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SBI MLS Power Rankings: Week 3

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Photo by Bill Streicher/USA Today Sports

By RYAN TOLMICH

Entering the season perceived to be just outside the league’s upper echelon, FC Dallas continues to make its case to be included among the league’s elite.

FC Dallas has picked up three wins in as many games, most recently besting the Philadelphia Union 2-0. With the victory, FC Dallas remains the only team in the league on maximum points.

Things haven’t been as smooth for the defending champion LA Galaxy, which was once again forced to settle for a draw.

Elsewhere, the Earthquakes picked up a second straight victory to open up Avaya Stadium in style while ensuring a move up the rankings.

Here are the SBI MLS Power Rankings for Week 3:

SBI MLS Power Rankings (Week 3)

1. (1) LOS ANGELES GALAXY (1-0-2)

LA Galaxy

LAST WEEK: Tied the Houston Dynamo, 1-1, on Sunday

THIS WEEK: at D.C. United on on Saturday

OUTLOOK– Once again, the LA Galaxy were forced to settle for a draw in a game they could have won, but the reigning champions have yet to lose a game through the opening three weeks. Jose Villareal has stepped up admirably following the departure of Landon Donovan, filling the void early with a goal and two assists.

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2. (2) SEATTLE SOUNDERS (1-1-0)

Seattle Sounders FC

LAST WEEK: Bye

THIS WEEK: At FC Dallas on Saturday

OUTLOOK–  Following a frustrating defeat to the San Jose Earthquakes, the Sounders are coming off a bye in league play. The club does, however, host Club Tijuana in a Tuesday night friendly to prep for CONCACAF Champions League. Waiting this weekend is the league’s hottest team, FC Dallas, which should provide a good barometer of where both teams stand in the early season.

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3. (4) FC DALLAS (3-0-0)

DAL_Primary_COL

LAST WEEK: Beat Philadelphia Union, 2-0, on Saturday

THIS WEEK: vs. Seattle Sounders on Saturday

OUTLOOK– FC Dallas has thrived early, establishing itself as the league’s most dominant side through three weeks. The club has been spectacular on both the attacking and defensive ends, having scored six goals while only conceding one. Week 4 presents a major test, though, in the form of the reigning Supporters’ Shield winners.

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4. (3) COLUMBUS CREW (1-1-0)

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LAST WEEK: Bye

THIS WEEK: vs. New York Red Bulls on Saturday

OUTLOOK– Tabbed as early season title contenders, the Columbus Crew lived up to the hype by dismantling a 10-man Toronto FC side last time out. With an extra week between action, the Crew will need to continue the momentum by replicating that performance, rather than a stagnant display from the team’s 1-0 loss to the Houston Dynamo in the season opener.

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5. (6) TORONTO FC (1-1-0)

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LAST WEEK: Bye

THIS WEEK: at Real Salt Lake on Sunday

OUTLOOK– Toronto FC was completely overwhelmed after going down a man against the Columbus Crew, and never looked truly in the game for a majority of the contest. With a week to work in some of the new faces, TFC would hope to put together a more cohesive performance against RSL.

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6. (10)  NEW YORK RED BULLS (1-0-1)

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LAST WEEK:  Beat D.C. United, 2-0, on Sunday

THIS WEEK: vs. Columbus Crew on Saturday

OUTLOOK– Coming off a tumultuous offseason to say the least, the Red Bulls did plenty to ease fan concerns with a dominant performance against a fierce rival. Despite being forced into playing a makeshift defense, the Red Bulls were dominant, with the club’s new-look midfield trio proving to be a major handful.

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7. (9) NEW YORK CITY FC (1-0-1)

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LAST WEEK: Tied Colorado Rapids, 0-0, on Saturday

THIS WEEK: vs. Sporting KC on Saturday

OUTLOOK– Saturday’s performance against the Rapids was more than a little underwhelming, as NYCFC was on the back foot against a Rapids side that wasn’t expected to present much of a challenge. NYCFC struggled to attack with any consistency, with David Villa providing the lone real chance of the afternoon.

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8. (5) D.C. UNITED (1-1-0)

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LAST WEEK:  Lost, 2-0, at the New York Red Bulls on Sunday

THIS WEEK: vs. LA Galaxy on Saturday

OUTLOOK– In the eyes of Ben Olsen, Sunday’s performance was unacceptable, as D.C. United was completely outclassed by the rival Red Bulls. Overmatched in the midfield, D.C. struggled to get in any sort of rhythm in what turned out to be a demoralizing early season loss.

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9. (14) VANCOUVER WHITECAPS (2-1-0)

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LAST WEEK: Beat Orlando City, 1-0, on Saturday

THIS WEEK: at Orlando City on Saturday

OUTLOOK– Last season’s Whitecaps lacked only an attacking threat, and it now appears that the club has one in Octavio Rivero. Having provided a goal in each of the team’s games, including Saturday’s late winner, Rivero has the potential to elevate the Whitecaps into the upper echelon of contenders.

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10. (7) NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION (0-2-1)

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LAST WEEK: Tied Montreal Impact, 0-0, on Saturday

THIS WEEK: vs. San Jose Earthquakes on Saturday

OUTLOOK–  Three games, zero goals. The Revs are struggling and lack any creative spark. While Week 4 is no time to panic, Jermaine Jones’ absence as he recovers from sports hernia surgery has been mighty concerning, as the U.S. Men’s National Team midfielder’s return can’t come soon enough for a Revs side that lacks any bite.

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11. (8)  ORLANDO CITY (1-1-1)

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LAST WEEK: Lost 1-0 to Vancouver Whitecaps on Saturday

THIS WEEK: at Montreal Impact on Saturday

OUTLOOK– Saturday’s performance was expected from an expansion side, as Orlando looked strong, but failed to make any true mark. Growing pains are expected, and they’ll come, but Orlando City still has to prove that they have a viable scoring option.

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12. (12) PORTLAND TIMBERS (0-0-3)

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LAST WEEK: Tied Sporting KC, 0-0, on Saturday

THIS WEEK: at Vancouver Whitecaps on Saturday

OUTLOOK– It’s been three points from three games for the Timbers, who have struggled to really assert themselves as dominant yet this season. Part of the blame should lie on the attacking end, as the Timbers have scored just twice in three matches, a recipe for dropped points.

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13. (11) REAL SALT LAKE (0-0-2)

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LAST WEEK: Bye

THIS WEEK: vs.Toronto FC on Sunday

OUTLOOK– After two vastly different performances, Real Salt Lake needs to demonstrate that it can combine for success on both the attacking and defensive end. A match with Toronto FC looms, with both sides needing to show depth due to national team commitments.

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14. (16) SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES (2-1-0)

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LAST WEEK: Beat the Chicago Fire, 2-1, on Sunday

THIS WEEK: at New England Revolution on Sunday

OUTLOOK– Following the team’s upset victory over the Seattle Sounders, it would have been natural for the Earthquakes to have a bit of a hangover heading into the opening of Avaya Stadium. It never came, as the Earthquakes looked strong once again in a defeat of the lowly Fire.

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15. (13)  SPORTING KANSAS CITY (0-1-2)

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LAST WEEK: Tied Portland Timbers, 0-0, on Saturday

THIS WEEK: At New York City FC on Saturday

OUTLOOK– It’s been a series of mediocre to lackluster performances from Sporting KC. With just two goals from three games, Sporting KC has struggled to get into a flow, but is fortunate to see Matt Besler and Graham Zusi untouched by national team call ups.

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16. (15) PHILADELPHIA UNION (0-1-2)

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LAST WEEK: Lost, 2-0, to FC Dallas on Saturday

THIS WEEK: at Chicago Fire on Sunday

OUTLOOK– After narrowly snagging draws in the team’s opening pair of games, luck finally ran out for the Union against the buzz saw that is the FC Dallas attack. Jim Curtin’s side impressed on the attacking end in the club’s second game, but consistency will need to be the name of the game going forward, starting with Sunday’s meeting with the Fire

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17. (17) HOUSTON DYNAMO (1-1-1)

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LAST WEEK:  Tied LA Galaxy, 1-1, on Saturday

THIS WEEK: vs. Colorado Rapids on Saturday

OUTLOOK– After struggling in a defeat to Orlando City, the Dynamo did well to snag a point against an always-dangerous LA Galaxy side. Head coach Owen Coyle has his men playing tight, composed soccer, as the Dynamo have never looked truly outmatched yet this season.

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18. (18) MONTREAL IMPACT (0-1-1)

Logo Impact MLS

LAST WEEK: Tied New England Revolution, 0-0, on Saturday.

THIS WEEK: vs. Orlando City on Saturday

OUTLOOK– The Impact’s CONCACAF Champions League form has yet to carry over into MLS play, with the team yet to score a goal in MLS this season. Injuries to Justin Mapp and rookie sensation Cameron Porter won’t help, as the Impact’s attack is quickly weakening.

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19. (19) COLORADO RAPIDS (0-0-2)

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LAST WEEK: Tied New York City FC, 0-0, on Saturday

THIS WEEK: at Houston Dynamo on Saturday

OUTLOOK– Through two games, the Rapids have two points, based mostly off the team’s strength on the defensive end, which has produced back-to-back clean sheets. On the attacking end, things haven’t been so fruitful as the team is yet to score, but it’s pretty hard to lose if you don’t concede.

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20. (20) CHICAGO FIRE (0-3-0)

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LAST WEEK: Lost, 2-1, to San Jose Earthquakes on Sunday

THIS WEEK: vs. Philadelphia Union on Sunday

OUTLOOK– It’s been an ugly start for the Fire with three losses in as many games. Despite providing a few positive moments, the team’s new signings have yet to click, leading to the Fire being outclassed in each game to this point.

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What do you think of this week’s power rankings? Do you think any team is ranked too high? Any too low?

Share your thoughts below.

Comments

  1. “Narrowly snagging draws in the team’s opening pair of games” yea they did end with draws, but if either of two clear penalties are called in the Rapids game, or a second red card is given for the karate kick to Andrew Wengers back the score comes out very different. And if the horrendous nonexistent penalty isn’t given against Mo Edu against RSL in the dying minutes, the Union comfortably see out a win against a good Western Conference team on the road. To say their “luck finally ran out” is a hard argument because I would argue they had some of the worst luck in the league across their first two games. They were the better team for all 90 minutes of their first two games and had FC Dallas matched and running end to end up until the early injury/substitution and red card. The “buzz saw that is the FC Dallas attack” did not win this game. The red card, the injury, and a horrendous defensive error from Fabinho turned the game, as the Union were at worst even and FC Dallas dropped extremely deep almost as soon as they came out in the second half. Dallas has a very good offense, don’t get me wrong, but that isn’t what won them this game. The Union have been the better team for every minute of the season up until Pfeffers red. The points will start falling for them if they keep moving the ball and defending as they have so far this season.

    Reply
    • +1

      Unfortunately it’s been a rough start for the Union. They should be better once Chaco is healthy. That being said, LeToux and especially Wenger have got to play a lot better. They’ve been extremely poor so far this season.

      Reply
    • yeah, i don’t necessarily disagree with their ranking here but the description given of the season so far is wildly inaccurate

      Reply
  2. I have to agree with some of the other people commenting, these rankings seem to be based more on reputation and expectation than actual results. It seems like there are a lot of contradictions in ranking criteria from top to bottom.

    Reply
  3. I love the Power Rankings.

    Dallas should be honored to be included in the elite…geez.

    Dallas is for real. They have a good coach with a good team that plays good soccer.
    They should be number one until someone proves it wrong. Seattle, who is playing inferior, and LA which probably is, had that privilage.

    Reply
  4. FCD never gets respect on SBI. Even if they beat Seattle this week I still dont think sbi will move to first.

    Ryan, would love to hear your reasoning on why fcd ard only 3rd?

    Reply
    • Ditto. See my post below.

      downintexas, do you remember 2010 ( I think ). Dallas never lost…and got no respect then either.
      A number of ties, but that team couldn’t be beaten…no respect.

      Reply
      • I admit straight up results don’t mean anything. But LA has beat Chicago, who is ranked the lowest and tied Portland and Houston who are also not ranked very high.

        Seattle lost to San Jose, whom lost to Dallas, and tied NE.

        If only Dallas had a star DP. Then they might get up to second.

      • Well I hope you are going, enjoy the game…….when my Sounders beat your FCs you will cry on Saturday……but at least you know you can read a justified Power Rankings on Tuesday.

  5. I am having a hard time figuring how the Ryan found Columbus’s performance against Houston “stagnant”. Columbus had 60% possession, outshot Houston 18-8 (6-3 on target), put in 35 crosses, and because of their constant attacking Tyler Deric was Man of the Match with his excellent keeping being the only reason Houston didn’t lose.

    Reply
  6. glad to see the great fitness guru Peter Vermes has his KC squad heading toward the bottom…maybe they can battle Chicago for relegation to NASL…this season

    Reply
  7. RE: TFC “With a week to work in some new faces….”

    Are you kidding? You think they should play better on a week when they’re on the road in Salt Lake without Michael Bradley or Jozy Altidore?

    Logic might suggest otherwise.

    Reply
  8. I say this as a Galaxy fan: You’re far too generous to LA. Agreed that Villarreal has performed very well. He deserves recognition. But drawing at home to Houston is just bad.

    And FC Dallas is at third? Nine points from nine. Are you trolling us?

    Reply
    • As a fellow Galaxy fan, I also agree. FC Dallas has been far and away the best team this year, and the Galaxy have been mediocre in comparison to their potential.

      Reply
      • As a Dallas fan, I’m reluctant to agree that we’ve been “far and away the best team this year”, while conceding that we may be the luckiest team so far this year…

        A late 1-0 win, questionable calls leading to a win, and a red card in the last match, none of these (with the possible exception of the Philly match only after they went down to 10) were particularly dominant performances…I’ve learned my lesson the past few seasons, all of which had good or great starts for us, and will wait until the start of the second third of the season, keeping a wary eye on the injured list, before calling us a lock for playoffs. If everyone can stay healthy and Seitz keeps the net relatively clean, a Supporter’s Shield run is not outside the realm of possibility.

        This is going to be a very exciting, and more than likely a hand-wringing season.

  9. “Saturday’s performance against the Rapids was little more than underwhelming, as NYCFC was on the backfoot against a Rapids side that wasn’t expected to present much of a challenge. NYCFC struggled to attack with any consistency, with David Villa providing the lone real chance of the afternoon.”

    And you moved NYCFC up two places? Maybe if they lost badly they’d be #1!

    Reply

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