By Kevin Koczwara
It was a busy week around Major League Soccer. The Columbus Crew lost for the first time this year. Real Salt Lake finished off May undefeated. New England got its first win since April 1o, and Philadelphia and D.C. each got their second wins of the season.
1. LA Galaxy – The Galaxy are tough to score on, ask previously unbeaten Columbus after their weekend’s 2-0 defeat at the hands of Los Angeles, who was without their top scoring duo, Landon Donovan and Edison Buddle.
2. Real Salt Lake – RSL went 5-0 in May, pulling them within reach of Los Angeles and separating them from the rest of the pack in the West. To top it off ,RSL outscored their opponents 14-4 in the month of May. They look to have found their championship groove again.
3. Columbus Crew – They lost their first game of the season, but it was to Los Angeles and no one has beat them this year, and it was a close game. The Crew will look to pick up the pieces and get back on their winning ways in San Jose this weekend.
4. Toronto FC – Toronto started off slow, losing three of their first four games, but they have picked it up as of late, going unbeaten in the six games. A lot of the Reds success has to be because of the MVP type season Dwayne De Rosario is having.
5. Colorado Rapids – They don’t score many goals as a team (10 goals for), but they don’t let many in either (7 goals allowed). They are in a three way tie for third in the West with San Jose and Houston, but they were the only team to get a win this weekend of the three. Let’s see how they fair in a couple of weeks with Columbus next up on their schedule followed by Chicago and Houston.
6. San Jose Earthquakes – They were looking like they had title contender written all over them, but they have fallen off this week with a loss to surging Toronto. Chris Wondolowski needs to keeps scoring or the Quakes could be looking at a long June with a game at home against Columbus before travelling to Dallas and Salt Lake City.
7. New York Red Bulls – The Red Bulls lost to a struggling New England side on Saturday, giving up three goals in the process and having two men sent off. Could this be the end of a good thing for New York after they started off so strong? They will need to get some points this weekend at home when they take on Houston as Toronto and Columbus could be pulling away in the East.
8. Houston Dynamo – Houston is an enigma. They win won, they lose one. This weekend was especially bad as they lost, 3-2, in extra time at home to the expansion Philadelphia Union.
9. Seattle Sounders – Seattle was picked by many as a team to contender for the MLS Title. Instead, they have fallen under the sophomore slump and limped through May with a 1-3-1 record that saw them get outscored 7-2.
10. FC Dallas – Dallas has won only two games this year, and they have only lost two, out of ten games. The Hoops seem to play even with almost everyone they play, tying six games thus far. They drew level again last weekend with Chicago, but if they want to keep up with the best, they better start winning.
11. New England Revolution – The Revs hadn’t won in seven games until this weekend’s win over New York, but there was some bad news. Preston Burpo, New England’s goalkeeper, will be out for the rest of the season after fracturing his distal tibia and fibula. On a good note, Shalrie Joseph returned to the line-up two weeks ago and last week looked like the game changer New England needs. Oh, Matt Reis could be back this wekeend, too.
12. Chicago Fire – The Fire are coming off of a tie with European giants AC Milan, but that shouldn’t surprise anyone because Chicago has tied four of their 10 games this year including a tie on the weekend with Dallas (of course!). Like Dallas, Chicago needs to start winning games instead of tying them.
13. Chivas USA – They haven’t won since manhandling the Revs in Foxborough on May 5, losing four in a row, and lost to D.C. United, 3-2, on Saturday. It’s never good to let up three goals in one game to a team that had only scored four in their nine previous.
14. Philadelphia Union – They got their second win of the year by beating Houston last weekend. It was a good weekend to be a fan in Philly with Roy Halladay’s perfect game on Saturday for the Phillies, the USMNT win over Turkey on Saturday at Lincoln field and the Flyers are in the Stanley Cup Finals — oh wait, they lost twice over the long weekend to the Chicago Blackhawks.
15. D.C. United – They scored three goals in a win over Chivas USA and got their second win of the year. Could things be turning around for United? Doubtful, they host the streaking Real Salt Lake next weekend.
16. Kansas City Wizards – The Wizards have not won in eight games — losing six of those games — and things aren’t getting better for them because they go to Toronto next weekend and BMO field is one rowdy place to go into when you’re struggling.
Kevin Koczwara is a contributing writer and editor for The Soccer Guys. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.