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SFPI MLS Week 18 Power Rankings

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#Murica! Edition

MLS: Atlanta United FC at Portland Timbers Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

Another week is finished, and there is one more set of matches before breaking for the Gold Cup. Hopefully all have a safe and fun July 4th before hitting the Pitch on the 5th. As always it was an eventful week, the biggest winner this week is Orlando as they climb 6 spots, with a much needed road win, meanwhile LA Galaxy is the biggest loser falling 8 places after back to back losses including a last second rivalry loss. Biggest point increase is Atlanta United (+1.3818) and biggest point decrease is Real Salt Lake (-1.4789).

COMPONENTS OF SFPI

PERFORMANCE SCORE: The following components create a teams Performance Score:

PPG Score: A teams overall Points Per Game added to their Points Per Game over last five matches. Last five is given more weight. This is the largest single component of the SFPI

Goal Difference per Game: A teams overall Goal Difference divided by games played.

Home/Away Bonus: Bonus points are added for earning results (W/D) on the road, while an equal number of points are subtracted for dropping results (D/L) at home. Accrues over entire season.

STRENGTH OF SCHEDULE SCORE: The average Performance Score of all of a teams opponents to date, weighted at less than 100% Teams that are faced multiple times are added multiple times (ex: Portland has played Seattle twice, so Seattles Performance Score is added twice).

TOTAL SCORE: Performance Score is added to Strength of Schedule to create a Total Score. Teams are then ranked from highest to lowest by Total Score.

(all times Pacific)

(*Denotes that team is currently above the Red Line)

1: *CHICAGO FIRE: (37pts 11W-3L-4D) SCORE: 10.5304 (+0.243) PREVIOUS: 1 (NC) H1/L14

LAST WEEK: W 4-0 vs Vancouver

SCHEDULE: 17

As it is 4th of July weekend it is probably appropriate that the colors of the team in first place are Red, White, and Blue. And the hottest team in MLS (currently riding a 10 game unbeaten streak where they are 9W-0L-1D) jumped out to an early 3-0 lead at home, and eventually scored one more after vancouver went down to 10 men for an easy 4-0 win. The one downside is that Bastian Schweinsteiger left late in the first half with right hip pain. His status for Portland is currently unknown.

NEXT WEEK: at (10) Portland Wednesday 7/5 730pm

2: *NEW YORK CITY FC: (33pts 10W-5L-3D) SCORE: 9.8004 (+1.111) PREVIOUS: 3 (+1) H2/L12

LAST WEEK: W 3-1 vs Minnesota

SCHEDULE: 22

New York City FC cruised to a 3-1 win over Minnesota United FC with three unanswered goals, two in the second half for its fifth straight league victory. After Alexander Callens tied the score, 1-1, with a 38th-minute goal, Jack Harrison and David Villa scored on the other side of halftime to put the match to bed for NYCFC. NYCFC played without defenders Ethan White and RJ Allen, who were both benched by coach Patrick Vieira for being late to a pre-match meeting. Ronald Matarrita started at left back with Ben Sweat moving to the right side, and Matarrita had to be subbed out in the 10th minute due to injury. Villa's goal was his 11th of the season, tops for New York City FC this season. Rodney Wallace and Sweat provided assists on the goals for Harrison and Callens.

NEXT WEEK: at (11) Vancouver Wednesday 7/5 7pm

3: *TORONTO FC: (35pts 10W-3L-5D) SCORE: 9.5171 (-0.6557) PREVIOUS: 2 (-1) H1/L10

LAST WEEK: L 3-1 at FC Dallas

SCHEDULE: 14

A bit of a Canadian Championship hangover? Perhaps, Greg Vanney’s team was not the sharpest after having to travel down to Texas and were also without some key contributors in Victor Vazquez, Justin Morrow, Raheem Edwards and Steven Beitashour. But they have already secured their spot in next years CCL so a midseason loss to a Western Conference team won't bother them too much.

NEXT WEEK: at (7) Orlando Wednesday 7/5 430pm

4: *ATLANTA UNITED (27pts 8W-7L-3D) SCORE: 8.3368 (+1.3818) PREVIOUS: 6 (+2) H3/L12

LAST WEEK: W 2-0 at Columbus

SCHEDULE: 11

The second brace in the MLS career of Hector Villalba was enough to power visiting Atlanta United FC to a 2-0 victory over hosts Columbus Crew SC at MAPFRE Stadium Saturday night, ending a three-game road losing streak and a five-game winless streak away from home for the expansion club and lifting them above Columbus in the Eastern Conference standings. Villalba opened the scoring in the 27th minute, off an assist from Atlanta goalkeeper Alec Kann, and doubled the lead for the visitors with his eighth goal of the season in the 64th minute to secure a season sweep of Crew SC, unfortunately for him he was subbed off just minutes later with an aparrent toe injury.

NEXT WEEK: vs (9) San Jose Earthquakes Tuesday 7/4 4pm

5: *SPORTING KANSAS CITY (31pts 8W-4L-7D) SCORE: 8.0757 (-0.0352) PREVIOUS: 4 (-1) H2/L11

LAST WEEK: D 1-1 vs Portland

SCHEDULE: 21

SKC was minus Dom Dwyer, Graham Zusi, and Matt Besler who all started for the USMNT. They still were able to ride homegrown product Daniel Salloi, and a second half PK save by Tim Melia to get the come from behind draw to remain unbeaten at Childrens Mercy Park in 2017.

NEXT WEEK: vs (18) Philadelphia Thursday 7/6 530pm

6: *FC DALLAS (28pts 7W-3L-7D) SCORE: 7.971 (+0.6222) PREVIOUS: 5 (-1) H1/L12

LAST WEEK: W 3-1 vs Toronto

SCHEDULE: 7

Roland Lamah nabbed a first half brace, and Maxi Urruti put the game to bed in the 78th minute matching his career high for goals in an MLS season with 10 (although it has taken him 150 more minutes to reach 10 in 2017 than it did in 2014 with Portland). He also matched his career high for assists with his 4th one of the season, matching his total from 2016. Dallas did this without Matt Hedges or Kellyn Acosta, who were both on national team duty.

NEXT WEEK: vs (20) DC United Tuesday 7/4 530pm

7: *ORLANDO CITY SC (29pts 8W-6L-5D) SCORE: 6.4646 (+0.4767) PREVIOUS: 13 (+6) H2/L19

LAST WEEK: W 1-0 at Real Salt Lake

SCHEDULE: 3

Will Johnson scored against one of his former teams off a rebound in the 17th minute, and Orlando snapped a 4 game winless streak and earned their first win against RSL since joining MLS. The match also saw the return of Cyle Larin following his DUI arrest and resulting suspension while undergoing the leagues Substance Abuse and Behavioral Health program.

NEXT WEEK: vs (3) Toronto Wednesday 7/5 430pm

8: MONTREAL IMPACT (21pts 5W-5L-6D) SCORE: 6.4455 (+0.0703) PREVIOUS: 8 (NC) H6/L17

LAST WEEK: W 2-0 vs DC United

SCHEDULE: 10

Blerim Dzemaili scored on a 25-yard cracker in the 21st minute and then set up Chris Duvall's second career MLS goal with a deft chip two minutes later, helping the Montreal Impact to a 2-0 victory over D.C. United on Saturday evening at Stade Saputo, despite missing Ignacio Piatti who was injured in The Impacts Canadian Championship loss to Toronto.

NEXT WEEK: at (14) Houston Wednesday 7/5 530pm

9: *SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES (26pts 7W-6L-5D) SCORE: 6.0411 (+0.0269) PREVIOUS: 12 (+3) H5/L17

LAST WEEK: W 2-1 vs Los Angeles

SCHEDULE: 13

The San Jose Earthquakes were able to come from behind and grab a 2-1 victory in the Cali Clasico. It's a result that pushes the Earthquakes forward in the Western Conference. The Quakes winner came from Shea Salinas, who entered as a sub and blasted a rocket past Clement Diop. San Jose was able to pull level 18 minutes earlier on a rare goalkeeper assist, with David Bingham finding Chris Wondolowski at full sprint. Wondolowski was able to create space off his marker, Jaime Villarreal, with a nice reverse.

NEXT WEEK: at (4) Atlanta Tuesday 7/4 4pm

10: *PORTLAND TIMBERS (26pts 7W-7L-5D) SCORE: 5.918 (-0.4221) PREVIOUS: 9 (-1) H1/L17

LAST WEEK: D 1-1 at Sporting Kansas City

SCHEDULE: 15

Taken on its own, on the road against the conference leaders, minus both your defensive midfielders, and your captain centerback, following a stretch of 4 games in 15 days this was a good point. Taken in context of the rest of the season it is continued cause for concern as Portland has only won twice in its last 11 matches with 4 draws and 5 losses in that span. In those 9 matches they have dropped 12 points in the second half of games. 11 of them from winning positions (2 at Dallas, 2 vs Atlanta, 3 at Colorado, 1 at Minnesota, 2 vs Seattle, and 2 at KC). Picking up even HALF of those dropped points would have the Timbers in first place in the West. Fortunately, despite this run of bad form, the rest of the West is fairly weak and Portland is still tied for 3rd.

NEXT WEEK: vs (1) Chicago Wednesday 7/5 730pm

11: *COLUMBUS CREW SC (25pts 8W-10L-1D) SCORE: 5.6801 (-0.5762) PREVIOUS: 10 (-1) H1/L16

LAST WEEK: L 2-0 vs Atlanta

SCHEDULE: 1

Crew SC started the same XI for the third straight game – the first time they've done that in two years. However, two of those three games were against Atlanta United, and Columbus lost both of those games, sandwiched around a 4-1 win last week over Montreal Impact. Atlanta's Hector Villalba scored three goals in the two games against Columbus, so apparently he's comfortable against the lineup Crew SC chose to go with.

NEXT WEEK: at (21) Minnesota Tuesday 7/4 4pm

12: NEW YORK RED BULLS (23pts 7W-8L-2D) SCORE: 5.4713 (+0.002) PREVIOUS: 15 (+3) H7/L19

LAST WEEK: No League Match

SCHEDULE: 9

NEXT WEEK: at (17) New England Wednesday 7/5 430pm

13: SEATTLE SOUNDERS (21pts 5W-7L-6D) SCORE: 5.317 (-0.1333) PREVIOUS: 16 (+3) H7/L17

LAST WEEK: No League Match

SCHEDULE: 4

NEXT WEEK: at (19) Colorado Tuesday 7/4 6pm

14: *HOUSTON DYNAMO (25pts 7W-7L-4D) SCORE: 5.3143 (-0.6726) PREVIOUS: 14 (NC) H4/L17

LAST WEEK: L 3-1 at Colorado

SCHEDULE: 19

After conceding early, Houston looked like they would make a game of it, scoring deep into first half stoppage time to pull level. But Marlon Hairston netted twice (48' and 69') to keep Houston (0-7-2) winless on the road. It has been a brutal stretch for the Dynamo as they have only played at home twice in their last 8 matches, a 5-1 win against RSL and a 1-1 draw against Dallas. It doesnt get much easier as 3 of their next five are on the road as well.

NEXT WEEK: vs (8) Montreal Wednesday 7/5 530pm

15: *LOS ANGELES GALAXY (22pts 6W-7L-4D) SCORE: 5.2633 (-1.1219) PREVIOUS: 7 (-8) H3/L21

That 8 game unbeaten streak was nice while it lasted, now the Gals have lost two straight. Jelle Van Damme's goal had LA leading most of the game, but his most lasting impact is going to be the two yellow cards he picked up for dissent: The first, arguing a handball non-call in the penalty area; the second, after the match, while San Jose were celebrating. That leaves him out for the Galaxy's Fourth of July game, a harsh blow when LA are currently without 12 players.

NEXT WEEK: vs (22) Salt Lake Tuesday 7/4 730pm

16: VANCOUVER WHITECAPS (21pts 6W-7L-3D) SCORE: 4.9926 (-1.0879) PREVIOUS: 11 (-5) H8/L22

LAST WEEK: L 4-0 at Chicago

SCHEDULE: 12

Things turned pear-shaped for the Whitecaps early, falling in a 3-0 hole before the match was 30 minutes old, as they saw a three-match unbeaten streak come to an end in Chicago. It also meant Vancouver was unable to move above the playoff line and remain one point behind the LA Galaxy.

NEXT WEEK: vs (2) NYCFC Wednesday 7/5 7pm

17: NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION (20pts 5W-8L-5D) SCORE: 4.6979 (-0.4492) PREVIOUS: 17 (NC) H5/L17

LAST WEEK: L 3-0 at Philadelphia

SCHEDULE: 6

With Kelyn Rowe on international duty and Diego Fagundez serving a one-match ban, the Revs' were short on creative players to fight back from the deficit they faced after only four minutes. Head coach Jay Heaps brought on forwards Brian Wright and Femi Hollinger-Janzen, but they also struggled to create any looks and the Revs had just one shot on goal in the second half.

NEXT WEEK: vs (12) NYRB Wednesday 7/5 430pm

18: PHILADELPHIA UNION (22pts 6W-7L-4D) SCORE: 4.5795 (+0.1147) PREVIOUS: 18 (NC) H6/L22

LAST WEEK: W 3-0 vs New England

C.J. Sapong converted early from the penalty spot for his career high-tying ninth goal of the season, Ilsinho and Roland Alberg added emphatically struck goals after halftime, and the Philadelphia Union cruised to a 3-0 victory against the New England Revolution on Sunday. Andre Blake preserved his career-best seventh clean sheet to help the Union to a second straight MLS victory while moving up into eighth in the Eastern Conference table. Philadelphia is now three points off the sixth and final playoff place.

NEXT WEEK: at (5) Kansas City Thursday 7/6 530pm

19: COLORADO RAPIDS (19pts 6W-10L-1D) SCORE: 4.1669 (+0.0687) PREVIOUS: 19 (NC) H17/L22

LAST WEEK: W 3-1 vs Houston

SCHEDULE: 16

The Rapids' attack came to life on Saturday night, as the club posted an impressive 3-1 win at home against the Dynamo. Marlon Hairston and Dominique Badji led the way in the Western Conference victory at Dick's Sporting Goods Park with a brace and three assists, respectively. The Colorado Rapids entered the night with just 15 goals in 16 games, but their attack showed signs of growth and reasons for optimism by putting three up on the Houston Dynamo. While the attack as a whole was improved, Dominique Badji was especially impressive. He used not only his pace to trouble the Dynamo back line, but also his hold-up play and passing en route to record three assists.

NEXT WEEK: vs (13) Seattle Tuesday 7/4 6pm

20: DC UNITED (18pts 5W-10L-3D) SCORE: 3.4979 (+0.003) PREVIOUS: 22 (+2) H8/L22

LAST WEEK: L 2-0 at Montreal

SCHEDULE: 2

DC's scoring woes continue, as they were shut out for the 8th time in their 10 matches (0-7-1), and 12th time overall this season. On the plus side, when they DO score, they are 5-0-1.

NEXT WEEK: vs (6) Dallas Tuesday 7/4 530pm

21: MINNESOTA UNITED (18pts 5W-10L-3D) SCORE: 2.6342 (-0.9956) PREVIOUS: 20 (-1) H19/L22

LAST WEEK: L 3-1 at New York City

Christian 'Batman' Ramirez scored his team leading 10th goal of the year early on, but the Loons could not hold on, conceding 3 unanswered goals and remain winless on the road.

NEXT WEEK: vs (11) Columbus Tuesday 7/4 4pm

22: REAL SALT LAKE (17pts 5W-12L-2D) SCORE: 2.0268 (-1.4789) PREVIOUS: 21 (-1) H17/L22

LAST WEEK: L 1-0 vs Orlando

9 losses in their last 12, 6 of which have been by multiple goals. There seem to be no answers to be had in Sandy as the Claret and Cobalt watched several former names (Kreis, Johnson, Gil, and Toia) come back and take 3 points back with them

NEXT WEEK: at (15) Los Angeles Tuesday 7/4 730pm

PREDICTIONS

Last week I went 4-6. Still pretty close to .500 here are the predictions for this week.

Atlanta at San Jose: DRAW

Columbus at Minnesota: COLUMBUS

DC at Dallas: DALLAS

Seattle at Colorado: DRAW

Salt Lake at LA: LOS ANGELES

NYRB at New England: DRAW

Toronto at Orlando: TORONTO

Montreal at Houston: DRAW

NYCFC at Vancouver: NEW YORK

Chicago at Portland: CHICAGO

Philadelphia at Kansas City: KANSAS CITY