MLS Rewind: Revs roll, Wizards cruise and LA crumbles

Sainey_nyassi_ap

The first weekend of the Major League Soccer season provided plenty of entertainment, excitement and storylines for the future as new stars emerged  and improved teams showed that they are ready to shake up the pecking order in MLS.

You had the New England Revolution playing without Taylor Twellman and still thrashing defending champion Houston. You had the Wizards outplaying the revamped D.C. United team that so many have pegged for greatness. Then you also had the Los Angeles Galaxy being ripped apart by a Colorado squad that looked like world-beaters against the Galaxy’s putrid defense.

Yes, it is only week one but the first round of games certainly told enough tales to let us know how things might go in the immediate future.

Here are the new SBI MLS power rankings as well as a closer look at all six of the weekend’s matches:

SBI MLS Power Rankings

  1. New England Revolution
  2. Kansas City Wizards
  3. Houston Dynamo
  4. D.C. United
  5. Chivas USA
  6. Columbus Crew
  7. Colorado Rapids
  8. Chicago Fire
  9. FC Dallas
  10. Real Salt Lake
  11. New York Red Bulls
  12. San Jose
  13. Toronto FC
  14. Los Angeles Galaxy

Here is a rundown of the weekend’s games:

Revolution 3, Dynamo 0

New England ran Houston off the field on Saturday night, showing off its young talent in a drubbing of the Dynamo. Taylor Twellman tweaked his knee before the match, but that didn’t seem to matter to the Revs, who rode impresses performances from Kenny Mansally, Adam Cristman and Sainey Nyassi (as well as the rest of New England’s midfield). I was particularly impressed with the work done by Jeff Larentowicz, who was instrumental in neutralizing Houston’s normally potent midfield. And yes, Cristman had a solid opener. I still think the Twellman-Mansally tandem winds up with the job but Cristman showed he’s ready to prove that his rookie year wasn’t a fluke.

As for the Dynamo? I wouldn’t worry too much. I don’t need to remind Houston fans how bad the team’s opening month was last year and we know how things turned out.

Wizards 2, D.C. United 0

That sound you hear is the Kansas City Wizards bandwagon filling up, and yes, I was on it before the season started. The Wizards toppled heavily-favored D.C. and while It is only one game but the skill, attacking quality and defensive discipline showed by KC in game one against a loaded D.C. team bodes well for the Wizards having the breakout year some think they can have. The Claudio Lopez-Ivan Trujillo forward tandem should make it easy for KC fans to forget Eddie Johnson and the revamped defense debuted in grand fashion with a shutout against a team many expected to set some scoring records this year.

As for D.C. United, you can argue that chances were created and the game was closer than the scoreline indicated. You can also make a case for this week’s Champions Cup action providing at least somewhat of a distraction. Either way, D.C. disappointed and KC looked great.

Rapids 4, Galaxy 0

With all due respect to Colorado, which looked amazing on Saturday, the Rapids drubbing of the Galaxy was much more of an indictment of just how bad the LA team, and defense in particular, is. Ruud Gullit would have been better off trotting out some traffic cones rather than the defense he put on the field as it became painfully obvious that Abel Xavier is past it and the Xavier-Vanney tandem is way too slow to survive in MLS.

As for the Rapids, there will be plenty of good feelings from this result but it should be remembered that Colorado won last year’s opener in impressive fashion as well. Christian Gomez looked good in his Rapids debut while Omar Cummings stated his case to be Colorado’s go-to goal-scorer.

Crew 2, Toronto FC 0

Toronto fans came to Columbus in bunches, a total of more than 2,300 actually, but that support meant little to a Columbus team that was tougher and more clinical when the chances came in Saturday’s win. The Crew didn’t look like a young team as much as a good team that just might be ready to go from team loaded with potential to team ready for a playoff run.

Toronto fans, particularly the ones who trekked to Ohio, aren’t going to be happy with TFC opening year two with a loss, and are even less happy with an attack that is clearly still lacking a playmaker. TFC insists that help is on the way but every week that passes will put Toronto deeper into a hole in the loaded Eastern Conference.

Chicago 1, Real Salt Lake 1

Cuauhtemoc Blanco did it again. SBI’s choice for league MVP got his candidacy off to a good start as he helped the Fire salvage a point against an RSL squad that showed some real attacking flair and quality. Salt Lake coach Jason Kreis has done a good job to integrate his new faces, though blowing a lead at home for a second straight home opener can’t sit well with RSL fans.

The Fire didn’t exactly look sharp, but salvaging a point on the road isn’t the worst way to start the Denis Hamlett era. That said, it would have been nice for a Chicago forward to step up and get off to a good start. Could scoring from the forwards still be a problem for the Fire. Chicago’s patchwork defense held its own (Bakary Soumare’s own goal aside) and you have to wonder whether Wilman Conde will ever get over his desire to join the Red Bulls and return to the all-star caliber form he showed for Chicago last year.

Chivas USA 1, FC Dallas 1

FC Dallas spent a decent amount of money and created a good amount of buzz surrounding its signing of Mexican defender Duilio Davino despite concerns about whether he was really worth it. His costly error in FC Dallas’ 1-1 tie vs. Chivas USA on Sunday leves that question as a "no" right now.

Davino’s turnover helped Maykel Galindo find an equalizer in a game FC Dallas took control of in the second half. The draw was probably a fair result but FCD fans won’t be happy seeing their high-priced defender giving away points. Chivas USA will gladly take a road point with forwards Ante Razov and Galindo still recovering from injuries.

What did you think of this weekend’s games? What stood out? Was it the great goals scored, the pitiful showing by the Galaxy? New England’s thrashing of Houston? Share your thoughts below

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62 Responses to MLS Rewind: Revs roll, Wizards cruise and LA crumbles

  1. Tony in Quakeland says:

    Alright! We moved up two spots without even playing!

  2. Justin O says:

    Just to nitpick, the online bookmakers had KC-DC as just about dead even. DC were defintely not heavily favored.

  3. David Berger says:

    I watched parts of all the games. I obviously love that DC lost but I still can’t believe Colorado won 4-0.

    The Revs were real good without Twellman and Khano Smith (international duty with Bermuda). And remember Noonan left in the off-season.

  4. Spencer says:

    Ives no love for Salt Lake? I don’t think Colombus should be ranked that high. They beat a very poor Toronto team. But its only week 1 and hopefully all my Fantasy team guys won’t get carded again this week.

  5. Sandro says:

    I can’t wait for the Red Bulls to take the field and beat the Crew. Are the LA Galaxy still the Jewel of the MLS. Looks like that Jewel needs to be cleaned because it is not shining.

  6. Spencer says:

    Think we need to mention the average attendance was about 15k, with RSL taking the cake for bolstering it that high. They had just over 20k.

  7. The Red Bulls didnt lose. I am happy.

  8. MLS on Fox Soccer Channel? The broadcast is ‘ok’. Can’t wait to watch Thursday night games in HD on ESPN2 (man what a difference it makes).

    Thank God for Direct Kick online.

  9. Mlsowner says:

    This is the season we’ve been waiting for!!!!!

  10. 4now says:

    Hey Ives,

    Would you be up for doing an “Ives MLS Team of the Week” ala Garth Crooks at BBC Football?

  11. Ossington Mental Youth says:

    Toronto showed more promise then last year with many elements that should be expected from a football team (ex tactics, playing the whole field, etc). Some nice chances but no finishing. Without a doubt we need an attacking playmaking mid and some wingers. Relying on defenders to play the wing is a massive mistake as is expecting defensive mids to get the plays started. Mo knows this and better solve it (hes had sometime and most certainly knows the pressure seeing as the local papers are paying some massive attention to TFC, FINALLY).

  12. PeteK says:

    Here is my team of the week:

    GK: W. Hesmer

    DF: C. Albright

    DF: S. Keel

    DF: B. Prideaux

    MF: C. Gomez

    MF: T. Cooke

    MF: R. Rogers

    MF: S. Kljestan

    MF: J. Larentowicz

    FW: A. Christman

    FW: C. Lopez

  13. Hincha Tim says:

    Ives,

    I would not say that the Chicago defense held its own so much as the RSL did not finish about 5 clear chances to score. Its early, but mark my words, if RSL finds a target scorer (which Deuchar might be) who can finish, they could be the surprise team of the year. RSL’s defense was airtight, especially Bouchar in the central back, with the one notable exception and the midfield was much better than Chicago’s.

  14. Erik Abarca says:

    Take nothing away from the Rapids, Clavijo excuted his game plan. Rapids were much faster and sharper. Matrosleni, and Hercules did’nt even get the start becuase of injuris, they were already up 2 or 3 zero when they came in and Kivorski did’nt even play. I was also impress w/ Jose B. Jr, he had a good game, with a good runs and shots on goal. I think they are going to surprise many people.

  15. Ossington Mental Youth says:

    supposedly some ‘big’ signings this week, although its prob just Martin Brittain (a good but not outstanding winger, better at set pieces and crossing then making runs, a better sub then starter imo.) and Simon Lynch(a canadian born, scotland national who is based in Australia as a striker, hows that for a mouthful). Neither of which really addresses the gaping hole in the mid (tho Brittain does somewhat sort our wing). Its a start i guess. Still means we have an international slot open.

    Toronto players that stuck out (positively)

    Robinson: Played well, stayed on a wiley Schelotto and cut off many of his plays.

    Hemming: Looked great, great to see him start as well. Got a little tired near the end and fair enough, it was his first game.

    Carver: Great move making the substitutes and changing the formation. For the most part goal differential doesnt make much of a difference in the MLS as a result it was smart (and not something we would have seen with Mo as coach) to switch from the 4-4-2 to a 3-4-3 as any goal we could have salvaged would have made a difference. Its just unfortunate we didnt have any playmaking in the mid to make that difference. Also unfortunate that Moreno likes to dive and cherry pick as thats how that second goal happened. Kinda feel a little bit cheated as Brennans goal should have counted and Samuel should have scored (although i think half the stands saw where it was going before he shot). Overall im still optimistic.

  16. AlexS says:

    As a Houston supporter, I’m not too concerned about being beat by the Revs. I think that’s the worst I’ve seen the team play independent of the Rev’s – especially when it came to going after loose balls and marking on the rebound goals. No doubt in my mind the only players who weren’t looking ahed to Saprissa were Eddie Robinson, Corey Ashe, Chris Wondolowski, and Pat Onstad.

    Like ERob said, even a team of U-10s could have beaten them Saturday.

    But then it’s the Revs at home (who have had a while to prepare for this game, mind you) and you get the 3-0 scoreline.

    You just can’t have an off game against the Revolution this season and expect to NOT be run ragged, especially if Larentowicz and Nyassi play like that all season. I don’t see the Dynamo having a game where they’re that off (outside of this weekend vs FC Dalls, and away games to TFC, RSL, SJ, Colorado or Crew) where the team just doesn’t bring it.

    I also think that as Boswell gets to play more around ERob or even Ianni that less of those mistakes will happen. BobbyBoswell.com doesn’t seem to have a great understanding of his paired centerback.

    Now, enough looking back at New England. I’m looking ahead at Saprissa and then beating up FC Dallas!

  17. Reid says:

    Revs/Houston game was a pleasure to watch. The onfield play was very entertaining, I just wished Houston had gone out an gotten another striker. Ching is not up to the task game in and game out, all those years of playing physically have clearly taken their toll, he is good but he needs help

  18. gimmi says:

    First of all I hope all TFC fans that visited my home state had a nice stay.

    Abel Xavier looked slow last year, anyway hes out for the next game, lets see who else they can put in there.

    I still think DCU will end up with the most points.

    Has anyone heard anything about the U-20 team playing in Portugal.

  19. Rob C says:

    As much as I hate to say it, New England looks like the most dangerous team based on Week 1. Yes it’s only 1 week, but wow, they played some outstanding football. The two Gambians Nyassi and Mansally had good showings and again proved the expertise of Steve Nicol and his staff in terms of scouting good young talent. Here’s a hint to MLS coaches and scouts…there are a lot of real quality players in Africa, a land that has only recently been explored by European clubs and to less of an extent, MLS (I’m looking at you, Osorio).

    I thought Nyassi’s goal was of European quality (step over, cut back, rocket of shot into the top shelf) as was the play of the entire midfield.

    All this praise coming from a Red Bulls fan! Am I scared of New England? Absolutely.

  20. Ed Ho says:

    Ives, I don’t know about the Galaxy being rated as the worst team. They had way more attacking chances than Colorado. I’m sure LD will eventually figure out how to redirect 2-3 of Beckham’s crosses in during the course of the season. The Galaxy dominated the game for 30 minutes after the Colorado goal. I will say that Colin Clarke looked great on the counter.

    Toronto and RSL both looked horrible from what I saw. Those would be my bottom two along with San Jose as the worst team.

  21. Lee says:

    Nyassi’s goal was class. I was pretty impressed with how the Revs looked. I like the fact that they brought in talented youth.

  22. Fred says:

    So what happens if LA gets thumped by SJ in the toolbox this week? By by Lalas or Gullit?

  23. dan says:

    thank goodness for the galaxy… san jose wont finish this year! Go earthquakes….

    maybe frank yallop is thinking to himself (wishing he could tell lalas) “I told you so”….

  24. Phillip says:

    As a United fan I’m not worried… you saw both teams playing in the Champions Cup not put out their best 11 and looked distracted on the pitch.

  25. Mark says:

    Real Salt Lake played so well against Chicago, I would have them in 7th

  26. Keith says:

    @Ed Ho

    So exactly how much of RSL did you see? The part where they controlled the flow of play and most of the possession? The part where they outshot Chicago 17 to 8, or maybe that they had 9 shots on goal to Chicago’s 2. My guess is the only part you saw was Blanco’s goal, which was the only real chance Chicago had on goal all game.

  27. Ben says:

    Nothing to take away from Colorados game – they played well and deserved to win.

    It’s not all doom in LA – they had some chances (compared to last year, when sometimes they didn’t managed 1 shot on target duringh a game) to score and should have done better in converting them.

    the “most worrying problem” is the turtle speed centerback pairing of Vanney/Xavier. But thanks to the later’s stupidity and suspension that’s gonne be broken up anyway… (Julian Valentin looked goon in Preseason)

    btw getting rid of Lalas quickly would almost justify a bad start to the season…

    fingers crossed Ruiz injury isn’t bad/long

  28. noname says:

    Overdosed on MLS! How about that. Sucks that DC United lost but it seems to be a new tradition to tank the opener away from home prior to a CONCACAF semi-final. Still, the middle defenders were pretty good as was Gallardo. Lopez and Trujillo ultimately broke through though and KC played well. Ives is right. Those guys are the real deal.

    The Columbus-Toronto game was fun to watch. Schellotto was good and Hesmer was a revelation; but the Columbus defenders allowed a lot of balls into the box and other teams who actually have some forwards will not be as merciful (or inept) when they get their chances.

    New England was a class act. I thought they would regress when they lost Dempsey and they didn’t. I thought they would regress when they lost Dorman and Noonan and Stern John but they haven’t. They keep proving me wrong. Nicol is one heck of coach and their front office must be pretty good too — even if “you can never check out”. Not too worried about the Dynamo as they will rise to the top as they always do; but Bobby Boswell looked like the 2007 version and not the 2006 version.

    Hard to tell how good the teams were in the Real-Fire game. It was not a bad game but that field has got to be the worst in the league. Real looked okay (not great but okay) and Chicago looked uninspired.

    Colorado was great. Their defense is much improved and Gomez played well. The Galaxy sucks which is too bad because making Beckham look bad is not what this league needs. What are the odds that Landon heads to Europe this summer? Probably better than before. Thanks Alexi!

  29. RK says:

    I thought the quality this weekend was really good and entertaining, and some new players emerged — Nyassi comes to mind. Also, nice to have up to 7 games in a weekend — allows for plenty on Saturday with games on Sunday and Thursday.

  30. Mr MLS says:

    That turf in Salt Lake is about as bad as it gets. RSL may very well have a home field advantage but to think they looked good because they’ve practiced on the turf while their opponents haven’t would be fooling yourselves.

    Wait until RSL plays on grass before you rate them higher.

  31. Matt Mathai says:

    I’m a DCU supporter, and while I’d like to rely upon the excuses that our team was distracted by the upcoming Pachuca match, and that we had lots of new players, etc., I was still disappointed by the huge number of cheap giveaways we had, esp. in the midfield.

    I think our back line is stronger, esp. in the middle. We made some marking mistakes that cost us, and our outside defenders were just OK (with Namoff being more OK than Burch.)

    I think our forwards will take time to gel. (Duh.)

    I saw enough flashes out of Gallardo to be encouraged, but also know that Mediate at right mid is not the answer – nor is he intended to be.

    Credit to KC who looked good. Marinelli, Lopez, and Trujillo will be great to watch. Hartman made some good saves. I refuse to dwell on referee decisions since they tend to even out over time. I was impressed with the crowd.

  32. Steve says:

    1. New England is nasty.

    2. Ed – I don’t know what you’re talking about, LA dominated in one area only – unprofessionalism. Lando and Xavier’s meltdowns and Beckham’s body language show that these guys know where this season is headed.

    3. Can anyone tell me how long until RSL’s stadium opens and they get off that concrete?

    4. I wouldn’t worry about Houston or DC. They both are more worried about mid-week as they should be. GO GET ‘EM FELLAS!!!

    5. My Fire looked a lot like first half 2007 Fire not second half 2007 Fire. I’m very nervous about New england coming to town Thursday night. The unfair judgement of Dennis Hamlett begins Friday.

    6. Ain’t it great to have games again?!?!?! Yee Haw!!!!

  33. RK says:

    I didn’t see the RSL game, but they outshot Chicago big time…9-2 SOGs…

  34. Spencer says:

    RSL’s new stadium is set to open in October.

  35. RK says:

    LA did dominate in minutes 15-45 — Colorado only had a few attacks then, and very little possession. No one could connect on Beckham’s crosses or free kicks.

  36. Steve says:

    Fire fan disclaimer –

    RSL was slightly better than Chicago but both teams were relatively poor in an out of control foul fest played on the worst field in the league. I don’t think you can take much from it quite frankly. The game desrved to be 0-0.

  37. Dave R says:

    The gals needd to go to Franklin and Valentin immediately. Forget the other duds, Roberts, Panty Vanney and crew…

  38. brett says:

    chi-rsl : i agree about the turf, but our players need to figure it out and adjust accordingly… i dont know how many long passes were tried expecting a different result :-/

    i think we’ll have a better look at the Fire’s status when they get back on grass… but hopefully the play picks up..

  39. DURSK says:

    Give RSL some credit! They owned most of the game against Chicago – if it wasnt for Blanco, RSL would be up in the top 6

  40. brett says:

    not taking anything away from RSL… holding judgement until they both get a game on real grass…. If RSL can continue the play on real grass then ill give them even more credit… they looked well, just failed on the finishing aspect of the game

    RSL outplayed the Fire in RSL and thats a fact….dont know if anyone can argue that… im just saying with the first game on turf, when RSL is used to playing on it can make quite a bit of difference….

  41. Frank says:

    Davino has been overhyped over here. He is a FMF reject on the downside of his career. He was never even that solid at his peak.

  42. Steve says:

    I wasn’t trying to take anything away from RSL either.

    But Busch didn’t have to stand on his head and they never finished off any of their possession.

    So I think there were bigger signs for optimism based on the performances of KC, NE, Colorado and Columbus.

  43. Javier says:

    I’ve been an L.A. Galaxy fan since the league started and watching their game against Colorado was just plain painful! They were terrible. If that game wasn’t proof that they have so much money tied up in Ruiz, Beckham, and Donovan that the rest of the team sucks I don’t know what is. The defense was absolutely terrible and the middle of the field was a sieve. What’s worse is I don’t know how they correct it. I can’t imagine they have enough of a salary cap to bring in quality players. If Ruud Gullit started his best 11 than the bench has got to really suck. Alexi Lalas ruined this team now he needs to go. They need to bring in someone knowledgable who will work with the coach to make whatever trades are necessary to clear up cap space and bring in players who can help this team win.

  44. josh says:

    I made the mistake of watching the Galaxy game just before the Man U game (Tivo). I have never felt more depressed about the state of MLS soccer. The Galaxy are awful. I really hope the other games this weekend were of a better quality, because what I watched Sat evening was unwatchable. I would rather watch 10 year old AYSO games. I know that they are made up of cheap rookies, but c’mon, my co-ed rec league team plays better. I have been with MLS since the beginning, but I don’t know if I can stay loyal to the Gals much longer.

    I feel bad for Beckham (even with the $), and I can’t imagine he would stick around for much more of this.

  45. el fur de ball says:

    Kansas City looked really impressive. I think Trujillo well score a bunch of goals this year.

    I thought Toronto played pretty well and that goal should have counted. I would like to see the MLS use the goal line technology currently being bandied about in England.

    And for the last time, please outlaw playing a game on a field with football lines. I tried to watch the RSL/Fire game, and had to turn it. Rice Eccles is the worst place in the league to watch a game.

  46. guillermo says:

    What is up with Herculez Gomez’ new hairdo and beard?

  47. Original Aaron says:

    Ok, I know this is crazy and unlikely to happen given that LD gets pretty much whatever he wants and he seems to get homesick whenever he gets too far away from SoCal, but… TFC really needs a creative midfielder. It is THE missing piece that could get them into the playoffs (although probably not enough to make them a contender once there). I think at this point it should be obvious to everyone- including Lalas- that having all your money tied up in 3 players simply won’t cut it. The Gals need to move one of their big 3 in favor of adding some depth in the form of cheap, young, mid-level talent to replace some of the road cones playing defense. There is no way that the Gals move Beckham. Even if they lose every game this year, they will make money simply b/c Becks is a part of the team- so his presence is a given. El Pescadito is someone who it makes sense for them to keep, given that Beckham’s presence is a given on the right side and the Gals need someone to finish his crosses. Landon has always been a technical and breakaway guy, and has never been strong in the air. He should be the odd man out in LA and they should look to move him. TFC makes the most sense. It would fill needs for both teams, giving TFC the creative midfield force they desperately need, plus TFC had a really strong draft and can afford to spare a young, cheap player or 2. There may even be benefits for the USMNT as it would mean the development of some midfield chemistry between LD and Edu… probably makes way too much sense for Lalas to attempt it, but still, it seems like a no-brainer to me… does anyone know if LD has something akin to a “no-trade” clause in his contract?

  48. MasterShake says:

    Hey Ives, I love coming here to discuss games while they are being played. However, when I was following MLS opening night, I didnt want to hear results for other games…i think it would be a good idea to have different posts for different mls teams.

  49. Dominghosa says:

    Great to see the young imported talent produce. And to have Claudio Lopez score with a team he’s been with for about two weeks is impressive.

    The long offseason trip the Galaxy took has taken a toll on the team. They were tired. I wouldn’t just blame the players and how bad they are. The long arduous traveling in the offseason also didn’t help.

  50. JSquaredNY says:

    I’m not buying the hype that Christman is getting so far. We’re only one game in and he had a charity, rebound goal and blew a 1-on-1 breakaway by shooting at Onstad.

  51. Joseph D'Hippolito says:

    Expect the Galaxy to stay 14th in Ives’ power rankings for the rest of the season. The Gals have no speed, no depth, no cohesion and no dependable experience on defense. The only reason Xavier is in the league is that the Gals were desperate and he was a free transfer (Note to Lexi: Don’t trust free transfers from mid-level Premiership teams).

    Don’t expect Gullit to be fired. He has too big a job on his hands and too many adjustments to make. Don’t expect Lalas to be fired, either (though he certainly deserves to be, since he’s the one who has the scortched earth philosophy on player transactions); he’s too useful to AEG as a corporate tool.

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: The Gals will finish last in the conference, won’t win 10 games and will concede a minimum of 60 goals.

    Thursday night’s prediction. San Jose 2, Gals 0.

    BTW, Fred, “toolbox” as a nickname for the Home Depot Center is great!

  52. Ben says:

    ok these are last years numbers but behind the “big 3″ only Klein and X to a part delivered. This was mentioned aswell in other columms today and is spot on.

    Becks 415k (5.5 M $)

    Donovan 415k (900k)

    Ruiz 325k

    Vanney 237k

    Klein 188k

    Xavier 156k

    Buddle 150k

    Vagenas 132k

    Jazic 115k

  53. alex says:

    Columbus is way too high. As a TFC, fan i can simply say those have to be the two worst teams in MLS at this point. The level of technical skill was bordering on negative.

    The Crew might look better once their singings on the field, and my team unfortunately is just hopeless. If you ever wanted proof the tactics in the championship and league one suck, that was it.

  54. Patrick says:

    So, let me get this right… Chicago has two shots on goal all game (Yes, that’s right, TWO!) and you have them ranked 8th? Were you even watching the games? RSL outplayed Chicago every moment of that match except for the one luck/random bounce that Blanco got in extra time. Give me a break, Ives!

  55. Mark says:

    Colorado was impressive as the started a bunch of reserve players due to injury, and they did still well. Of course, it was against the Galaxy…

    With that said, man has Hercules Gomez’s stock fallen since he came on as a reserve even though a bunch of players were hurt. Damn shame…

  56. Ives says:

    Patrick, I appreciate your opinion but I could do without the “Were you even watching the games attitude.” RSL played well and Chicago didn’t play that well but I’m not going to catapult RSL over Chicago when they were the home team that dropped points against a Fire team that underperformed. That’s not how any rankings should work. By that standard I suppose you would rank Colorado ahead of Houston and D.C. United. You might, I won’t.

    Now, if RSL beats Chivas USA, or even ties Chivas USA, then I’ll move them up.

  57. Patrick says:

    Ives – no offense intended. It was more exasperation than “attitude.” I appreciate your blog and contribution to the sport. However, I would rank Colorado over DC United & Houston because they won and those teams didn’t. If Power Rankings are based off a weekly performance, then Colorado deserves credit (even if they wiped the floor with a scattered Galaxy opponent). Houston is a mess and New England exploited every one of their weaknesses, and while I think D.C. United will be in the top 4 at the end of the season, right now – they are not more deserving. It’s not about reputation or last year’s performance – it’s about Week #1 and RSL was better than Chicago during that match. The stats don’t lie. I guess as Ron Burgundy says: Agree to disagree.

  58. Justin O says:

    Patrick,

    I don’t think you are making sense. If Derby County draw one week and Arsenal lose, does that mean Derby should be ranked ahead of Arsenal in the following week’s rankings? Rankings that only reflect that week’s performance would seem to me a pretty pointless excercise.

    Team’s have good weeks, bad weeks, and so-so weeks. Rankings are there to assess where a team fits in the big picture in the opinion of the person doing the ranking. One week out of a 30-week season should not mean that much.

  59. OZ fan says:

    Wizard forwads looked really good and keep in mind Piojo (Lopez) just joined the team and has had limited practice time.

    Also, who is this Eddie Johnson people keep on mentioning?

  60. Patrick says:

    Justin –

    Your logic is correct if you’re talking about Week 14 in a 30 week season. But Week #1 in a 30 week season it makes absolute sense. There’s not a season long body of work to judge a team by – it’s one week. RSL outplayed and was a stronger team than Chicago during the first game of the season.

    If Colorado loses next week & Houston / DC dominate, god knows CO should move down and the Dynamo / DV should move up. However, all I read is all the reason why Chicago deserve to be higher due to random excuses (bad pitch, on the road, earned luck), yet RSL is not afforded that same luxury.

  61. edub says:

    Just to let all of you know… the “Rice-Eccles pitch is terrible and RSL has practiced there while Chicago hadn’t” argument is wrong. Though it is the worst pitch in the league, RSL has only trained there twice this preseason (and Chicago actually got one session in there prior to the game.) Sure, RSL will have to prove that they are improved and this is not just a one-week occurrence before they significantly move up, but they were easily the best team on that field on Saturday and arguing otherwise would simply be ludicrous.

  62. realslfan says:

    Before you give RSL too much of an advantage on their home turf, remember that well over half of their senior roster have played less than 1/2 a season on it, and several starters last week played their first game on the turf. I’m not sure where the advantage is.