MLS Power Rankings: Red Bulls still on top, barely

A high-scoring weekend moved several teams up Soccer America's MLS Power Rankings, but unbeaten New York hung on to the top spot.

A 1-1 tie with the Galaxy was just enough to keep the unbeaten Red Bulls on top.

Surging D.C. United, which like the Red Bulls have notched 11 points from their last five games, took over second place and there’s a tight logjam of teams just behind the third-place Galaxy. Two losses in the last three games have dropped the Whitecaps into sixth place.

MLS Week 8: Results
April 26
New York 1, LA Galaxy 1 Highlights
Orlando City 0, Toronto FC 2  Highlights
Seattle 1, Portland 0 Highlights
April 25
New England 4, Real Salt Lake 0  Highlights
Houston 4 Sporting KC Highlights
Columbus 4, Philadelphia 1  Highlights
Vancouver 1, D.C. United 2  Highlights
April 24
Colorado 1, FC Dallas 1  Highlights
Chicago 1, New York City FC 0 Highlights
Only MLS results are incorporated into the Power Rankings. Included after the current ranking is the team’s record and ranking last week.

1. NY RED BULLS (3-0-3), 1. A great bounce off the head of Felipe earned the Red Bulls a 1-1 tie with the Galaxy and maintained their unbeaten record. They held 60.7 percent of the possession and completed 78 percent of their passes and took 14 shots, half of which were blocked. They’ve conceded only one goal at home this season but will be hard-pressed this week on both fronts: they host the Rapids Wednesday and play at New England Saturday for a stretch of three games in seven days.

2. D.C. UNITED (4-1-2), 3. Travis Worra got the call when Andrew Dykstra was injured and the backup to the backup keeper debuted in a 2-1 victory at Vancouver. Against 10 men, United struck the winner with a Chris Rolfe goal. Fabian Espindola went the distance in his first game back from a six-game, and six-month, suspension from league play.

3. LA GALAXY (3-2-3), 6. A name like Bradford Jamieson IV deserves a special setting for his first professional goal, which he claimed with a cutback move and sharp shot very reminiscent of many scored by teammate Robbie Keane, who sat out a 1-1 tie with New York Sunday. If not for a weird bounce by which New York scored, the Galaxy might have earned its third shutout.

4. SEATTLE (4-2-1), 7. In a fourth straight game against the Timbers, Clint Dempsey got a goal. This one came courtesy of a shot bobbled by keeper Adam Kwarasey and by poking it over the goal line Seattle captured a 1-0 victory. In the absence of Defender of the Year Chad Marshall, the Sounders blanked their bitter rivals.

5. NEW ENGLAND (4-2-2), 8. A goal and assist for attacker Juan Agudelo isn’t unusual but a similar stat line for holding mid Scott Caldwell certainly is. Both of them and many teammates were impressive in a 4-0 demolition of RSL that extended the Revs’ unbeaten run to six games. Kelyn Rowe came off the bench for the first time this season and picked up an assist as the competition for spots intensifies.

6. VANCOUVER (5-3-1), 2. A second caution to Matias Laba in the 42nd minute proved to be too much for the ‘Caps to overcome in a 2-1 home loss to United even though Pedro Morales and Mauro Rosales unleashed some dizzying combinations. Morales scored Vancouver’s goal and Rosales, making his first start since injuring an ankle against Chicago in mid-March, hit the goalpost as the ‘Caps outshot United, 16-8. Keeper David Ousted came up with a few more excellent saves.

7. FC DALLAS (4-2-2), 5. FCD took another step away from back-to-back defeats in which it was outscored 7-1 by tying Colorado, 1-1, despite losing Blas Perez to a red card in the 59th minute. Fabian Castillo’s scorching runs are less predictable and more productive; his ball to Mauro Diaz deservedly earned FCD its goal. Dan Kennedy looked a little shaky in his return but that rust should shake off soon enough.

8. REAL SALT LAKE (2-2-3), 4. Ugly and brutal loss to the Revs leaves RSL goalless in its last 315 minutes. It plays three games in the next nine days.

9. SPORTING KANSAS CITY (2-2-4), 8. He’s more prone to curl home a free kick than belt a laser from distance, yet with SKC trailing 4-3 in stoppage time of an extraordinary match, Benny Feilhaber tattooed a shot by which it ended 4-4. The poor defending will haunt head coach Peter Vermes but his team showed great spirit after a heartbreaking last-second loss to L.A. the previous week.

10. COLUMBUS (3-2-2), 12. Crew SC ruthlessly rolled to its second straight big win by pulverizing the Union, 4-1. Ethan Finlay led the onslaught by scoring two goals and assisting on a third, and another fine display from Kei Kamara earned him a goal and an assist. Head coach Gregg Berhalter also cited an excellent game from Federico Higuain, who didn’t get on the scoresheet.

11. SAN JOSE (3-4-0), 10. The Quakes got the Impact bye and return to action with games against RSL Friday and Houston next Tuesday (Tuesday?).

12. HOUSTON (2-2-4), 11. These are the games that drive coaches mad. Houston rallied from conceding a goal in the second minute to score three in a row but twice gave up the lead and was caught in stoppage time. Giles Barnes bagged two goals yet costly errors like the Alex Lopez giveaway that gave one to SKC tarnished Houston’s play.

13. CHICAGO (3-3-0), 16. The Fire is cooking. Okay, beating an expansion team. 1-0, at home isn’t worthy of a major bonfire, and the cause was helped by a terrible goalkeeping gaffe and NYCFC red card, but goalscorer David Accam is turning into a handful and shutouts are shutouts.

14. TORONTO FC (2-4-0), 17. TFC also needed an expansion team to rectify its issues and with a pair of clinical goals from Jozy Altidore TFC ended a four-game losing streak against Orlando City, 2-0. Another winnable road game comes Saturday at Philadelphia.

15. ORLANDO CITY SC (2-4-2), 13. The Lions looked lost and listless despite holding the ball for much of the time, and aside from some spark provided by the subs were second-best to TFC. They play a friendly this week and thus have a long time to prepare for a May 8 home date with the Revs.

16. PORTLAND (2-3-3), 14. A match nearly even in shots (11-10 Portland) and possession (51.1 percent in favor of Seattle) still produced Portland’s third loss in the last five games. Fanendo Adi came off the bench to take three shots, one of which hit the crossbar. Diego Valeri watched from the bench.

17. COLORADO (1-2-4), 18. Nick LaBrocca kept his nerve to knock home an equalizer as the opposing goalkeeper crashed into him, and thus did the Rapids notch a 1-1 tie with FCD Dallas in front of an announced crowd of 12,944. They get to experience both coasts in the next few days: at New York Wednesday and in Los Angeles Saturday.

18. NEW YORK CITY FC (1-4-3), 15. Maybe NYCFC fans will look back on this as the low point of their expansion season. Keeper Ryan Meara, taking over in goal for a suspended Josh Saunders, pushed a ball back into play to be walked into the net by Accam, who then drew a red-card foul from Andrew Jacobson that left NYCFC down to 10 men. Injuries forced head coach Jason Kreis to make a pair of substitutions in the first half. Meara played a blinder after this gaffe to keep his team in the game.

19. MONTREAL (0-2-2), 20. Destiny awaits in the Olympic Stadium on Wednesday, after which the Impact can contemplate what kind of a team it can be this season over 34 games.

20. PHILADELPHIA (1-5-3), 19. The Union is not inept in front of goal (10 goals scored) but it can’t stop anybody. A 4-1 mauling in Columbus upped its goals allowed total to 17, five more than any other MLS team. Collectively and individually, Philly didn’t measure up and should expect a harsh reception if it can’t get off to a good start at home Saturday against TFC.
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