Another week of MLS action is in the books, and a new name is on the letterhead as the Freborg Power Index is being renamed the “Stumptown Footy Power Index (SFPI)”. And for the first time this year, a team has held on to the top spot two consecutive weeks as FC Dallas fought back for a gritty home draw against Portland. However, their score did drop and the margin between them and # 2 has narrowed. The biggest winners this week were NYCFC and DC United who both jumped 8 spots after solid road wins against (at the time) Top-5 teams. The biggest loser was Atlanta United falling 7 slots after a bad home loss.
Here is what goes into the SFPI:
PPG Score: Teams overall Points Per Game added to their Points Per Game over their last 5 matches, with Last 5 being given more weight. This is the largest component of the SFPI.
Goal Difference Per Game: Teams goal difference divided by games played.
Home/Away Bonus: Bonus points are awarded for earning results (W/D) on the road, and deducted for dropping results (D/L) at home. Accrues over entire season (so that week 1 home loss will still be costing you come week 34)
Pre-SoS Score: Add the above scores together to make the Pre-SoS score.
Strength of Schedule: The average of the Pre-SoS scores of a teams opponents, weighted at less than 100%.
Total Score: Pre-SoS and Strength of Schedule added together to create Total Score. Teams are then ranked from highest to lowest by total score.
(all times Pacific)
1: FC DALLAS (15pts 4W-0L-3D) SCORE: 9.5679 PREV: 1 (NC) H1/L2
LAST WEEK: D2-2 vs Portland Timbers
FC Dallas remains the lone unbeaten team in MLS following a gritty 2-2 draw against Portland, but it was not easy, nor was it without drama. trailing at two different points in the match The Burn had to dig deep to find not one, but two equalizers, the first from a moment of brilliance by team goal leader (and former Timber) Maximilliano Urruti, the second off a defensive miscue and a point blank tap in by Tesho Akindele . As such, while they remain in 1st place in the SFPI, their grip is a lot more tenuous than it was last week.
NEXT WEEK: SATURDAY 5/6 at (18) Real Salt Lake 630pm
2: SPORTING KC (15pts 4W-1L-3D) SCORE: 9.329 PREV: 3 (+1) H2/L5
LAST WEEK: W 3-0 vs Real Salt Lake
Sporting Kansas City was all business in a convincing 3-0 win over Real Salt Lake on a cold, rainy Saturday night at Children's Mercy Park. Benny Feilhaber got the got home side on the board early, first winning a ball back and then finishing the play with a curling shot from just outside the box. Dom Dwyer doubled the lead shortly after halftime from a similar distance when he ripped a low shot for his third goal of the year. Gerso Fernandes put the finishing touches on the rout with his stoppage time goal. The win extended SKC's home undefeated streak to a club-record 13 straight games.
NEXT WEEK: Wednesday 5/3 vs (7) New York Red Bulls 530pm, Sunday 5/7 at (19) Minnesota United 1030am (FS1)
3: ORLANDO CITY SC (18pts 6W-1L-0D) SCORE: 9.2765 PREV: 2 (-1) H2/L8
LAST WEEK: W 2-0 vs Colorado Rapids
How do you win, for the 6th time in 7 matches, and still drop in the power rankings? Well, you do that by having the easiest schedule in the league (thank you negative Pre-SoS score Colorado) and by having 5 of your games at home where there are no bonus points for winning. If even ONE of those 5 home wins had been on the road they would be Number 1. Good news is four of their next six are away from home, so will they soar up the rankings? Or fall back down to Earth?
NEXT WEEK: Wednesday 5/3 at (6) Toronto FC 430pm. Saturday 5/6 at (9) Houston Dynamo 530pm
4: NYCFC (13pts 4W-3L-1D) SCORE: 8.1254 PREV: 12 (+8) H4/L12
LAST WEEK: W 3-2 at Columbus Crew
With David Villa unavailable because of an illness and Andrea Pirlo unused on the substitute's bench, Sean Okoli made his first start as the lone forward and Yangel Herrera, who replaced Pirlo, scored his first MLS goal before setting up Jack Harrison's winner. Harrison, meanwhile, had his first multi-goal game of his career. NYCFC improved to 3-3 all-time without Villa in the lineup.
NEXT WEEK: Sunday 5/7 vs (11) Atlanta United 1pm (Univision)
5: PORTLAND TIMBERS (17pts 5W-2L-2D) SCORE: 7.9439 PREV: 6 (+1) H1/L6
LAST WEEK: D 2-2 at FC Dallas
No matter how you slice it, that was a VERY GOOD road point for the Western Conference leaders. But looking at the game Portland has to feel like they left points on the field. While there is very little they could have done about Urruti's brilliant goal, the defensive miscue that led to the second will eat at them for weeks to come. Jeff Attinella continued to show why he is the best backup in the league with two BIG second half saves to bring a point back to the PNW. Another Western Conference road test awaits however.
NEXT WEEK: Saturday 5/6 at (15) San Jose Earthquakes 730pm
6: TORONTO FC (13pts 3W-1L-4D) SCORE: 7.507 PREV: 7 (+1) H6/L10
LAST WEEK: W 2-0 vs Houston Dynamo
Last week, Sebastian Giovinco nabbed the brace to get TFC the win, and this time Altidore took center stage. It's not exactly been a bad start for the striker, who now has five goals in eight appearances this season, but he hadn't quite taken games over yet this year. With the performance against Houston, he can say he has done that.
NEXT WEEK: Wednesday 5/3 vs (3) Orlando City SC 430pm. Saturday 5/6 at (13) Seattle Sounders
7: NEW YORK RED BULLS (16pts 5W-3L-1D) SCORE: 7.4715 PREV: 10 (+3) H7/L16
LAST WEEK: W 2-1 vs Chicago Fire
New York spoiled the return of Red Bull Legend Dax McCarty thanks to a Kemar Lawrence goal in the 71st minute to complete a 3 game home stand that saw them bag all 9 points and extend their home unbeaten streak to 19 straight dating back to last season. With a double road game week coming up (one at winless Philadelphia), followed by another 3 game home stand, New York will look to keep pace with red hot Orlando.
NEXT WEEK: Wednesday 5/3 at (2) Sporting KC 530pm, Saturday 5/6 at (21) Philadelphia Union 4pm
8: DC UNITED (11pts 3W-3L-2D) SCORE: 6.8018 PREV: 16 (+8) H8/L18
LAST WEEK: W 3-1 at Atlanta United
After a slow start to the season, DC United found a way to pass their toughest road test of the season riding Keeper Bill Hamid's standout performance and 3 goals coming against the run of play to stun the high flying newcomers to MLS, despite being completely and utterly dominated in nearly every statistical category. Now with three very winnable home games coming up (MTL, PHI, and CHI) DC is looking to shoot up the Eastern Conference Table.
NEXT WEEK: Saturday 5/6 vs (17) Montreal Impact 3pm
9: COLUMBUS CREW SC (13pts 4W-4L-1D) SCORE: 6.6654 PREV: 5 (-4) H1/L9
LAST WEEK: L 3-2 vs NYCFC
Amazing how things can change over the course of just a few weeks. Three weeks ago, the Crew had won 4 of their last 5 including wins over Portland and Orlando. Now after losing two straight, they have only won one of their last 4, and after being tied for the Supporters Shield lead, sit five points back.
NEXT WEEK: Saturday 5/6 vs (16) New England Revolution 430pm
10: HOUSTON DYNAMO (13pts 4W-3L-1D) SCORE: 6.6398 PREV: 9 (-1) H4/L10
LAST WEEK: L 2-0 at Toronto FC
Another team that started hot, then cooled off quickly is Houston. To be fair all three of their losses have come on the road, while they are unbeaten at home, but road points are vital if teams want to make the playoffs (Just ask the 2016 Portland Timbers). Of course the going doesn't get any easier as Orlando is the next team to visit BBVA Compass Stadium.
NEXT WEEK: Saturday 5/6 vs (3) Orlando 530pm
11: ATLANTA UNITED (13pts 3W-3L-2D) SCORE: 6.4422 PREV: 4 (-7) H4/L11
LAST WEEK: L 3-1 vs DC United
This one is going to sting for a while. Possession: 74-26, Shots: 26-9, Corners: 5-2, Passing: 637-226, Passing Accuracy : 84-56 Crosses: 18-5. By all metrics, save the all important score line, Atlanta completely outclassed DC United. But there is only one stat that matters, and on that front Atlanta was the weaker team on the night. Now they have some questions to answer as they have only won one of their last 5 and have two big road games coming up.
NEXT WEEK: Sunday 5/7 at (4) NYCFC 1pm (Univision)
12: SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES (12pts 3W-3L-3D) SCORE: 6.3284 PREV: 15 (+3) H12/L15
LAST WEEK: W 1-0 at Minnesota United
Still a long way to go, but 4 points from a 3 game road trip is a respectable haul, and now it is back to Avaya Stadium for the last match of their toughest 5 game stretch for the season, (FC Dallas, at New England, at Houston, at Minnesota, Portland). If they can get at least one more point out of it, that would have to be considered a successful run through the gauntlet.
NEXT WEEK: Saturday 5/6 vs (5) Portland Timbers 730pm
13: SEATTLE SOUNDERS (10pts 2W-2L-4D) SCORE: 6.2568 PREV: 8 (-5) H8/L14
LAST WEEK: D 3-3 vs New England Revolution
As fast as picking up road results will shoot you up the SFPI, dropping home results will send you down just as quickly. Seattle is lucky to even be this high following a 15 minute desperation push that saw them come all the way back from 3-0 down at home to salvage a point. However, the SFPI doesn't care about that. All it sees is dropped points at home with 1 win in last 5. With a MLS Cup rematch coming up against a surging Toronto team eager to exact some revenge, those home results better start coming soon.
NEXT WEEK: Saturday 5/6 vs (6) Toronto FC 12pm (ESPN)
14: CHICAGO FIRE (11pts 3W-3L-2D) SCORE: 5.8401 PREV: 11 (-3) H5/L14
LAST WEEK: L 2-1 at New York Red Bulls
At least Dax McCarty got the assist on the first home goal conceded in 2017 by his former team. But otherwise it was an unsuccessful homecoming for the former RBNY Captain. Chicago will be happy to get this three game road trip over and done with but will hope to not come home empty handed against a suddenly listless Galaxy squad.
NEXT WEEK: Saturday 5/6 at (20) Los Angeles Galaxy 730pm
15: VANCOUVER WHITECAPS (10pts 3W-4L-1D) SCORE: 5.6529 PREV: 20 (+5) H15/L22
LAST WEEK: W 2-1 at Montreal Impact
The 'Caps got their first road points of 2017, and got it against their Canadian brethren as they went into Stade Saputo and rallied to a 2-1 victory against the Montreal Impact. Andrew Jacobson started the Vancouver comeback with a nice volley from outside the penalty area in the 29th minute, and Cristian Techera bagged the late winner.
NEXT WEEK: Friday 5/5 at (22) Colorado Rapids 7pm
16: NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION (10pts 2W-3L-4D) SCORE: 5.5071 PREV: 13 (-3) H7/L16
LAST WEEK: D 3-3 at Seattle Sounders
On the plus side, New England has earned road points against the last two MLS Cup Champions this season. And objectively speaking, getting a point following a cross country trip, and against the defending champs, is a good trip. HOWEVER, being up 3-0 in the 75th minute and not finding a way to see the match out is extremely disappointing and New England may be ruing these 2 dropped points come playoff time.
NEXT WEEK: Saturday 5/6 at (9) Columbus Crew 430pm
17: MONTREAL IMPACT (7pts 1W-3L-4D) SCORE: 3.9865 PREV: 14 (-3) H13/L17
LAST WEEK: L 2-1 vs Vancouver Whitecaps
The Impact's attack was almost nowhere to be found. As they struggled mightily in the final third, with almost nothing coming up the middle and the wide play being subpar. Ignacio Piatti was held largely in check over the course of the 90 minutes, and Montreal never found a way to create much danger. Even their goal came from a long-range solo effort. Sure, it did not help matters that they were forced into making a fifth-minute substitution because of an injury to striker Matteo Mancosu, but this was still a very poor performance up front.
NEXT WEEK: Saturday 5/6 at (8) DC United 3pm
18: REAL SALT LAKE (8pts 2W-5L-2D) SCORE: 3.8604 PREV 17 (-1) H17/L20
LAST WEEK: L3-0 at Sporting KC
After scoring 5 goals in their first two matches under their new head coach and conceding 1, they have scored 1 and conceded 6 in the last two. And with a very tough schedule coming up with matches at home against FCD and NYC alternating with road trips to NER and Seattle, Mike Petke will need to change something up, or this season could be lost heading into the summer. Hopefully Beckerman and Rimando come back from injury soon.
NEXT WEEK: Saturday 5/6 vs (1) FC Dallas 630pm
19: MINNESOTA UNITED (8pts 2W-5L-2D) SCORE: 3.1968 PREV: 19 (NC) H19/L20
LAST WEEK: L 1-0 vs San Jose Earthquakes
After allowing 24 goals in their first seven games, Minnesota United posted their first clean sheet in Game 8 and after a scoreless first half Saturday had stretched their scoreless streak to four consecutive halves - 183 minutes overall. The streak ended with Florian Jungwirth's goal at 191 minutes. Now the question becomes can they start scoring at a consistent rate?
NEXT WEEK: Sunday 5/7 vs (2) Sporting KC 1030am (FS1)
20: LOS ANGELES GALAXY (7pts 2W-5L-1D) SCORE: 3.1259 PREV: 18 (-2) H14/L20
LAST WEEK: D 0-0 vs Philadelphia Union
If ever there was a chance to start an early season turnaround this was it. At home against the only winless team in MLS, and they could not find a way to get a shot in the net (with Joao Pedro pulling a Double Post in the 21st minute being one of the Galaxys best chances on the night). The Galaxy have now been shut out at home for back to back matches for the first time since 2006 when they lost 3-0 vs Real Salt Lake on May 13, then lost 1-0 vs Colorado on May 20.
NEXT WEEK: Saturday 5/6 vs (14) Chicago Fire.
21: PHILADELPHIA UNION (4pts 0W-4L-4D) SCORE: 2.4591 PREV: 22 (+1) H21/L22
LAST WEEK: D 0-0 at Los Angeles Galaxy
Going to a place you have only gotten points from once in your history and heading home with a point has to be considered a small win in a season that has yet to see a real one. This is already the 4th longest winless streak in MLS history at 15 games (San Jose's 16 game skid over the final 15 of 2014 and the first game of 2015 is next) and they will now be at 252 days and counting since their last regular season win when they host the Red Bulls on Saturday. But hey, they are no longer holding up the SFPI, so that counts for something, right?
NEXT WEEK: Saturday 5/6 vs (7) NYRB 4pm
22: COLORADO RAPIDS (4pts 1W-5L-1D) SCORE: 2.0369 PREV: 21 (-1) H17/L22
LAST WEEK: L 2-0 at Orlando City SC
How bad do you have to be to fall below a team that is on a historic winless streak? Well, you have to be on a 4 match losing streak and have only earned 1 point out of your last 6 matches including being shut out on the road for two straight games, and have done it all against a strength of schedule that is right smack dab in the middle of the league (11th of 22) whereas that winless team at least has the excuse of 2nd toughest. All the breaks that went their way last year, are going the other way this year. A home loss against Vancouver next week will put them dangerously close to an overall negative total score.
NEXT WEEK: Friday 5/5 vs (15) Vancouver Whitecaps 7pm
PREDICTIONS: Last week I went 2-9 in predictions bringing me to 8-26 on the season, so I give up, I’ve officially got nothing.