MLS Power Rankings: Eastern leaders swap spots

The FIFA break follows a crazy-busy week in MLS, with 16 league matches – including several rivalry games -- as well as a few Concacaf Champions League group matches.

FC Dallas downed Texas rival Houston, 3-1, to stay on top. Despite a home loss to Montreal, Toronto FC moved into second when New York City FC lost in Orlando. The Red Bulls also jumped up by beating the Revs.

A 2-1 Rocky Mountain Cup triumph over Colorado lifted RSL above that foe in the rankings and into fifth place. Portland halted Seattle’s recent rival by stuffing the Sounders, 4-2, in a Cascadia Cup clasico. Philadelphia hopped three places by sweeping its two games, and four-point weeks for Montreal and D.C. United raised their placings as well.

Week 25 Results
Aug. 24

Chicago 2, LA Galaxy 2. Highlights
Columbus 1, Philadelphia 2. Highlights
Houston 1, Seattle 1. Highlights
Montreal 1, D.C. United 1. Highlights
Orlando City 1, Toronto FC 2. Highlights
San Jose 0, New England 0. Highlights
Aug. 26
Real Salt Lake 2, Colorado 1. Highlights
Aug. 27
Columbus 2, San Jose 0. Highlights
D.C. United 6, Chicago 2. Highlights
Houston 1, FC Dallas 3. Highlights
LA Galaxy 0, Vancouver 0. Highlights
Philadelphia 2, Sporting KC 0. Highlights
Toronto FC 0, Montreal 1. Highlights
Aug. 28
NY Red Bulls 1, New England 0. Highlights
Portland 4, Seattle 2. Highlights
Orlando City 2, New York City FC 1. Highlights
Only MLS results are factored into the Power Rankings, which include a team’s record in parentheses and rank last week.
1. FC DALLAS (14-7-6), 1. Trailing 1-0 after 20 minutes, FCD rolled forward to score three goals in the same time span to open up a five-point lead atop the Western Conference and overall standings as well. Michael Barrios scored the first of his two goals a minute after Mauro Diaz equalized with a PK, and tallied again in the 79th minute.

2. TORONTO FC (12-8-7), 3. A road win, a home loss and injuries that could keep Sebastian Giovinco out for a month make for eventful times in Toronto. Tosiant Ricketts and his replacement, Jozy Altidore, scored in a 2-1 win that supposedly set up TFC for a strong showing against the Impact. Instead, TFC failed to exploit a man-advantage in the second half, during which Giovinco hobbled off with quadriceps and adductor injuries.

3. NEW YORK CITY FC (11-8-8), 2. The road warriors are wavering a bit. Still holders of the best away mark at 6-5-3, NYCFC has tied twice and lost twice in its last four. Steven Mendoza equalized from a rebound in Orlando but by conceding again the goals-allowed mark increased to 45, second-worst in MLS.

4. NY RED BULLS (11-9-7), 4. A great effort by Alex Muyl created the chance for Bradley Wright-Phillips to notch his 16th goal of the season as the Red Bulls ran their unbeaten run to nine. Muyl overpowered Jose Goncalves to fire a shot that was saved, and the rebound caromed to BWP. NYRB leads the league in home wins (10) and is tied for the lead in home points (31).

5. REAL SALT LAKE (12-8-7), 8. The Rio Tinto Mystique resurfaced as RSL joined Colorado in the standings with 43 points despite failing to convert two penalty kicks. After bagging a pair of nice goals, Yura Movsisyan shot wide from the spot and late in the match Javier Morales’ PK was blocked. A spectacular save by Nick Rimando, his sixth of the night, nailed down RSL’s fourth victory in the last six games.

6. LA GALAXY (9-4-13), 5. After sitting out two games with a head injury, keeper Brian Rowe got back in the nets and earned his seventh shutout of the season. An opening goal by Gyasi Zardes and equalizer from Giovani dos Santos got a costly point in Chicago; Steven Gerrard and Jelle Van Damme departed injured in the first half. Gyasi Zardes departed late in the game with what reported to be a broken foot that might keep him out the rest of the regular season.

7. SPORTING KC (11-12-5), 7. Several excellent saves by keeper Alec Kann couldn’t offset red cards to Jimmy Medranda and Roger Espinoza as SKC struggled in its fifth game (counting the Open Cup) in 15 days. Ever Alvarado made his MLS debut as Medranda’s replacement. SKC is hanging tough in the playoff race but the defeat extended its road winless streak to 12 games.

8. MONTREAL (9-7-10), 9. Down to 10 men following a red card issued to Callum Mallace in the 43rd minute, the Impact prevailed at BMO Field with a staunch defensive effort and a great goal by Ignacio Piatti. He collected a bouncing feed from Dominic Oduro with his right foot and fired a left-footed shot inside the far post.

9. COLORADO (11-4-10), 6. The Rapids are starting to ebb. Still the best defensive team in the league (22 goals allowed), Colorado took the lead at RSL on a Shkelzen Gashi goal but the back line was taken apart several times and it needed a great penalty-kick save from Tim Howard to stay in the game. Gashi nearly equalized in the final seconds. A second loss since April 9 isn’t alarming, yet the mark of 2-2-6 in the last 10 games is concerning.

10. PHILADELPHIA (11-9-7), 13. A six point week is always a great thing, and this one also halted a barren streak of just one victory in eight games. Against SKC Roland Alberg came off the bench to score his ninth goal in the last 12 games and then set up Tranquillo Barnetta to ice the victory in stoppage time. First-round draft picks Keegan Rosenberry and Fabian Herbers got the goals in Columbus. Philly leads MLS in goals (47) and is 3-1-0 when fielding Alejandro Bedoya, who’s yet to notch a goal or assist but has been a presence nonetheless.

11. SEATTLE (9-13-4), 10. After a disastrous first half in Portland, Andreas Ivanschitz notched his third goal and Jordan Morris upped his season tally to nine. The saga of Nicolas Lodeiro added another dramatic chapter with a 94th-minute  goal that earned a 1-1 tie in Houston.

12. PORTLAND (9-10-8), 12. The Timbers rolled over the Sounders with first-half goals by Vytautas Andriuskevicius, Fanendo Adi, Lucas Melano and Steven Taylor to halt a two-game losing streak. They hold a three-point lead in the chase for sixth place.

13. D.C. UNITED (7-8-11), 15. Handed a man advantage late in the first half, United overpowered Chicago as Patrick Mullins rang up a hat trick and Luciano Acosta assisted on three goals. Mullins’ hattie was the first registered in league play by a United player since June 2014. Some Bill Hamid brilliance and a PK converted by Lamar Neagle, one of seven changes to the starting lineup from the previous match, earned a point in Montreal.

14. ORLANDO CITY (6-7-13), 14. Stunned by a late goal from TFC, the Lions regrouped to knock off the other team near the top of the Eastern Conference. Kaka polished off a counter attack to open the scoring and converted a penalty kick after he was fouled controlling a nice ball from newcomer Matias Perez Garcia.

15. SAN JOSE (7-8-11), 11. Former general manager John Doyle took the fall for a season on the fizzle; he was dismissed Monday and replaced by former technical director Chris Leitch. In Columbus, the Quakes managed just two weak shots on goal. Against the Revs, they seldom threatened after a close-range header from Chris Wondolowski bounced just past the post.

16. COLUMBUS (5-9-11), 17. Handed the playmaker reins in the absence of Federico Higuain, Justin Meram served a cross that Ethan Finlay converted for the first goal against the Quakes, and clinched victory by knocking home a penalty kick. Crew SC showed some resilience in that game after losing to Philly on a goal conceded one minute after newcomer Adam Jahn equalized with his first goal for the club.

17. HOUSTON (5-11-10), 16. A goal in the 19th minute by Alex lasted into the second half and then FCD ran away with the match. The Dynamo also blew a 1-0 lead provided by an Andrew Wenger goal when the Sounders equalized in the fourth minute of stoppage time.

18. CHICAGO (5-12-8), 18. Tied with United, 1-1, the Fire fizzled after Khaly Thiam departed with a red card issued for throwing the ball at an opponent and wasted a goal and assist by Michael de Leeuw. Goals three minutes apart by Arturo Alvarez and David Accam yielded a 2-1 lead against the Galaxy the Fire couldn’t hold onto.

19. VANCOUVER (8-12-7), 19. The ‘Caps ended a four-game losing streak by defending stubbornly at StubHub Center and narrowly missed stealing a win when Erik Hurtado’s header bounced over the crossbar.

20. NEW ENGLAND (6-12-9), 20. A shutout in San Jose during which Kei Kamara hit a shot off the post for the sixth time this season buoyed hopes of getting a result at Red Bull Arena. But a stubborn defensive effort was betrayed when the Revs lost the ball and Goncalves was shunted aside in the scoring sequence. The Revs have only that one point in the last five games, in which they’ve scored two goals. 
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