As some of Major League Soccer’s best descend on Orlando for the MLS All-Star Game against Atletico Madrid and the MLS Homegrown Game against Chivas de Guadalajara’s U-20 side, the best teams in MLS are starting to emerge in the Pro Soccer USA Power Rankings.
The league’s balance of power continues to trend western, with four of the top five teams from Week 21 coming from the Western Conference. The Portland Timbers continue to trend upward, advancing three spots after a convincing 4-0 win over the LA Galaxy Saturday night.
The biggest movers, though, are as Northeast as you can get as the New England Revolution blasted eight spots up following a 4-1 win over Orlando City SC, extending the club’s remarkable unbeaten streak to 11 games.
The Major League Soccer Power Rankings are created by averaging the rankings submitted by a committee of Pro Soccer USA’s editors and writers.
- (1) Los Angeles Football Club (15-3-4, 49 points): Bob Bradley complained about a slow start and end to the first half, but we’ll focus on a scintillating 12 minutes when they scored all four of their goals in a 4-3 win over Atlanta United.
- (2) San Jose Earthquakes (11-7-4, 37 points): The Earthquakes made it four straight wins and victories in six of their last seven, beating the Colorado Rapids, 3-1. They’ve made Avaya Stadium a fortress with results in their last nine at home.
- (4) New York City FC (9-3-8, 35 points): Playing more advanced that usual, Alex Ring had a goal and set up Anton Tinnerholm and Heber, who set a club record with goals in five consecutive games, in a 3-1 win over visiting Sporting Kansas City.
- (7) Portland Timbers (9-8-4, 31 points): It’s now six games without defeat for the surging Timbers, who dismantled the LA Galaxy Saturday at Providence Park. Starting in place of the suspended Diego Chara, Cristhian Paredes struck for a brace and Diego Valeri and Jeremy Ebobisse added a goal apiece.
- (9) Seattle Sounders FC (11-6-5, 38 points): Jordan Morris scored the lone goal in a 1-0 victory over the Houston Dynamo, only the club’s third road win of the season, but it was the third in the Rave Green’s last four games.
- (14) New England Revolution (9-8-6, 33 points): The Revs picked up their third win in a row — outscoring opponents 10-1 during that stretch — with a 4-1 win over Orlando City SC Saturday at Gillette Stadium. Gustavo Bou, Cristian Penilla, Carles Gil and Diego Fagundez all scored for New England.
- (5) Philadelphia Union (11-7-6, 39 points): For the second time in three matches, the Union suffered a 4-0 road defeat, this to the Montreal Impact. Their gap in the East has closed to three points with Atlanta United and D.C. United in hot pursuit.
- (6) Atlanta United (11-9-3, 36 points): Mo Adams scored on his Atlanta debut and Josef Martinez remains in form, but the Five Stripes fell in a 4-1 hole and the friction between coach Frank de Boer and star playmaker Pity Martinez appears to be continuing.
- (10) D.C. United (9-6-9, 36 points): Wayne Rooney put a curling free kick over the Chicago Fire wall, but goalkeeper Kenneth Kronholm was equal to the task in a 0-0 draw that moved D.C. United to within three points of first-place Philadelphia ahead of Sunday’s showdown.
- (3) New York Red Bulls (10-9-4, 34 points): The Red Bulls are leaking goals at an alarming rate, conceding three times in a 3-2 defeat to Columbus Crew SC last Saturday. It was the club’s fourth home defeat, the most in a single season since Red Bull Arena opened in 2010.
- (11) Minnesota United FC (10-7-5, 35 points): The Loons attempted 37 crosses, but only forced Whitecaps goalkeeper Maxime Crepeau into one save in a 0-0 home draw that extended an unbeaten streak to six games.
- (8) LA Galaxy (12-9-1, 37 points): All those good feels from an El Trafico win over LAFC went out the window with a four-goal defeat in Portland. It doesn’t get much easier for LA, which face Atlanta United without the suspended trio of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Efrain Alvarez and Diego Polenta.
- (13) FC Dallas (9-8-6, 33 points): Jesse Gonzalez was the Man of the Match in a 0-0 home draw with Real Salt Lake, making a pair of stunning denials against Marcelo Silva and Corey Baird en route to five saves.
- (12) Real Salt Lake (9-9-4, 31 points): Wins away from home continue to be tough to come by for RSL, which battled FC Dallas to a 0-0 draw at Toyota Stadium, extending an unbeaten run to three games.
- (17) Toronto FC (9-9-5, 32 points): Nick DeLeon and Jozy Altidore scored in each half to lift Toronto FC to a 2-1 win over FC Cincinnati, the club’s third win in their last four games.
- (19) Montreal Impact (10-11-3, 33 points): It was (better than a) dream debut, according to Finnish winger Lassi Lappalainen, who struck for a brace, as did Orji Okwonkwo in a 4-0 rout of the Philadelphia Union.
- (15) Orlando City SC (7-11-5, 26 points): A deficit that was just one goal at halftime ballooned to four in the first 30 minutes of the second half before Tesho Akindele found the back of the net in the 77th minute of a 4-1 loss to the rolling Revolution.
- (16) Houston Dynamo (9-10-3, 30 points): Dynamo coach Wilmer Cabrera had two beefs after a 1-0 loss to the Sounders at BBVA Stadium Saturday — his club’s inability to finish chances inside the 18-yard box and what he believes should have been a foul on Jordan Morris seconds before his winner.
- (22) Columbus Crew SC (7-14-3, 24 points): Pedro Santos struck for a brace, including the 84th-minute winner and Luis Argudo scored his first MLS goal in a 3-2 win over the Red Bulls, extending the Crew’s unbeaten streak to three games.
- (18) Colorado Rapids (5-12-5, 20 points): After threatening to reach the playoff line in the West, the Rapids are sinking lower in the standings with a 3-1 loss at San Jose the club’s third in their last four games without a win. Diego Rubio provided the lone bright spot Saturday with a cosmetic goal two minutes from full time.
- (20) Sporting Kansas City (6-9-7, 25 points): Whether it was the in-game shoving between teammates or Roger Espinoza’s red card just past the hour mark, there weren’t many good looks for Sporting, which has dropped back-to-back games after appearing to steer the ship in the right direction with consecutive wins.
- (21) FC Cincinnati (5-16-2, 17 points): Emmanuel Ledesma scored in the 58th minute to cut the expansion side’s deficit to one goal, but an equalizer wasn’t to be had in a 2-1 loss Saturday night at BMO Field.
- (23) Vancouver Whitecaps FC (4-11-9, 21 points): The Whitecaps defended in a low block and hit Minnesota United on counters. The plan nearly worked to perfection if not for Vito Mannone and his five saves in a 0-0 draw.
- (24) Chicago Fire (5-10-9, 24 points): The Fire are desperate for victories, but settled for a 0-0 home draw against D.C. United that extended a winless streak to five matches.
Pro Soccer USA writer Dylan Butler contributed to this report.