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ProSoccerTalk’s weekly MLS rankings

Aug 19, 2013, 2:31 PM EDT

Luis Robles

Nine rounds remain, and the races for playoff spots just keep tightening; Here is our weekly re-ordering of Major League Soccer teams, following 25 rounds of play:

19. D.C. United – Ben Olsen’s team fell to Montreal. Olsen got tossed out. The team remains on track for some dubious records. Ooof.

18. Toronto FC – Wasn’t Danny Koevermans supposed to be back by now? Every little bit will help for this bunch, which fell in Columbus on Saturday.

17. Chivas USA – Let’s see if the Goats can keep 11 players on the field for a mid-week meeting with FC Dallas. It hasn’t been that easy lately for Chivas USA.

16. FC Dallas – On the one hand, Mauro Diaz looks like a pretty good mid-season addition in the midfield. On the other hand we have that unsightly 11-game winless skid, which dates to May 25.

15. Columbus – Federico Higuain has that September look about him, as a another goal from the Crew’s top man helped give the men in yellow back-to-back wins for the first time this year.

14. Chicago Fire – A summer that had seemed to turn in the Fire’s favor took a downward dip in a 2-0 loss at New England. The team looked suddenly short of midfield ideas. Manager Frank Klopas and center back Bakary Soumare were ejected post-final whistle for their part in a sideline kerfuffle.

13. New England Revolution – Mayhem erupted at the end of New England’s 2-0 win over Chicago. Mayhem aside, it’s a big three points for the sixth-place Revs, considering they are neck and neck with seventh-place Chicago.

12. San Jose Earthquakes – Chris Wondolowski hit his eighth goal of 2013 as the Earthquakes upset Sporting Kansas City, 1-0, at Buck Shaw. “Wondo” and Co. have won five in a row at home, and that success in the Bay area has helped keep the ‘Quakes relevant in the playoff chase.

11. Houston Dynamo – Clint Dempsey was the name to know at BBVA Compass Stadium, but the Dynamo’s Giles Barnes stole the show with two goals, including one blistering right-footer from 35 yards in a 3-1 win over Seattle. Watch Barnes’ fantastic strike here.

(MORE: MLS Round 25 week in review)

10. Montreal Impact – A win over hapless D.C. United is not the achievement to hang your hat on in 2013; on the other hand, the Impact haven’t won a lot lately, so the late-game winner from  Marco Di Vaio was big stuff around Stade Saputo. He had both goals in the 2-1 win, his first strikes in MLS since July 3.

9. Philadelphia Union – It is rarely pretty with John Hackworth’s team, but the Union sure knows how to grind out results. Latest example, a highly useful scoreless draw at the New York Red Bulls. And, of course, if you’re going to play a 0-0 contest, may as well have a streaker after the final whistle to liven up the joint, eh?

8. Seattle Sounders – Stop everything this Sunday evening and watch a Cascadia Cup match for the ages against Portland. It. Will. Rock. … They’ve sold every seat in the building, Clint Dempsey will make his home debut and, of course, it’s Portland! Game time is 10 p.m. ET on ESPN2.

7. New York Red Bulls – The good work in goal of Luis Robles (pictured) was the high point from New York’s side of a scoreless draw against Philadelphia. But should the goalkeeper’s good work be a “high point” for a team blessed with Thierry Henry and other swell attacking threats? Meanwhile, Jamison Olave’s injury is concerning.

6. LA Galaxy – Robbie Keane is the newest hat trick hero around the StubHub Center, doing his three-goal thing in a commanding 4-2 win over Real Salt Lake. This comes after Landon Donovan’s hat trick of a week ago; this is an MLS club’s first back-to-back hat trick since San Jose’s in 2005 (Dwayne De Rosario and Donovan).

5. Vancouver Whitecaps – The Whitecaps suffered just their fourth loss 15 matches, falling 2-0 to in-form Colorado. Martin Rennie’s team resorted to hit-and-hope long balls to get over the Rapids’ busy midfield. They’ll presumably get that sorted out this week around BC Place.

4. Colorado Rapids – Raise your hand if you picked Colorado as a Supporters Shield contender. Hmmmm. … Not seeing many hands. … A 2-0 win over Vancouver is the latest good result for Oscar Pareja’s team, now unbeaten for nine in a row. New DP attacker Gabriel Torres (the club’s first Designated Player) debuted in a Rapids’ shirt.

3. Sporting Kansas City – Paying without Kei Kamara and Graham Zusi proved too much for the visitors in a 1-0 loss at San Jose. Peter Vermes’ team played well enough but did lack that last bit of playmaking and finishing quality that their talented pair provides.

2. Real Salt Lake – Manager Jason Kreis said the Galaxy was simply better, and it was hard to argue the point after a 4-2 thumping at the StubHub Center. (One of RSL goals came at the final whistle.) Not many bright spots, although Ned Grabavoy’s renaissance season remains rolling along.

1. Portland Timbers – Ryan Johnson and Darlington Nagbe had the goals in a 2-1 win over FC Dallas, but Diego Valeri pulled the strings in a midfield master class at Jeld-Wen Field. Portland was without Will Johnson and Jack Jewsbury, which takes a lot of “heart and soul” off the field, so that made the “W” even more worthwhile.

  1. charliej11 - Aug 19, 2013 at 2:36 PM

    31 out of the last 35 articles are foreign based soccer articles.

    Where is that guy that said I was a minor inconvienence when I asked to seperate out the MLS and US soccer articles ?

    Please create two sites, one for US soccer and one for foreign. There is overlap, just post those to both, but for the most part they are two VERY different topics. Please !

    • Shane - Aug 19, 2013 at 3:38 PM

      foreign? are you kidding?? the US *is* foreign from any other point of view.

      • wfjackson3 - Aug 19, 2013 at 6:11 PM

        Except from the viewpoint of a site targeted at US consumption.

      • charliej11 - Aug 20, 2013 at 2:00 PM

        No I wasn’t kidding…weird thing to kid about.

        The N in NBC stands for NATIONAL.

        They don’t mean England….so you are completely wrong, from NBCs point of view, everything outside of the US is foreign.

        Very bizarre post, did you even think before posting it ?

  2. charliej11 - Aug 19, 2013 at 2:45 PM

    Raise you hand if you saw Portland being Number 1 at anything this season. Late Aug, top spot.

    Eventually doesn’t Seattle have to win. IF LA is going to be in the playoffs, that is not leaving many spots if the Sounders lose to Portland. I have Portland favored, except for the homefield we will be providing.

    Go Sounders
    Seperate out the foreign based soccer.

  3. socamr - Aug 19, 2013 at 2:54 PM

    Colorado as a SS contender? Could you at least pay attention when compiling these ranking and writing these blurbs?

    Colorado is tied for TENTH overall in PPG; their high overall point standing is due to having played more games than everyone else.

    • Steve Davis - Aug 19, 2013 at 3:08 PM

      Well, I’ve said this before … I am clearly at a disadvantage, because I watch the games rather than just looking at the standings. The team has not lost in nine in a row. Plus, Colorado had some of the worst injury luck I’ve ever seen over the first two months (when they took the most of the PPG hits to which you refer). So right now, positioned as they are, playing as well as they are … YES, it would not surprise me to see Oscar Pareja’s team keep climbing. At the very least, I think it’s fair to say they are contenders.

  4. 76bean - Aug 19, 2013 at 3:10 PM

    Shield standings by PPG put Houston Dynamo in 4th place overall and second in the East, and with a win this weekend, first in the Eastern Conference.

    • 76bean - Aug 19, 2013 at 3:12 PM

      I’ll correct myself. They are 4th overall, but due to goals scored will likely not take first in the East for a few weeks.

      • Steve Davis - Aug 19, 2013 at 3:20 PM

        You know what that is? A sure sign that teams in the East (well, both conference, really) are stacked up tighter than rush hour on the 405! The final nine rounds are shaping up to be absolute thrillers.

  5. mlsconvert88888 - Aug 19, 2013 at 3:42 PM

    As the end of the season nears, rankings like these are getting tougher to nail down. After the results of this last weekend, the western conference is just simply off the hook right now!

  6. twalkray - Aug 19, 2013 at 10:26 PM

    The Revs won 2-0, not 2-1 i believe

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