Photo by Kyle Terada/USA Today Sports
By RYAN TOLMICH
The East and West are set to collide in MLS Week 13, which includes a rematch of last year’s MLS Cup finale.
While both teams have struggled in recent weeks, the New England Revolution have a chance to snag a tiny bit of revenge for last year’s loss to the LA Galaxy with a rematch at Gillette Stadium.
Meanwhile across the country, the Seattle Sounders, this year’s Western Conference leaders, face off with an Eastern Conference contender in the New York Red Bulls, who will be looking to emerge from a rough patch of their own.
Elsewhere, Toronto FC hosts the San Jose Earthquakes, Sporting KC takes on FC Dallas and D.C. United looks for revenge against the Philadelphia Union.
Here’s a closer look at all of this weekend’s MLS action:
SPORTING KC vs. FC DALLAS (Friday, 8 p.m., UniMas)
Unbeaten in the team’s last five matches, Sporting KC will look to extend the club’s streak to six while also making a statement by tackling a fellow Western Conference contender.
FC Dallas saw a five-game unbeaten streak of its own snapped last week in a loss to the Montreal Impact. Friday’s clash will present the second meeting between the two sides following a 3-1 FC Dallas victory back in March. Blas Perez scored twice in the prior meeting, so keep an eye on how the Sporting KC defense handles the always energetic forward this time out.
TORONTO FC vs. SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES (Saturday, 5 p.m., MLS Live)
Following the team’s first home win of the season, Toronto FC will look to repeat the feat against the San Jose Earthquakes.
Sebastian Giovinco was dominant in a 1-0 defeat of the Portland Timbers last week, and the diminutive Italian will have to continue to be so due to the injury to Jozy Altidore. Meanwhile, the Earthquakes U.S. Men’s National Team striker Chris Wondolowski will be entering in a festive mood after scoring his 100th MLS goal last time out. With TFC shaky at the back to start the season, Wondolowski provides a major test for a TFC backline that has to improve going forward.
VANCOUVER WHITECAPS vs. REAL SALT LAKE (Saturday, 6 p.m., MLS Live)
The Vancouver Whitecaps are in need of a victory.
Riding the club’s worst stretch of the season, the Caps are coming off back-to-back shutout losses, putting a bit of a damper on an explosive start to the season. RSL, meanwhile, were riding an emotional win over former head coach Jason Kreis and NYCFC before falling to the LA Galaxy midweek . While consistency hasn’t been the name of the game for RSL this season, a win over a fellow Western Conference contender would vault Jeff Cassar’s side back into the playoff picture.
NEW YORK CITY FC vs. HOUSTON DYNAMO (Saturday, 7 p.m., MLS Live)
Maybe Saturday will finally be the day for NYCFC.
Winless in 10 straight, NYCFC will look to break the streak Saturday against the Dynamo at Yankee Stadium. A major factor of whether or not that happens will lie with the defense, who will be tasked with stopping the resurgent duo of Giles Barnes and Will Bruin. The Dynamo duo have combined for 10 goals this season, one more than NYCFC’s entire sputtering attack.
D.C. UNITED vs. PHILADELPHIA UNION (Saturday, 7 p.m., MLS Live)
Just two weeks after topping D.C. United, the Philadelphia Union could achieve the very same end in a rematch Saturday.
The matchups with D.C. United will sandwich a Union victory over the Red Bulls, as Jim Curtin’s team is riding back-to-back wins over Eastern Conference contenders. Led by the return of CJ Sapong, the Union have had a new edge in recent weeks, but will be without the battering ram that is Connor Casey. D.C. United, who snapped a four-game losing streak last time out, enters quite shorthanded without Michael Farfan, Nick DeLeon and Luis Silva.
ORLANDO CITY vs. COLUMBUS CREW (Saturday, 7:30 p.m., MLS Live)
Kei Kamara will look to continue his hot-streak at the Citrus Bowl.
The Columbus Crew have scored eight times in as many games and currently lead the league with 10 finishes, ensuring a major test for a defense without Aurelien Collin. Brek Shea is also set to miss out due to a red card, leaving Orlando quite shorthanded for a matchup with an, at times, dominant Crew team that has already secured a 3-0 win over the expansion side.
CHICAGO FIRE vs. MONTREAL IMPACT (Saturday, 8:30 p.m., MLS Live)
With two wins in as many games, the Montreal Impact put their hot-streak to the test with a trip to the Windy City.
The Impact have snagged six points from two games, highlighted by a big-time victory over FC Dallas last time out. The Impact can make it three against the Fire, who have struggled in recent weeks in grabbing just two points from four contests.
COLORADO RAPIDS vs. PORTLAND TIMBERS (Saturday, 9 p.m., MLS Live)
Both coming off midweek action, fitness come into play as the Colorado Rapids and Portland Timbers collide.
The Rapids settled for a loss to the Seattle Sounders, while the Timbers picked up a bounce-back win over a struggling D.C. United team. Life will be made difficult for the Timbers once again, though, as Diego Valeri could miss his second straight game due to an ankle injury.
SEATTLE SOUNDERS vs. NEW YORK RED BULLS (Sunday, 5 p.m., ESPN 2)
Two of the league’s early season contenders will face off in an interconference showdown.
The Sounders have dropped just one of the team’s last seven contests, helping to push the team to the top of the Western Conference standings. The Red Bulls, meanwhile, have fallen back down to earth after a hot start with just one win in six. Riding their potent attack, the Sounders will go at a shorthanded Red bulls backline due to the absence of Matt Miazga and the potential injury woes of Kemar Lawrence and Damien Perrinelle.
NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION vs. LA GALAXY (Sunday, 7 p.m., Fox Sports 1)
Sunday evening presents an MLS Cup rematch, but this time the New England Revolution have home-field advantage.
Falling in last season’s finale, the Revs have looked lackluster in recent weeks, and will be without Lee Nguyen and Chris Tierney due to red cards received last time out. Their counterparts, the Galaxy, have not quite been up to the team’s standards as well, but the full-time return of Robbie Keane should aid a team with questions now lying in defense due to the potential absences of A.J. DeLaGarza and Robbie Rogers.
Anyone know any good streaming sites?
Big week for NY Red Bulls. Have won only once in their last six. Playing the best team in the league at the moment. If Red Bulls lose they will have 17 points out of a possible 36,…half. Not bad,…but certainly not worthy of all the ballyhoo.
BWP step up!
Does anyone else see the MLS Final being Seattle vs. Columbus? Too early??
Seattle, probably. But I think the Revs are better than Columbus when everybody’s healthy and, you know, not being red-carded. Just don’t see anybody beating New England this year when their best 11 are on the field. Including Seattle.
After losing to LA and Olave’s red card, I don’t think RSL is still riding high on that emotional NYCFC win.