Week 7 of the 2017 MLS season is in the books, and we have a new Number 1 in the second edition of the FPI power rankings, along with lots of other movement.
The biggest winner of the week was The Montreal Impact, jumping five spots following their first win of the season. The biggest losers this week were the Portland Timbers, and Houston Dynamo who each DROPPED five spots after disappointing home results.
One thing to note as you go through this, you may see that teams still drop after a win. One of the things I wanted to do with this is avoid "slot voting" where "oh they won so they have to move up." While a teams FPI score may, indeed, increase if other teams around them have their scores increase as well they may not be able to overcome that. This is at its most true in spots 9-16 who are seperated by only 1.3342 points. This means that sometimes a single goal, or the location of the match can be the difference. (Yay Parity!)
Where does your team rank? Read on to find out (all times Pacific)
#1 COLUMBUS CREW (4W-2L-1D) SCORE: 9.5507 PREV: 3 (+2) H1/L3
LAST WEEK: W 2-1 v Toronto
The Eastern Conference leaders fell behind early off a Jozy Altidore header, but scored twice in quick succession at the end of the first half, and saw out the rest of the match to earn the 2-1 win. Columbus has now gone 5 straight games without conceding a second half goal, which was a major problem for them in 2016. They are tied on Points and Wins with Portland for the Supporters Shield lead, but trail on Goal Difference.
NEXT WEEK: AT #15 NEW YORK RED BULLS SATURDAY APRIL 22, 430PM
#2 FC DALLAS (3W-0L-2D) SCORE: 9.325 PREV: 2 (NC) H2/L2
LAST WEEK: D 1-1 at San Jose
Dallas was mere seconds away from grabbing a crucial early season road win against a Western Conference foe, and the top spot in this weeks rankings, before Jahmir Hyka scored his first MLS goal in Walk Off fashion to split the points for the Quakes. Still, with 11 points through 5 games Dallas is in a good position to make noise in the West again this year.
NEXT WEEK: #3 SPORTING KANSAS CITY SATURDAY APRIL 22, 5PM
#3 SPORTING KANSAS CITY (3W-0L-3D) SCORE: 9.1968 PREV: 5(+2) H3/L5
LAST WEEK: W 1-0 at Portland
Until Saturday no team had held The Timbers off the score sheet. And while it was not pretty (as is the case for most SKC matches), it was again effective as SKC went into Providence Park, and yet again walked out with all three points thanks to a Dom Dwyer goal about midway in the second half. Things don't get any easier for Peter Vermes's squad as a trip to fellow unbeaten FC Dallas is next, for an early season rematch.
NEXT WEEK: AT #2 FC DALLAS SATURDAY APRIL 22, 5PM
#4 ORLANDO CITY SC (4W-1L-0D) SCORE: 8.7068 PREV: 8 (+4) H4/L8
LAST WEEK: W 2-1 v Los Angeles Galaxy
Former Timber Will Johnson scored an absolute beauty in the 9th minute, and Cyle Larin banged home the winner (assisted by Will Johnson) in stoppage time as Orlando becomes the first team in MLS history to open a stadium with four straight wins. The question that remains, however, is whether or not they will be able to get points on the road, but if they keep racking up the points at home, they will be in a good spot when playoff time comes around.
NEXT WEEK: AT #7 NYCFC SUNDAY APRIL 23, 1030AM (FS1)
#5 CHICAGO FIRE (3W-1L-2D) SCORE: 8.5172 PREV: 9 (+4)
LAST WEEK: W 3-0 v New England
Bastian Schweinsteiger scored his second goal of the season and Nemanja Nikolic had a second half brace to dispatch a Revolution squad that was reduced to 10 men when Je-Vaughn Watson earned his 2nd yellow card about halfway through the first half. The Fire are unbeaten since the German joined the team, although all 3 matches have been at home. Whether that will continue on the road is still to be seen, as a 3 game road trip looms.
NEXT WEEK: AT #10 TORONTO FC FRIDAY APRIL 21, 430PM
#6 PORTLAND TIMBERS (4W-2L-1D) SCORE: 7.4699 PREV: 1 (-5) H1/L6
LAST WEEK: L 1-0 v Sporting KC
For whatever reason, Portland is unable to solve Sporting KC at Providence Park, losing another ugly 1-0 match that saw the home team completely out of sorts throughout most of the match. There were very few bright spots for The Timbers, with Darlington Nagbes Goal-of-The-Year-If-Went-In shot being just barely deflected by Tim Melia to bounce harmlessly off the crossbar being the best. Yes the officiating was horrendous, but Portland did not take advantage of the few opportunities they had, and regretted it after the final whistle. Now with only 1 win in their last 4 matches are we starting to see some cracks in a team that was expected to contend for the Supporters Shield this year? Hopefully for RCTID faithful a home Cascadia match can get things back on track.
NEXT WEEK: # 19 VANCOUVER WHITECAPS SATURDAY APRIL 22, 1PM
#7 NEW YORK CITY FC (3W-2L-1D) SCORE: 7.4521 PREV: 11 (+4) H7/L11
LAST WEEK: W 2-0 at Philadelphia
It was late in the match, the Union were looking for the equalizer, then David Villa did THIS to solidify NYCFCs first win on the road in 2017.
NEXT WEEK: #4 ORLANDO SUNDAY APR 23, 1030AM (FS1)
#8 ATLANTA UNITED (2W-2L-2D) SCORE: 7.37 PREV: 6 (-2) H6/L8
LAST WEEK: L 2-1 at Montreal
A first half red card/pk double whammy ended up being a decisive factor as Atlanta gave Montreal their first win of the year despite Kenwyne Jones scoring his first MLS goal in the 40th minute to take an early 1-0 lead. Despite that, it looked like the visitors were gonna walk away with a well earned point before Anthony Jackson-Hamel won it in the 3rd minute of stoppage time.
NEXT WEEK: AT #17 REAL SALT LAKE SATURDAY APR 22, 630PM
#9 HOUSTON DYNAMO (3W-2L-1D) SCORE: 6.5628 PREV: 4 (-5) H4/L9
LAST WEEK: D 2-2 v Minnesota
Up 2-0 at the half, at home, against Minnesota who had yet to take a single shot on goal, and had to make TWO injury substitutions (including their Keeper), Houston had to think that this was in the bag. Not so fast said Christian Ramirez and Johan Venegas scoring at the 47 and 59 minute mark respectively in the Loons only two shots on frame.
NEXT WEEK: #13 SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES SATURDAY APRIL 22, 1PM (UNIMAS, FB LIVE)
#10 TORONTO FC (1W-1L-4D) SCORE: 6.3754 PREV: 10 (NC) H10/L10
LAST WEEK: L 2-1 at Columbus
Offensive woes continue for Toronto for anyone not named Jozy Altidore. The USMNT striker bagged his team leading third goal of the season in the first half, but that was not enough for the Reds to leave Ohio with anything more than an empty feeling, suffering their first defeat of the year.
NEXT WEEK: #5 CHICAGO FRIDAY APRIL 21, 430PM
#11 NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION (2W-3L-1D) SCORE: 6.2384 PREV: 7 (-4) H7/L11
LAST WEEK: L 3-0 AT CHICAGO
Winning on the Road in MLS is hard, winning on the road when you are down a man for almost 75 minutes is nigh on impossible. A double game week at home, however, can give the Revs a chance at some redemption.
NEXT WEEK: #12 SAN JOSE WEDNESDAY APRIL 19, 430PM #18 DC UNITED SATURDAY APRIL 22, 430PM
#12 SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES (2W-2L-2D) SCORE: 5.9437 PREV: 13 (+1) H12/L13
LAST WEEK: D 1-1 v Dallas
Two weeks, two home games, two points salvaged at the death. For the second week in a row the Quakes earned a "Draw that feels like a win" with Walk Off Draws. After conceding in the 78th minute it felt like San Jose would suffer their first defeat at home this year, until Jahmir Hyka opened his account on the final kick of the game. Now, they have a double road game week with a cross country trip to New England followed by a trip to a Houston team eager to get the taste of a disappointing draw out of their mouths. They could possibly either shoot up the rankings, or perhaps plummet.
NEXT WEEK: #11 NEW ENGLAND WEDNESDAY APRIL 19, 430PM #9 HOUSTON SATURDAY APRIL 22, 1PM
#13 MONTREAL IMPACT (1W-2L-3D) SCORE: 5.575 PREV: 18 (+5) H13/L18
LAST WEEK: W 2-1 v Atlanta
The zero wins club is down to 1 as Montreal finally found a stoppage time winner against a short handed Atlanta squad. Despite the one man advantage for the entire second half it was doubtful the Impact would be able to get all the points, until Jackson-Hamel decided to get a bit cheeky with a goal that any other week would likely be a GotW. Montreal has a decent chance to string 2 wins together as a trip to Philly is next on the docket.
NEXT WEEK: AT #22 PHILADELPHIA SATURDAY APR 22 10AM
#14 SEATTLE SOUNDERS (1W-2L-3D) SCORE: 5.3429 PREV: 12 (-2) H12/L14
LAST WEEK: L 2-1 at Vancouver
The defending MLS Cup Champions faced off against the defending Cascadia Cup champions in the first Cascadia match of 2017, and watched as their first ever goal scorer Freddy Montero dropped a brace on them. The Sounders didn't give up early as Will Bruin pulled one back in the 89th minute and Seattle sent wave after wave of pressure and forced two goal line clearances late in the game from Vancouver in an ultimately futile comeback attempt. Interesting stat from Opta is that Vancouver is one of 2 teams in MLS that Clint Dempsey has faced at least 3 times, yet not scored against (the other being SKC).
NEXT WEEK: AT #15 LOS ANGELES GALAXY SUNDAY APRIL 23, 1PM (ESPN)
#15 LOS ANGELES GALAXY (2W-4L-0D) SCORE: 5.3009 PREV: 14 (-1) H14/L15
LAST WEEK: L 2-1 at Orlando
For a few minutes in the second half, the Galaxy put a lot of pressure on Orlando, capped by Alessandrini’s fourth goal of the season. But for most of the game, the Galaxy were back on their heels as they dropped to 2-4-0 on the season as they continue to find their way under first-year head coach Curt Onalfo.
NEXT WEEK: #14 SEATTLE SUNDAY APRIL 23, 1PM (ESPN)
#16 NEW YORK RED BULLS (3W-3L-1D) SCORE: 5.2286 PREV: 15 (-1) H15/L16
LAST WEEK: W 2-0 v DC United
New York scored multiple goals, without the help of an own goal, for the first time this season, after scoring just once in their previous three matches. Wright-Phillips now has three goals in his last five matches as the two-time MLS Golden Boot winner attempts to live up to his own lofty standards. The Red Bulls were able to snap a 4 game winless streak, but the road doesnt get much easier from here.NEXT WEEK: #1 COLUMBUS CREW SATURDAY APRIL 22, 430PM
#17 REAL SALT LAKE (2W-3L-2D) SCORE: 4.885 PREV: 20 (+3) H17/L20
LAST WEEK: W 2-1 at Colorado
Two wins now for new Coach Mike Petke thanks to 2 goals in the final 5 minutes of regular time has RSL starting to climb out of the cellar, both in the standings and the FPI. The before-and-after picture is still being shaken into focus, but RSL's season currently consists of the time before Petke (no wins) and after Petke (two wins ... in a row). Whereas last week showed how much potential this club has to be explosive offensively, here RSL got to show off their resiliency.
NEXT WEEK: #8 ATLANTA SATURDAY APRIL 22 630PM
#18 DC UNITED (2W-3L-1D) SCORE: 4.5515 PREV: 16 (-2) H16/L18
LAST WEEK: L 2-0 at New York Red Bulls
DCs Keeper Bill Hamid will wish he had this game back, Muyl placed his header well on his opening goal, but Hamid still might’ve done better after getting his palms to it. Then came Wright-Phillips’ wicked shot through the legs, a blush-inducing moment Hamid is likely to hear about in Harrison for years. He'll get his first chance at redemption this Saturday against New England.
NEXT WEEK: AT #11 NEW ENGLAND SATURDAY APRIL 22, 430PM
#19 VANCOUVER WHITECAPS (2W-3L-1D) SCORE: 3.7521 PREV: 22 (+3) H19/L22
LAST WEEK: W 2-1 v Seattle
What's better than scoring against one of your biggest rivals? Scoring a Brace against them. What's better than scoring a brace against your rivals? When that rival is your former team. That is exactly what Freddy Montero did this last week to get the Whitecaps Cascadia Cup defense off on the right foot. It took some frantic defending and world class saves by David Ousted but Vancouver has now won 2 of their last 3, and hope to take a strangle hold on the Cascadia Cup with a trip to Portland next up.
NEXT WEEK: AT #6 PORTLAND SATURDAY APRIL 22 1PM
#20 MINNESOTA UNITED (1W-4L-2D) SCORE: 3.3883 PREV: 19 (-1) H19/L20
LAST WEEK: D 2-2 at Houston
The Loons showed a level of resiliency that had thus far been lacking in 2017 as they came back from a 2-0 halftime deficit on the road after losing two players to injury to earn a valuable road point. And while they have a long way to go to be competitive in MLS, they may have started to turn the corner.
NEXT WEEK: #21 COLORADO SUNDAY APRIL 23, 3PM
#21 COLORADO RAPIDS (1W-3L-1D) SCORE: 3.1689 PREV: 17 (-4) H17/L21
LAST WEEK: L 2-1 v Real Salt Lake
The Tim Howard-less Rapids looked like they were headed for a classic 1-0 home win until they gave up two late goals to drop the points. This marks 2 straight home games where Colorado has given up multiple goals, something they haven't done since August 1st and 8th of 2015 when they lost 3-1 and 2-1 to LA and Columbus respectively.NEXT WEEK: AT #20 MINNESOTA SUNDAY APRIL 23, 3PM
#22 PHILADELPHIA UNION (0W-4L-2D) SCORE: 1.7155 PREV 21 (-1) H21/L22
LAST WEEK: L 2-0 v NYCFC
The Union are now the last team in MLS to record a win in 2017, And will enter this weeks match against Montreal at 238 days and counting since they last won an MLS regular season game. Should they lose that match, they will be in serious jeopardy of having a net negative FPI score (already their PreSOS Score is -1.3667 the only sub zero score in the league). The goal they gave up to David Villa has basically been their season in micro chasm.
NEXT WEEK: #13 MONTREAL SATURDAY APRIL 22 10AM
Last week The FPI went 3-8 (getting only NYC, Orlando, and Columbus W correct) but let’s try again.
San Jose at New England: New England WIN
Chicago at Toronto: DRAW
Montreal at Philadelphia: Montreal WIN
San Jose at Houston: Houston WIN
Vancouver at Portland: Portland WIN
DC United at New England: New England WIN
Columbus at NYRB: Columbus WIN
SKC at FC Dallas: DRAW
Atlanta at RSL: Atlanta WIN
Orlando at NYCFC: DRAW
Seattle at LA Galaxy: DRAW
Colorado at Minnesota: DRAW