Wayne Rooney showed up in a big way yet again in two games for D.C. United as they clinched a spot in the postseason. Corey Baird gave voters another reason to select him as Rookie of the Year with a big performance in the middle of the week.
The penultimate week of the regular season was chaotic and fun. Several teams sealed spots in the playoffs while several others are left hanging on for Decision Day next week.
Here’s the Best of MLS from Week 34:
Player of the Week
Wayne Rooney has led a revolution at D.C. United and it culminated over this past week when his excellent performances helped the team clinch a spot in the playoffs. He scored the lone goal in Wednesday night’s win over Toronto FC and followed that up with a pair of goals in the playoff clinching 3-1 win over New York City FC.
Rooney now has 12 goals in 17 MLS appearances since joining the league in the middle of July. Since he made his debut on July 14, D.C. United has won 12 of 18 matches and gone from the bottom of the Eastern Conference into a playoff spot.
Also having big weeks were Luciano Acosta, who assisted on one of Rooney’s goals on Sunday while scoring one for himself, Sebastian Blanco, and Tim Melia.
Team of the Week
Sporting Kansas City made a major statement over the weekend when they took on FC Dallas away from home and left with a commanding 3-0 victory. The result sent SKC to the top of the Western Conference and saw Dallas tumble down to third place, where a potential knockout round match awaits them.
D.C. United also deserves some props this week as they clinched a playoff spot, successfully overcoming their rocky start to the season. As do the Seattle Sounders, who scored a hard fought win over the weekend after sealing a playoff spot in a midweek win at Orlando City.
Rookie of the Week
Corey Baird continues to impress just about every time he steps out on the pitch. The wigner scored a goal and bagged an assist as Real Salt Lake won a must-win game at home against the New England Revolution.
The Rookie of the Year candidate finishes the year with eight goals and five assists and the hopes that his team can still make the playoffs if next weekend goes their way while they sit idle.
Goal of the Week
Wayne Rooney never seems to stop providing impressive highlights in MLS. This free kick gave D.C. United the lead against Toronto FC in midweek.