Jul 31, 2012, 1:00 PM EDT
(Nos. 1-10 are on deck …so check back)
19. Portland Timbers – Watching this thing continue to spiral just makes me a little sad. At this point, fans in Seattle and Vancouver may even be feeling a little bad for the team that hasn’t scored since July 14. (Well, OK, maybe we shouldn’t get carried away.)
18. Colorado Rapids – When the coach is apologizing to fans and telling everyone that he’s to blame, and not anyone else, it’s commendable and all – but it’s a pretty sure sign that things are going about as badly as they can. The Rapids have lost a club record six straight; their last league win came on June 30.
17. FC Dallas – Brek Shea was left out of the 18 once again, even when he surely could have assisted an offense that needed … something. Schellas Hyndman’s team fell at home to Los Angeles, a big blow to playoff hopes around FC Dallas Stadium.
16. Toronto FC – CONCACAF Champions League was good to former TFC boss Aron Winter, but current head coach Paul Mariner sounds like he’s more concerned with MLS play. Either way, Eric Hassli’s return from an ankle injury can’t happen fast enough.
15. Montréal Impact – You know some players come into the league and need that adjustment period to MLS? Yeah, Italian veteran Alessandro Nesta (pictured, above) didn’t need anything like that. He’s going to help Jesse Marsch’s team, no doubt. And so will more three-assist nights from Felipe, like the one he had in a big weekend win over New York. Same for Marco Di Vaio finally coming through.
14. Chivas USA – Robin Fraser’s team remained within striking distance of the fifth and final playoff spot by taking three points out of Portland. Ben Zemanski was The Man in midfield and Danny Califf’s goal was pure gold in the Goats’ 1-0 win at Jeld-Wen Field.
13. New England Revolution – In this spot a week ago I talked about how Saer Sene’s goal scoring had dropped alarmingly. Well, he’s back. What a night he had, giving Philadelphia’s defense fits, not to mention that nasty shot that flummoxed Philly’s keeper. It just wasn’t enough, however, as the Union scored late to take the points and leave the Revs winless in four matches.
12. Philadelphia Union – It’s not always pretty, but John Hackworth (pictured, right) and his Unionhave won four of its last five. It’s getting to the point where he need to start talking about … nah, let’s wait one more week before we start talking about that. Freddy Adu was back in the starting lineup, although he’ll need to do more to keep that spot.
11. Vancouver Whitecaps – Something interesting is about to happen at BC Place. Darren Mattocks hit his seventh goal last week in a loss at Real Salt Lake. Scottish international Kenny Miller is still coming off the bench, but for how long? Will Martin Rennie replace his hot rookie striker? That’s risky. Or will he reshape the team and use two strikers? Also risky. Meanwhile, you have to wonder if that midfield is good enough to make playoff noise?
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