Wednesday, August 02, 2006

MLS Week 18 Power Ratings

Week 18 saw a lot of ties, so there is not a lot of movement around the ratings. But here are the last ratings before the All-Star break.

1. DC United (last week - 1) - Two bad performances in a row is not enough to move them out of the top spot, but a messy defense and an absent offense will not keep them at the top for much longer. One must wonder, is this just a short slump or is this the beginning of a total collapse?

2. FC Dallas (2) - Dallas has depth this year. To get four goals without Mina and Ruiz is an accomplishment. Kenny Cooper might just be the best move the team has ever made and Bobby Rhine is leading the defense. If they can hold it together till the Texas heat dies a bit, they will make United sweat.

3. Houston Dynamo (3) - Houston's defense is strong (they have only given up 5 shots on goal in their last 3 matches), but their offense is missing. Actually, they are getting chances, they just cannot finish them. If they ever start finding net, they will be deadly.

4. Colorado Rapids (4) - On Wednesday they were able to get some good luck and beat Houston, but come Saturday, they were missing from Pizza Hut Park. The second half showed a team suffering from exhaustion.

5. Chivas USA (6) - This week's Chivas team can score, they just can't defend. The team is still having trouble making things work on both sides of the ball in the same week. If they could get both offense and defense to work together, they would be a force. Still, they were able to save a point late in stoppage time, so up to fifth they go.

6. Los Angeles Galaxy (5) - The Galaxy had the week off. The big question for the team is if Donovan will recover before their next league match on Aug. 9. If not, we'll get to see if Yallop can do something Sampson could not, win without the golden boy.

7. New England Revolution (7) - In the first half, it looked like the Revs were destined for destitute, but they turned it on in the second. They were making good passes and finding space in the box. Plus their defense was finally able to work some offside trips and slow down KC's attack, but still, they needed a final second goal to get a tie. So much potential, but so little realized.

8. New York Red Bull (9) - The Bulls keep their undefeated streak going thanks to some mayhem in Houston. The team was not executing like they did last week, but they were still strong on defense, which is good since they offense didn't seem to make the trip.

9. Chicago Fire (8) - The Fire continue to slouch in their new house. The team has not won since July 4th. Still, they were the better team on the pitch and did not give up a goal late, so it is something to be proud of.

10. Real Salt Lake (11) - On Wednesday they gave up another late goal to settle for a tie, but on Saturday all the stars in the sky lined up just right to allow them to beat DC. Regardless of it the ref's calls were good or not, as far as play goes, Real ran well with United. They were making passes, showing control in the midfield and strong on defense. Now the question is can they do this more then just once.

11. Columbus Crew (10) - Where are the points going to come from if you can't get goals. More and more I like to think of the Crew as the 2006 US World Cup squad. Their defense is good, but everything higher then that is lacking. Get a striker and maybe they have a chance.

12. Kansas City Wizards (12) - The Wizards used their magic to keep themselves from getting three full points as their defense, which had been weak since halftime, just walked off the pitch for stoppage time. They were doing a better job up top, but Eddie Johnson still has not awoken from his coma. Scott Sealy was a strong sub, but KC needs to feed him the ball if they want him to score.


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