MLS Power Rankings: Big win moves RSL to top spot

Real Salt Lake turned in perhaps the most impressive road performance of the young MLS season to hand Sporting Kansas City its first loss, 2-1. New England, Seattle and Chicago got their first victories, but D.C. United, which squandered a 1-0 lead in San Jose, and Columbus stayed winless.

Week 5 Results

April 1
New England 1, NY Red Bulls 0. Highlights
 
April 2
Chicago 1, Philadelphia 0. Highlights
Colorado 1, Toronto FC 0. Highlights
Sporting Kansas City 1, Real Salt Lake 2. Highlights
FC Dallas 1, Columbus 1. Highlights
Seattle 1, Montreal 0. Highlights
LA Galaxy 0, Vancouver 0. Highlights
San Jose 1, D.C. United 1. Highlights
 
April 3
Orlando City 4, Portland 1. Highlights

The MLS Power Rankings are based solely on results of MLS league matches. Each team's rank is followed by its record and ranking last week.

1. REAL SALT LAKE (2-0-2), 3. The traditional RSL ethos of team shone through in a 2-1 victory at SKC despite the absences of five starters because of suspension or injury. Centerback Justen Glad marked his first start this season with a goal from a Joao Plata free kick and Luke Mulholland marked an excellent performance by connecting on a shot from distance after intercepting a poor SKC clearance. Yura Movsisyan fired a shot off the crossbar as RSL outshot SKC, 15-9, and conceded only a last-minute penalty kick.

2. SPORTING KANSAS CITY (3-1-0), 1. Two defensive breakdowns were punished by RSL. Glad escaped marking on a free kick to head the first goal and a terrible pass by Soni Mustivar set up the second. SKC controlled more than 62 percent of possession but managed just three shots on goal. Benny Feilhaber came on as a sub and converted a PK after another sub, Diego Rubio, drew a foul just inside the penalty area.

3. FC DALLAS (3-1-1), 7. Keeper Chris Seitz held off Crew SC until Tesho Akindele equalized in the 77th minuteMauro Diaz sat out the match after failing to pass a fitness test; FCD bombarded the Columbus goal with 21 shots but 15 of them missed the target. FCD fell behind in the ninth minute and if not for Seitz (five saves) Akindele’s goal, scored after a Max Urruti shot had bounced off the keeper and the goalpost, would have been only of statistical interest.

4. ORLANDO CITY (2-0-2), 9. One of Kaka’s best games (one goal, two assists) in MLS powered the Lions’ beatdown of the defending champions. Seb Hines headed a Kaka free kick to open the scoring and Brek Shea blasted a deft flick into the top far corner. After Kaka got the third goal himself, he deferred to Kevin Molino on a penalty kick, and the former USL star who missed most of last season with a torn ACL stroked home his first MLS goal. Another excellent crowd of 31,114 celebrated a fabulous victory.

5. LA GALAXY (2-1-1), 6. A point on the road is a good thing, yet the Galaxy played with a man advantage for more than an hour while settling for a 0-0 tie. All three subs each managed a shot on goal; the only starter to do so was Sebastian Lletget. In his first MLS start, Ariel Lassiter, whose father Roy Lassiter was the first 27-goal scorer in league history, managed three shots without putting one on frame. Keeper Brian Rowe made the highlight reel with a full-length, flying Save of the Week candidate.

6. COLORADO (2-1-1), 11. Up 1-0 and playing 11 against 10 after Luis Solignac’s goal in the 18th minute, the Rapids kept it close by squandering chances though eight of their 23 shots hit the target. Solignac cleverly dropped into the TFC back line to stay just onside and perfectly timed his run to collect a wonderful chip from Marco Pappa and score his first MLS goal (18th appearance).

7. TORONTO FC (1-2-1), 4. Former Rapids keeper Clint Irwin stymied his former team repeatedly despite a second caution issued to Benoit Cheyrou in the 13th minute. Still, TFC managed a dozen shots, five by Sebastian Giovinco. “At times, I thought we looked like the better team even playing 10 against 11,” said head coach Greg Vanney. TFC is halfway through its eight-game road swing.

8. MONTREAL (2-2-0), 2. Dominic Oduro took over up top for Didier Drogba, who stayed away from Seattle’s artificial turf. The Impact took 13 shots but was blanked for the second straight week. A nice save by Evan Bush tipped away a Dempsey free kick but he got caught in traffic on a corner kick and couldn't make a play on Deuce's goal.

9. PHILADELPHIA (2-2-0), 5. The Union carried much of the play at Chicago and piled up a 17-10 shot advantage despite a second caution issued to Warren Creavalle but were denied three times by the woodwork. A shot by Ilsinho rang the crossbar shortly before the dismissal. The defeat ended a two-match winning streak.

10. SAN JOSE (2-1-1), 8. Rallying to tie at home is no way to build momentum but a great play by Shea Salinas provided a chance that substitute Adam Jahn tucked away. Salinas robbed Fabian Espindola of the ball and pushed forward to serve up a precise, low cross. San Jose fell behind when Patrick Nyarko darted into a huge gap to head home.

11. VANCOUVER (2-2-1), 12. The Whitecaps held out at 0-0 for more than an hour after a straight red card was issued to Matias Laba for a harsh foul at midfield. Andrew Jacobson forced a top-class-save with a blast from distance in first-half stoppage time and four saves by keeper David Ousted gained the point.

12. PORTLAND (1-2-1), 10. Everything went south in Florida. Quiet games by Diego Valeri and Darlington Nagbe stilted the attack and Fanendo Adi’s failure to convert a penalty kick seemed inevitable. Defender Alvas Powell looked very bad on the second and third goals and Mr. Reliable, Nat Borchers, was beaten on the first one.

13. CHICAGO (1-1-2), 16. With a clean first touch and sharp finish Kennedy Iboananike struck a low shot into the far corner by which the Fire earned its first victory. He scored from a Michael Harrington centering pass a few minutes after Philly went down to 10 men but seldom did Chicago control the tempo even with the man advantage. Still, it’s a second shutout for keeper Matt Lampson and the first victory for head coach Veljko Paunovic at the senior level.

14. NEW ENGLAND (1-1-3), 18. The Revs scored with Red Bulls defender Kemar Lawrence sitting on the turf injured at midfield. Diego Fagundez tucked away a square ball from Juan Agudelo, who was set clear by a Scott Caldwell chip over the top. New York lost Felipe to a red card yet the Revs needed a smart save from Bobby Shuttleworth in the final minutes to claim their first win of the season. Agudelo nearly scored with a chip from 40 yards that was tipped onto the crossbar.

15. D.C UNITED (0-2-3), 15. Recent signing Tally Hall suited up in a D.C. shirt for the first time, but Travis Worra kept his place in goal and registered five saves. United squandered a 1-0 lead provided by Patrick Nyarko’s first goal for the club; he got his head to a cross whipped in by Lamar Neagle following some nice buildup play. Espindola’s costly giveaway betrayed a resilient effort on the road.

16. HOUSTON (1-2-1), 13. The Dynamo, which has lost its last two games, sat out the weekend. It hosts Seattle on Sunday.

17. COLUMBUS (0-2-2), 17. Crew SC jumped on top of FCD in the ninth minute when Justin Meram headed in a Federico Higuain corner kick, then were thwarted several times to increase the lead and went home with a point but still winless. Costly misses by Kei Kamara and Ethan Finlay typified the struggling attack that has scored just three goals in 2016.

18. SEATTLE (1-3-0), 20. Head coach Sigi Schmid makes a few changes, Clint Dempsey scores, Sounders win for the first time in the post-Obafemi Martins era. Schmid moved Dempsey into a central playmaking role behind striker Nelson Valdez, pushed Andreas Ivanschitz to the left wing, and used Jordan Morris off the bench. Brad Evans saw his first action since injuring his shoulder in the season opener.

19. NY RED BULLS (1-3-0), 14. Referee Mark Geiger didn’t do the Red Bulls any favors by sending off Felipe after ignoring the injury to Lawrence, but the vaunted NYRB attack was shut out for the third time in four games.

20. NEW YORK FC (1-1-2), 19. NYCFC took the week off and gets back to action against Chicago, which it defeated, 4-3, in the season opener.

 

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