggest upside is that they have started playing better defense, and that is a key for any team but even more for an expansion team. Up next will be a trip to Kansas City and the brand new LIVESTRONG Sporting Park and a chance to get their first road win.

12. DC United - up 1

Remember when you mom told you that if you can't say anything nice, then don't say anything at all. Up next will be a match with Eastern Conference rivals Houston at RFK on Saturday.

11. Portland Timbers - up 1

To come from behind against New York isn't easy, to deal with one of the craziest matches in recent MLS history to get a 3-3 draw against the Red Bulls, well it shows some maturity for a team that was trying to recover from 3 straight losses. Now comes another road test for the Timbers as they will head to Dallas for a match on Saturday as they look for their first road win (0-4-2).

10. Houston Dynamo - down 1

They Dynamo have 3 loses in their last 5 matches including a 2-0 loss at home to the Columbus Crew, who got their first road win. Houston started out doing fairly well this year but lately have had huge swings of inconsistency, I expect them to be a busy team in the transfer window, have to think they need help in their midfield most of all. A trip to RFK Stadium to face DC United on Saturday will give Houston a chance to get back to their winning ways.

9. Columbus Crew - up 1

The Crew got their first road win of the year at Houston where they beat the Dynamo 2-0, the win was enough to put the Crew in 3rd place in the East and a playoff spot if the season were to end today. I don't think the Crew are a great team, that point total would make them 6th in the West and their 5-4-6 record with 16 goals scored and 16 allowed points to an average team. The Crew will play host to Colorado on Sunday evening, a win over the defending MLS Cup champions might change my mind a bit.

8. Colorado Rapids - down 2

Getting beat by a LA team without either Donovan (Landon or Ricketts) at home 3-1 really makes me wonder what is going on with the Rapids, it was their first loss in months but getting beat that bad at home raises a lot of questions. The Rapids have a chance to bounce back on Sunday when they will face the Crew in Columbus.

7. San Jose Earthquakes - even

A 1-0 loss on Friday night at Sporting KC in a match when they had more possession and took more shots and could have gone either way isn't enough for me to drop the Quakes. I think this team is still figuring things out and each week they rely on someone stepping up for them, it might take more than one person this weekend as they will play host to the LA Galaxy.

6. Seattle Sounders - up 2

A 1-0 win over Toronto at BMO field usually won't move you up two spots but with other teams failing to impress and the Sounders with 4 straight results are starting to look like the team we expected them to be. This week will give them two chances at home to test how good they are, first up is a Thursday showdown with the New York Red Bulls, and then on Sunday they will host the New England Revolution, have to believe they should get at least 4 points.

5. New York Red Bulls - even

A crazy match with a crazy ending as the Red Bulls pull out a 3-3 draw thanks to a stoppage time PK goal. Draws are something that NYRB have become used to lately as they have 4 in their last 5 matches. If you want to find out how good or average the Red Bulls are this is the week, they get a couple road matches. First up is a trip to Seattle for a Thursday match against the Sounders, and then a Sunday match at Toyota Park against the Chicago Fire.

4. Philadelphia Union - down 1

A loss to the expansion Vancouver Whitecaps will drop you down a spot, even if it is on the road. I think the Union are a good team, they show it more often than not, but results like a 1-0 loss to Vancouver make me wonder. The Union get two home matches this week to take back the top spot in the Eastern Conference, first is a Wednesday match against Sporting KC and then on Saturday they will play host to Chivas USA.

3. Real Salt Lake - up 1

They did enough to get a win but had to settle for a 1-1 draw against DC United on Saturday, this week Real gets two chances to get some points. First up is a Wednesday road trip to Chicago to take on the Fire, RSL need a road result, actually they need to get a road win. Then they get a home match on Saturday against Toronto FC, anything less than a 4 points out of these two matches will have to be seen as a loss for RSL.

2. FC Dallas - even

The Hoops found a late goal and 3 points from the latest trip to the Home Depot Center, thanks to a 2-1 win over Chivas USA. It was great way to rebound from last weeks loss to Sporting KC, now can they keep it up? They will play host to the Portland Timbers on Saturday, can they keep the expansion side from getting their first win?

1. LA Galaxy - up 1

Well when you go to the home of the defending MLS Cup Champions and punch them in the nose 3-1 despite missing your biggest stars, well that is called making a statement and while they are just shy of that 2 points per match average, they are closer than anyone else in the league and their 9 wins are more than anyone else in the league. They may be more than half done with their season but nobody is even close to catching them yet. Up next is a trip to San Jose to battle the Quakes to see who is the best team in California.

Well there are my power rankings for this week, it should be a fun week 15 in Major League Soccer with 12 matches this week. Gonna be fun.

OFF MY SOAPBOX