Tuesday, July 17, 2007

2007 MLS Week 15 Power Ratings

With most of the top teams coming up with ties while the bottom feeders were mainly taking a week off to clean their pools or work on their resumes, there is not a lot of movement on the big board for week fifteen. The good news for the West is even though they hold three of the four bottom spots, they also hold two of the top three. Will this gap between the haves and haves not continue or will someone step up their pace and make a race out of it?

1. Houston Dynamo (Last week - 1) - The great stretch of 5 games in 11 days is over and the team and Houston is still looking good. Their defense is the story while their offense is hit and miss. If they could get some constant work up top, they would run away with the Supporters' Shield.

2. DC United (2) - That collapse against Dallas is going to sting for a little while. Their mistakes were minimal, so most teams would not be able to take advantage of them, however FCD is better then most teams. It is the little pains that still cause DC their big headaches.

3. FC Dallas (3) - I hope Dallas earned some respect with their come back on Saturday night. Yes, the team is always a little shuffled, but they, more often then not, find a way to get something out of it. However, the most impressive part of this club is their ability to get it done on the road. Seventeen of their 30 points have been taken on the road. Add to this that they only have four road games left this season and you have the making of something huge in big D.

4. New England Revolution (5) - There are still gaps in this club, but overall, they look to be past their slump. They need to get more people involved in their attack and their defense does leave people unmarked a little too often, but still looking good.

5. New York Red Bull (4) - The good news is the defense is looking better, however the offense is making it as hard as possible to enjoy this. If you can't finish the easy chances, you will not win. Jozy can't get back to this club fast enough.

6. Toronto FC (7) - The road has turned out to be kind for the team from Canada. TFC plays the best 'team' game in the league with everyone covering for everyone else if needed. With this structure, it is hard to imagine them not making the playoffs.

7. Columbus Crew (6) - They had a bit of a bump in the form of an own goal that cost them a point against Chivas, but they still played some good ball. The midfield is freeing up players and forcing difficult work by the opposition, which takes a lot of pressure off their still soft defense.

8. Chivas USA (8) - The goats still take way too much time to make something happen, but they are getting a bit quicker about it. If they can keep their home pitch safe and sneak some points on the road, they will cause someone pain in the playoffs.

9. Kansas City Wizards (9) - The Wizards are a lot like Chivas in that they need multiple openings to get a goal. Their defensive play has stepped it up but they need to focus their attack and get more then just Eddie Johnson on the sheets.

10. Los Angeles Galaxy (10) - The Galaxy were off this week and as far as I know, nothing happened with the team. However, their logo looks oddly different and I think I saw something on CNN about a new signing. I'll get back to you if I hear anything else.

11. Colorado Rapids (11) - Colorado took the week off to spend more time boring their family members.

12. Chicago Fire (12) - The Fire had no MLS matches this week, but did have a US Open Cup fixture. True to form, Chicago couldn't buy a goal and out they went.

13. Real Salt Lake (13) - Another game, another whipping. Sure, they only got beat 1-0 but that was one of the most lopsided 1-0 victories you will ever see. The goods, however, is when Real do get chances, they are normally dangerous ones. If they find a way to increase these chances and tighten up their midfield/defense, they could still make something of this year.

I have said my peace and now week fifteen is done.

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