SBI MLS Power Rankings: Week 6

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And then there were two.

The Columbus Crew and Chicago Fire have pulled away from the field after six weeks of the 2008 MLS season and both teams are doing it with disciplined defending and dynamic midfield play.

The Crew downed the Kansas City Wizards for their fourth straight win while the Fire dominated the New England Revolution for the second time this young season, doing so at Gillette Stadium to the delight of many a Fire fan.

The two East powers sit atop this week’s SBI MLS Power Rankings while three teams expected to be near the top remain in the bottom five. D.C. lost again while Chivas USA and Houston played each other to one of the uglier scoreless draws you will see.

This week’s MLS Power Rankings are brought to you by Chicago Soccer, the official soccer apparel and gear sponsor of Soccer By Ives. Whether its jerseys, boots or gloves, Chicago Soccer has your soccer gear needs covered.

Now, onto this week’s SBI MLS Power Rankings:

SBI MLS Power Rankings

1. (Last week- 1) Columbus Crew (5-1)

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Dynamic attack is bolstered by an improving defense that will be the key to Crew staying at the top of the East.

2. ( 3) Chicago Fire (4-1-1)

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John Thorrington is turning into a star and the Fire defense is on a roll even though C.J. Brown, Dasan Robinson and Wilman Conde aren’t a part of it.

3. (2) Toronto FC (3-2-1)

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Disappointing tie is one thing, failing to score in the run of play is a cause for concern (TFC has one goal in the run of play in three matches and that was a deflected ball that Amado Guevara put home.)

4. (4) New England Revolution (3-2-2)

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Makeshift squad just can’t find consistency. Twellman and Ralston can’t get back soon enough.

5. (5) FC Dallas (2-1-3)

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Hoops have been shut out two straight games. Is Juan Toja playing hurt or is he just ineffective?

6. (7) New York Red Bulls (2-1-2)

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Tie at Toronto was impressive for Red Bulls team that could have its full starting lineup for the first time all season when it faced the LA Galaxy on Saturday.

7. (6) Kansas City Wizards (3-2-2)

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Claudio Lopez is a leader and skillful player, but a true goal-scorer he isn’t. The Wizards need to find one fast because they have one goal in the run of play in five matches.

8. (10)  Colorado Rapids (3-3)

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Christian Gomez showed what he can do when motivated and he was definitely motivated to show D.C. United it was a mistake to trade him.

9. (9) Los Angeles Galaxy (2-2-2)

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David Beckham and the Galaxy showed some heart to come back from two goals down, but can the defense not put the squad in a deep hole for once?

10. (8) D.C. United (2-4)

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Growing pains from a team with so many new players is normal, but United’s struggles are looking less like chemistry and more like incompatibility.

11. (11) Real Salt Lake (1-3-2)

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The offense finally produces some goals only to have the defense squander the lead.

12. (12) Chivas USA (1-3-2)

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The offense keeps struggling but Brad Guzan playing well is a good and sorely-needed sign.

13. (13) San Jose Earthquakes (1-3-1)

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The shutout was good for the defense but one shot on goal in a home game is pretty pathetic.

14. (14) Houston Dynamo (0-2-4)

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Six games, zero wins. I realize Houston is talented but you can’t put the Dynamo anywhere but 14th place.

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18 Responses to SBI MLS Power Rankings: Week 6

  1. TCompton says:

    How DC united is not last, I have no idea. They’ve won 2 lopsided games and have looked absolutely lost in the other 4. They’re not playing like a team, and I’d even go on to say that the games they won, dispite the number of goals scored, were just as ugly as their losses.

    They look awful. It’s a sad day to be a DC United supported. :(

  2. Haig says:

    That 4-1 RSL win was a very inflated scoreline. The game was essentially even– DC may have been a little outplayed– for over an hour, and then RSL collapsed.

  3. TCompton says:

    So far, it looks like teams with strong central midfielders are able to deconstruct DC United pretty easily.

    Real – Kyle Beckerman

    Crew – Guillermo Scholetto

    Rapids – Christain Gomez

    I don’t remember the Kansas City game, but I’m pretty sure we were beat by midfielders finding seams in our defense.

    Perhaps DC misses Carroll more than Gomez.

  4. Steve says:

    TCompton meet Cuauhtemoc Blanco!

    Have a nice week!

  5. EDB says:

    Emilio also looks terrible for DC. Maybe its because they wouldn’t redo his deal, or maybe last year was luck. who knows, but it may be time to try other people upfront.

  6. Tom says:

    Yes it was a mistake for DCU to not sign Gomez. I’m just glad that he went to Colorado instead of NE or somewhere in the east.

  7. Jess says:

    Ives, I’m a Galaxy fan and I fully acknowledge their weaknesses. Do I think they are the 9th best team in the league? Maybe. But I can’t believe you have the Red Bulls ranked above the Wizards, and Colorado. I think its a toss up between the Bulls and the Galaxy. I guess we’ll find out on Saturday.

  8. Drew says:

    Chicago is +8 in goal differential, Colombus is +4. Obviously you have to give Colombus the #1 spot, they deserve it, but it’s an interesting stat nonetheless.

  9. RapidsMan says:

    I would put the Galaxy above the Rapids. After the first game of the season La has played much better. Do not judge the Rapids by yesterday’s game, DC United have not won in Colorado since 2000 and they were littered with injuries. I love my Rapids, but they are not playing better than LA.

  10. TCompton says:

    Thankfully, I’m skipping the Chicago game. The last thing I want to see is United losing to Chicago at home… AGAIN.

  11. aristotle says:

    I don’t want to say D.C. United look bad, but I’m pretty sure they will be relegated this year. I’m hoping the Rochester Raging Rhinos will take their place. Maybe Houston should go down with them, but I think they will recover much more than D.C. United will.

  12. aristotle says:

    This is so funny. Seems like just yesterday a lot of people were suggesting the only team that had an offense that was close to being as bad as San Jose’s was Columbus, now they are ranked number one and have a “dynamic attack”.

    Columbus fans don’t go nuts on me but even though Columbus won their game this week, the game was definitely a cause for concern for them. They scored one goal on mistakes and the other by luck. Their inability to finish chances was very poor, and falling back and playing defense with a man advantage, a 2-0 lead, and playing at home was disgraceful. I went from rooting for Columbus to keep their streak going to rooting for K.C. to come back and humiliate them. K.C. didn’t deserve to lose. It was only awful finishing on their part too that caused them to lose, not to mention a clear penalty that wasn’t called. I think Sigi Schmid and his brilliant strategy will eventually bring Columbus crashing to earth.

  13. Modibo says:

    aristotle all that might be true about Columbus, but I’m reminded of the old saying that good teams are also lucky teams.

    (Play cheesy crystal ball music here) We need more time, more games to see what will happen…

  14. chris l says:

    um arisototole…… mls doesnt do relegation

  15. chris l says:

    the usl teams dont have enough money to be in mls. also about tfc, they almost dont even need to score from open play if they have guys like laurent robert and amado guevara standing over all the freekicks.

  16. aristotle says:

    Um chris…there’s no relegation in MLS you say? Hmmmm. Hey, how do you pronounce arisototole?

    Actually, I was using relegation as a kind of metaphor to describe how bad they are. You know, if there was relegation in MLS they would be relegated, that kind of thing.

  17. VD says:

    Houston has played 4 of 6 on the road. Columbus has played 4 of 6 at home. It will be interesting to see what happens when this is evened out because I can’t believe Houston is this bad

  18. Brant says:

    I think DC is caught in a convergence of several problems: Brian Carroll is a HUGE loss – look at how settled the Columbus midfield is these days with Carroll instead of Rozenthal, or Vasquez, or Grabavoy, or pretty much anyone else over the last 3 years since Simon Elliot left.

    Second, they’ve played a LOT of games already (so has Houston) with the Champions Cup and Houston had the Pan-Pacific, too. MLS squads aren’t deep enough for that many games, especially that early in the season.

    How well will Columbus play on the road? We’ll see. On the plus side, their first road game is San Jose, so they should be able to ease into the road trip a bit… :)

    GO CREW!