SBI MLS Power Rankings: Week Ten

DynamoGalaxy (Getty)

By IVES GALARCEP

The Los Angeles Galaxy looked poised for a long run atop the SBI MLS Power Rankings, but the Houston Dynamo stepped up to remind us that we can never take results for granted. Especially when we are talking about returning MLS Cup finalists.

The Dynamo recorded their first road win since last summer, and their first road win vs. the Galaxy in seven tries to boost themselves back up the  rankings after a tough run of form in previous weeks.  Now the Dynamo are in a tie for first place in the East, and enjoying their best start to the season in several years.

The previously red-hot Portland Timbers slipped a bit in the rankings, after their disappointing home draw vs. the New England Revolution. Caleb Porter’s side will have a great chance to climb right back up the list with a win against new No. 1, FC Dallas, on Wednesday night.

Here are the latest SBI MLS Power Rankings:

SBI MLS Power Rankings (Week Ten)

1. (Last week- 2) FC DALLAS (6-1-2)

DAL_Primary_COL

LAST WEEK- Bye Week.

THIS WEEK- vs. Portland on Wednesday; vs. D.C. United on Saturday.

OUTLOOK- The week off should help Dallas deal with some nagging injury issues, including George John’s status. Portland will provide a very good test for the Dallas midfield, and Michel’s match-up with Diego Valeri will be an important one for the FCD defense to try and contain Portland’s high-octane attack.

————————-

2. (3) MONTREAL IMPACT (5-1-2)

Logo Impact MLS

LAST WEEK- beat Toronto FC, 6-0, last Wednesday (Canadian Championship); tied San Jose Earthquakes, 2-2, last Saturday.

THIS WEEK- at New York on Wednesday; vs. Real Salt Lake on Saturday.

OUTLOOK- Their mauling of TFC in the Canadian Championship was a milestone moment for the club, but they saw their old on first place in the East vanish after becoming the latest team to squander a late lead vs. San Jose. Their trip to New York will tell us quite a bit, particularly about their defense, which looks a little more vulnerable after blowing a two-goal lead to the Earthquakes.

————————-

3. (6)  HOUSTON DYNAMO (5-2-2)

HOU_Primary_COL

LAST WEEK- beat Los Angeles Galaxy, 1-0, last Sunday.

THIS WEEK- at D.C. United on Wednesday; vs. Sporting Kansas City on Sunday.

OUTLOOK- Snapped their recent funk with an inspired team effort in shutting down the Galaxy. Kofi Sarkodie’s growth as a player continues, while Andrew Driver made it clear he is ready for an important role with the Dynamo. Between Driver and Giles Barnes, Dom Kinnear will have some tough decisions to make in terms of settling on his Best XI when Brad Davis returns, and eventually when Omar Cummings is healthy.

————————-

4. (5)  SPORTING KANSAS CITY (5-3-2)

SportingKClogo

LAST WEEK- beat Chivas USA, 4-0, last Sunday.

THIS WEEK- vs. Seattle on Wednesday; at Houston Dynamo on Sunday.

OUTLOOK- Graham Zusi put on a show and helped Sporting KC snap out of their mini-slump. As much as you can point to the fact that Chivas USA is in terrible form, the fact remains Sporting KC looked sharp. They will face some tough tests this week as the play host to a Seattle team growing increasingly desperate for points, and a Houston team that has been their kryptonite in recent years.

————————-

5. (1) LOS ANGELES GALAXY (4-2-2)

LA_Primary_COL

LAST WEEK- lost to Houston Dynamo, 1-0, last Sunday.

THIS WEEK- at Vancouver on Saturday.

OUTLOOK- Yes, you can make the point that Robbie Keane’s absence hurt their attack considerably, but the fact remains the Galaxy had more than enough firepower to find the net at least once at home, even against a tough Dynamo team. Landon Donovan isn’t likely to take penalties in the future, with Keane and Mike Magee viable options for spot-kick duty. LA should be able to regroup against a struggling Vancouver side.

————————-

6. (4) PORTLAND TIMBERS (3-1-5)

TimbersLogo

LAST WEEK- tied New England Revolution, 0-0, last Thursday.

THIS WEEK- at FC Dallas on Wednesday; vs. Chivas USA on Sunday.

OUTLOOK- Had to come away disappointed with last week’s draw, but you can’t argue the fact that the Timbers played well against New England. Sharpness in the final third remains a bit of an issue, but the bigger concern in Portland is the centerback situation. New signing Pa Modou Kah is likely to need some time to adapt, which could give young defender Andrew Jean-Baptiste a chance to stake his claim to a starting spot.

————————-

7. (7) NEW YORK RED BULLS (5-4-2)

NY_Primary_COL

LAST WEEK- beat Columbus Crew, 1-0, last Saturday.

THIS WEEK- at Montreal on Wednesday; at New England on Saturday.

OUTLOOK- Luis Robles turned in a strong performance to fend off calls for a goalkeeper change in New York. At least for the time being. Ryan Meara’s impending return will force Mike Petke to consider a change, though Robles probably bought himself some more time with his outing. With Roy Miller continuing to play well, how long before someone comes along with an offer for Heath Pearce?

————————-

8. (10) REAL SALT LAKE (4-4-2)

RSL_Primary_COL

LAST WEEK- beat Vancouver Whitecaps, 2-0, last Saturday.

THIS WEEK- at New England on Wednesday; at Montreal on Saturday.

OUTLOOK- Joao Plata stepped with some key plays in RSL’s victory, and is making his new team look like thieves after landing him for peanuts in an off-season trade. An East Coast road trip awaits, and goals won’t come easy when they visit the Revs and Impact, especially if Saborio isn’t back yet.

————————-

9. (11)  PHILADELPHIA UNION (3-3-3)

UNI_Primary_COL

LAST WEEK- tied Seattle Sounders, 2-2, last Saturday.

THIS WEEK- at Chicago on Saturday.

OUTLOOK- Danny Cruz is a much-maligned figure in Philadelphia by fans who don’t get why he starts and Sebastien LeToux ride the pine, but Cruz helped put those questions to bed with his two-goal effort. Now the Union prepare for a match against the Fire that will serve as a showcase of sorts for centerback Bakary Soumare, who is set to start for his former team, and the team eager to trade for him, due to Jeff Parke being injured.

———————–

10. (8) COLUMBUS CREW (3-3-3)

CLB_Primary_COL

LAST WEEK-lost to New York Red Bulls, 1-0, last Saturday.

THIS WEEK- vs. Colorado on Saturday.

OUTLOOK- The Crew will rue their missed chances, and the quality soccer they showed in their loss to the Red Bulls. They must now regroup and take on a surprisingly dangerous Colorado side that has been grinding out results despite a plethora of injuries. The match should be a good chance for Federico Higuain and Jairo Arrieta to get back to their scoring ways.

————————-

11. (13) COLORADO RAPIDS (3-4-2)

RapidsLogo

LAST WEEK- Beat Toronto FC, 1-0, last Saturday.

THIS WEEK- at Columbus on Saturday.

OUTLOOK- Another victory for a Rapids team that is just finding a way to secure points in the face of some serious adversity. Clint Irwin continues to be one of the stories of the season while Edson Buddle finding the net has to be a seriously encouraging sign for a team that will need Buddle to have a big year.

————————-

12. (12) SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES (2-3-5)

SJ_Primary_COL

LAST WEEK- tied Montreal Impact, 2-2, last Saturday.

THIS WEEK- vs. Toronto FC on Wednesday; at Seattle on Saturday.

OUTLOOK- Adam Jahn keeps on impressing and the Earthquakes rookie is making a very good case for remaining a starter even when Alan Gordon and Steven Lenhart return from their suspensions. As impressive as the comeback vs. Montreal was, the reality is the Earthquakes haven’t looked close their old dominant self yet, and they are continuing to drop points at home. They have a good chance to rack up the points with a home game vs. TFC and a trip to Seattle to face a Sounders side still trying to figure this season out.

————————-

13. (9) CHIVAS USA (3-4-2)

CHV_Primary_COL

LAST WEEK-  lost to Sporting Kansas City, 4-0, last Sunday.

THIS WEEK- at Portland on Sunday.

OUTLOOK- The wheels have fallen off the Chelis bandwagon, and Dan Kennedy’s red card means the Goats will head into a very tough match against the Timbers without their best player. It’s the kind of game they seem destined to lose, but as we have seen so many times in MLS, those sort of matches tend to not go the way we expect them to go.

————————-

14. (16) NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION (2-3-3)

NE_Primary_COL

LAST WEEK- Tied Portland Timbers, 0-0, last Thursday.

THIS WEEK- vs. Real Salt Lake on Wednesday; vs. New York Red Bulls on Saturday.

OUTLOOK- A very impressive defensive effort by a patch-work back-line helped the Revs escape Portland with a well-earned point. That draw should give them some confidence heading into a home stand against two tough opponents. Getting A.J. Soares back would be big, but what Jay Heaps really needs is for Saer Sene to return to full health so we can see a Jerry Bengtson-Sene forward tandem.

————————-

15. (14) VANCOUVER WHITECAPS (2-4-3)

WhitecapsLogo

LAST WEEK- Lost to Real Salt Lake, 2-0, last Saturday.

THIS WEEK- vs. Los Angeles Galaxy on Saturday.

OUTLOOK- The White caps have won three games in their past 20 MLS matches. THREE. At a certain point you wonder if Martin Rennie is on the hot seat, and whether the Whitecaps will give him a full season in charge if things don’t turn around soon.

————————-

16. (15) CHICAGO FIRE (2-5-1)

CHI_primary_COL

LAST WEEK- Bye Week.

THIS WEEK- vs. Philadelphia Union on Saturday.

OUTLOOK- A week off should help the Fire, but if it doesn’t bring Arne Friedrich any closer to seeing the field then you wonder just how much. Chicago will get an up-close look at a defender they are considering as a replacement for Friedrich in Bakary Soumare, in a match that should also give Sherjill MacDonald plenty of motivation as he tries to hold on to a starting job that should be slipping away.

————————-

17. (17) SEATTLE SOUNDERS (1-3-3)

SEA_Primary_COL

LAST WEEK- tied Philadelphia Union, 2-2, last Saturday.

THIS WEEK- at Sporting Kansas City on Wednesday; vs. San Jose Earthquakes on Saturday.

OUTLOOK- A road point without Osvaldo Alonso is big for the Sounders, even if they would have preferred three points, and even though it was an ugly game. The upcoming week will really tell us whether the Sounders can turn things around because a trip to Kansas City will be very tough, but a home game vs. San Jose is a golden chance for three points.

————————-

18. (18) TORONTO FC (1-4-4)

TOR_Primary_COL

LAST WEEK- Lost to Montreal, 6-0, on Wednesday (Canadian Champion); lost to Colorado, 1-0, last Saturday.

THIS WEEK- at San Jose on Wednesday.

OUTLOOK- Talk about a forgettable week. An embarrassing Canadian Championship loss that set off an already angry fan base, followed by a forgettable showing against a short-handed Colorado side. Things appear to be going badly in a hurry, and it will be up to the TFC defense to tighten up, and Robert Earnshaw to recapture his scoring touch.

————————-

19. (19) D.C. UNITED (1-6-1)

DCU_Primary_COL

LAST WEEK- Bye Week.

THIS WEEK- vs. Houston on Wednesday; at FC Dallas on Saturday.

OUTLOOK- The stars are aligned for a win on Wednesday. D.C. United is coming off a bye, and they’re facing a Dynamo team that played on Sunday night in LA before traveling cross-country. If they can’t snatch three points under those circumstances, it is difficult to see them going to Dallas and getting anything. A two-loss week would definitely have Ben Olsen’s seat feeling extremely warm.

————————-

What do you think of this week’s power rankings? Think anyone is rated too highly? See anyone being too low?

Share your thoughts below.

This entry was posted in Featured, SBI MLS Power Rankings, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

23 Responses to SBI MLS Power Rankings: Week Ten

  1. Broadsthooligans says:

    The idea that Danny Cruz put rumours that he deserves to start of Le Toux (and Kleberson, Torres or even G. Farfan) is ridiculous. His goals look nice, but they don’t show us anything we didn’t already know about Danny Cruz. The first goal was a classic McInerney special (little skill involved, just knocking it in when it lands at your feet, what’s impressive with Jack is that it always happens to land at his feet). The second took a near perfect bounce and Danny got a chance to take a shot Gspurning had no play at because the ball was coming across the net and going over his head. Neither was particularly impressive, it’s the essence of small sample size. Cruz has shown that he has no on the ball skill. Kleberson and Torres both do. Le Toux has looked out of sorts this season, but he did the same thing in 2011 and came around. I have much more reason to trust Le Toux based on 2010 and 2011 (along with his time around the league) than I do based on one quality game from Cruz. Clearly his best game of the season, but even at that and with two goals in a minute, I still would rather have Seba or Kleberson on the field.

    • Ives Galarcep says:

      Neither LeToux or Kleberson is playing the right wing position better than Cruz, so it’s pretty silly to keep harping on the (They should be on the field over Cruz) logic. YOu have to put a TEAM out, not just 11 players regardless of position. Fact is neither Torres or Kleberson is ready to play starter minutes in MLS, and LeToux just can’t get the job done on the wing.

      • BC8 says:

        +1
        Cruz gets a brace and still gets crap, LOL…give the man his due for this match!

      • Travis says:

        While those are valid points I watched that game and Cruz had some truly terrible moments to go with those goals so I doubt he silenced all his critics. In particular his crossing/shooting in the first half was at times comical. Its hard to fault a game where a guy scores a brace but I can see why people would be frustrated with him. However to the OP, Le Toux isnt the answer out wide, he hates it out there.

        • Bean says:

          Cruz will frustrate you more then he will reward you. He is a ball of energy, but is a one-trick pony.

      • UnionTillIDie says:

        Ives, how can you say that Kleberson is not ready to play?

        There is no reason why a player of his caliber can’t go 60 mins at this point in his training with the team. The play is to sub Daniel for Kleberson, play Michael Farfan directly in front of Kleberson and Carrol, and play a 3 forward system.

        Placing Kleberson in this lineup would allow either Le Toux or Hoppenot to start out wide with JackMac on the attacking wings while Casey mans the middle. This would both solidify the Union’s attack on offense while providing enough cover on defense.

    • 2tone says:

      Le Toux was and is a one hit wonder.

      • Charles says:

        And by one hit wonder, you mean, won a championship in Seattle, played great in MLS for Seattle, then played great for Philly in MLS.

        1+1+1 = 1 hit wonder

        • 2tone says:

          Uhm, LeToux barley played for Seattle when they were in MLS. I am a Seattle supporter. Le Toux is a hard worker with decent skill; not some superstar that Philly fans have portrayed him to be. He stunk in Vancouver and in New York, and was service to requirements in Seattle.

  2. ed - houston says:

    #3 is a bit generous for Hou. but i’ll go with the flow. Here is hopipng Dallas can hold Portland at home tomorrow . You don’t hear that often from a Hou. fan.

    • Ives Galarcep says:

      It probably was, but it was either move them up and acknowledge the big win, or keep the top seven exactly the same as last week, figure’d I’d shake things up. Could have just dropped LA to two, but that was a pretty flat performance from them.

  3. 2tone says:

    Lando loses his spot kick duty for LA and the USMNT.

    I think Altidore should take over at PK duty for the Nats. He is about the only one I trust right now with PK’s.

    Dempsey is horrible at PK’s.

    Zusi has been known to bang spot kicks off of the crossbar.

    EJ, nope.

    Maybe Bradley.

    • Mig says:

      It is always interesting when a guy goes through one of these spells of missing PKs. It happens to many players no matter how good (it happened to Lampard about 4 years ago). LD has been a machine on PKs in the past and may be again in the future but there is no doubt that right now, in MLS, he should be taken off PK duty before it becomes something bigger than it is.

  4. D says:

    We Union fans do not clamor for Le Toux over Cruz. We want Kleberson, or Garfan, or Torres, or even Hoppenot to start. Le Toux has shown to possess about the same quality as Cruz, with half the speed and none of the physicality.
    We do give Cruz the credit for his goals or work this weekend, but not for his defensive lapses.

  5. Travis says:

    This week is massive for the Sounders, if they can get four points from the next two games it will have been a decent three game stretch. Heard that Martins should feature tomorrow night as well which would be a big boost.

  6. swifty says:

    LA fan here. Not saying they shudnt drop from number 1 after a home loss, but to drop to 5th after a relatively even game behind a team they beat handily two weeks ago??? Uhhh wuhhhh??

  7. Charles says:

    We are 1/4 the way through the season, Montreal has 1 loss and just beat a team 6-0.

    I wonder how many predicted that.
    Man I love MLS.

  8. dan says:

    Bit harsh for LA, I agree we sucked but sliding down 5 spots on one days result? Especially only a 1-0…

    Luckily these power rankings are meaningless

  9. Brain Guy says:

    I don’t see how Miller’s resurgence means a possible trade of Pearce. He provides quality depth at two defensive positions. What do RBNY need more than, and could get for, Pearce!

  10. Swanny says:

    Man, Houston has got some scary depth going on.

    • Bean says:

      It’s nice to have the depth, and is a reward for winning the East two seasons in a row. The extra allocation really helps. The interesting thing is that Houston does not really have a DP in the same sense as some other sides do. Kinnear has a knack for finding talent like Boniek, and the two young lions–Barnes, and Driver.