MLS Week 22: A Look Back

RichardsConvey (ISIphotos.com)

Photo by Howard C. Smith/ISIphotos.com

By AVI CREDITOR

As the Major League Soccer season hits the final stretch, some contenders are rounding into form while an early-season favorite is sputtering to the finish line.

With its 0-0 draw at Columbus, FC Dallas set a Major League Soccer record this past week by extending its road unbeaten streak to 10 games (3-0-7). 

New York avenged an earlier loss to San Jose by turning in a fine 2-0 performance, Seattle won the Ljungberg Cup with Fredy Montero's late winner and the Colorado Rapids continued their playoff push with a thorough beating of 10-man Houston.

While those teams turned in strong performances, the Los Angeles Galaxy continued its run of inconsistency, as the once-unbeatable side suffered a shocking 2-0 loss at home to the Kansas City Wizards, who had just one road victory in nine tries before Saturday night's match.

Here's a rundown of all of this past week's MLS games with links to the highlights:

Columbus Crew 0, FC Dallas 0

In addition to extending its road unbeaten streak, Schellas Hyndman's squad extended its overall unbeaten streak to 12 matches, with rookie defender Zach Lloyd coming up big with a goal-line clearance of a Guillermo Barros Schelotto shot midway through the second half. HIGHLIGHTS

Toronto FC 0, Real Salt Lake 0

After both teams suffered tough CONCACAF Champions League losses, Real Salt Lake managed to squeak out a point at BMO Field, as Stefan Frei came up huge to secure the draw for the Reds. HIGHLIGHTS

New York Red Bulls 2, San Jose Earthquakes 0

Theirry Henry scored his first MLS goal and Dane Richards put on a tremendous display on the wing, creating loads of problems for the Earthquakes, who had beaten New York, 4-0, earlier in the season. HIGHLIGHTS

Philadelphia Union 2, New England Revolution 1

Second-half substitute Justin Mapp put the dagger in New England's playoff hopes with a stoppage-time winner after Jack McInerney found the equalizer in the 82nd minute, as the Union found some rare road success. Cory Gibbs' 40th-minute red card put the Revolution a man down for the final 50 minutes of the match. HIGHLIGHTS

Colorado Rapids 3, Houston Dynamo 0

An early Lovel Palmer red card set the tone for the blowout, as Jamie Smith, Omar Cummings and Conor Casey each tallied for the Rapids, who find themselves four points clear of ninth-place Toronto in the playoff race. HIGHLIGHTS

Seattle Sounders FC 2, Chicago Fire 1

Fredy Montero's stoppage-time winner gave the Sounders the edge in Freddie Ljungberg's return to Qwest Field. John Thorrington's first-half penalty kick gave the Fire the early lead, but Montero bagged a brace to boost his MVP hopes and deal Chicago a major blow. HIGHLIGHTS

Kansas City Wizards 2, Los Angeles Galaxy 0

The Galaxy's firm grasp on the Supporters' Shield continues to slip after Davy Arnaud and Jimmy Conrad each scored to give the Wizards just their second road victory. The Wizards trail eighth-place San Jose by just three points in the league table. HIGHLIGHTS

Chivas USA 1, D.C. United 0

Justin Braun's first-half goal was all Chivas needed to beat a reserve-laden D.C. side that is focused more on Wednesday's U.S. Open Cup semifinal against Columbus than it is on its failed league campaign. HIGHLIGHTS

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What surprised you the most this week? Do you think Montero deserves to be league MVP? Who do you think ends up winning the Supporters' Shield?

Share your thoughts below.

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20 Responses to MLS Week 22: A Look Back

  1. attenborough says:

    I would like to extend a hand of acerbic congratulations toward Carlos de los Cobos. It takes a man of true resolve to wait until the 85th minute to make a sub in a tie ballgame.

  2. Brent McD. says:

    great photo!

  3. scott says:

    united can’t buy a goal…

  4. Will-SBI says:

    A few things:
    1) I’m pretty sure I’m taller than Dane Richards, lol. Definitely not faster though…!

    2) Why has Dane Richards not latched on in Europe or elsewhere? Probably the same reason as other players – I’m going to guess that his skill is there, but is probably VERY inconsistent. Shame. (although he is “only” 26)

    3) Perhaps Red Bulls’ defense is coming together finally? If so, the championship is theirs to lose. In my opinion.

  5. Hopper says:

    Answer to No. 2: Richards is very fast, but his touch and vision leave something to be desired. That’s why he’s in MLS.

  6. Some thoughts on some of the games I watched:

    The San Jose backline needs to get healthy fast! They were really missing Corrales, Hernandez, Leitch, and even Opara who is injured. I want to know why Cornell Glen continues to start ahead of Ryan Johnson. Glen can’t finish. Props to NY for some great attacking football, the midfield really controlled the tempo of the match, and Ream is looking better with each game. Bouna scares me…kind of shaky.

    Nice to see Philly get a road win.

    What the hell is going on in Houston?

    What the hell happened to LA?

    Freddy Montero is the most in form striker at the moment, great stoppage time header.

  7. rory says:

    It looks like a still shot from a pepsie commercial! “Hey, it’s a street party and we’re all drinking pepsie! Now lets all jump!”

  8. Will-SBI says:

    Yea, the announcer did mention that his “decision-making” has been an issue.

  9. joe k says:

    he has the touch sometimes, his run through for the goal at the end of the first half was wonderful.

    his biggest weakness is his inability to cross the ball effectively. even during his resurgence this year (starting with that game against mancity), he’s only had a couple of effective crosses.

    speaking to his vision, he does often try to run through a defender than look for an outlet. but he’s getting better at that for sure.

  10. Chicago MIke says:

    That Chicago Seattle game was something else….. like 20 fouls each, and another 40 each that didn’t get called, great referee job. I was thinking after first ten mins that there was going to be at least red card.

  11. ericJ says:

    I had the same feeling. He let the game get out of hand I think.

  12. Vik says:

    I dunno bout the RBNY defense. The team was very good going forward, but let the quakes a couple of really good looks at goal.

  13. Charles says:

    There had to be something wrong with him, no good players in MLS huh ?

  14. CJ Brown says:

    I’m shocked, as all Fire fans are, to see Justin Mapp playing like he is actually awake. What a huge waste of talent he has been.

  15. k says:

    Great game in Seattle with a lot of hard nose play on both sides but didn’t think it got out of hand so glad there were no red cards handed out. Montero proved that this is his team and his pitch and Seattle kept the right Fred; if he keeps up this form he will for sure be in the running for MVP.

  16. Emerald_City_Jason says:

    Yeah, Arlo White mentioned that the ref we had is usually the fourth. Exceedingly questionable hand-ball call, a blown non-call on the tackle of Alvaro in the box, and…the Sounders got away with about 7 fouls, too. Just a poorly reffed match all-around. Fortunately, I don’t think even the most ardent Fire fan could argue the final outcome. Chicago looked absolutely overwhelmed the last 25 minutes or so, and Keller was never really tested in the run of play.

  17. jim b says:

    How bout those wizards?

  18. Hopper says:

    The dude was asking why leagues around the world aren’t paying attention to Dane Richards, and his poor touch and vision are why. I never said there are no good players in MLS. Put your reading glasses on.

  19. bandeeto says:

    Being from the west they’re just one of those teams I find it hard to care about… though i’m always glad when the scum loose.

  20. Scott A says:

    Dane’s right foot in this picture.. is that natural?