<
>

MLS Power Rankings, Week 12: RSL falls

6/1/2011

The Galaxy is a clear No. 1 as they keep their winning streak going -- they look to make it five in a row Friday night against D.C. United -- and watch out for FC Dallas, which has been just as impressive as L.A.

New York's had some problems, but Luke Rodgers is doing a nice job of playing savior -- and, ultimately, there's just way too much talent not to succeed.

And then there's Real Salt Lake, which topped our Power Rankings from preseason until a week ago, when dipping form and difficulties dealing with Javier Morales' injury knocked them down a peg. This week, the Lions fall from second to fifth.

It seems the April 27 loss to Mexico's Monterrey at Rio Tinto Stadium in the decisive leg of the CONCACAF Champions League final did a real number on RSL's head. It hasn't been the same team since -- none of the bravado, not nearly enough of the energy, not sharp enough -- and Morales' departure has left a creative void.

The Utahns are 1-2-2 since the loss to Monterrey, and the only win in that span was on a late goal against nine-man Chivas USA -- on the afternoon Morales' ankle was snapped.

Morales will be out at least three more months, maybe longer. Chivas forward Marcos Mondaini, who committed the foul that caused the injury, can return to the field Saturday, his four-game suspension done.

This week's rankings:

1. GALAXY (8-2-5, 29 points), Last week: 1

Week 11: Landon Donovan penalty kick beats Houston, Miguel Lopez header wins at New England

Remark: Galaxy has grinded out four successive 1-0 wins, but they're mixing art with the commerce

Off to the Gold Cup: Donovan, MLS's top scorer (with eight goals), is with the U.S. Reigning MLS Goalkeeper of the Year Donovan Ricketts will be in Jamaica's nets

Next: Friday vs. D.C. United at Home Depot Center (Carson), 8 p.m. (Fox Soccer Channel and Fox Deportes)

2. FC DALLAS (6-3-4, 22 points), Last week: 4

Week 11: Brek Shea delivers 1-0 win at Seattle; Hoops settle for 2-2 draw after surrendering two leads at Houston

Remark: Andrew Jacobson's first for Houston ends FCD's shutout streak at 531 minutes -- nearly six full games

Off to the Gold Cup: No departures

Next: Saturday vs. New England, 5:30 p.m. (MLS Direct Kick)

3. NEW YORK RED BULLS (4-2-6, 18 points), Last week: 3

Week 11: Red Bulls rally from deficits three times in draws with Colorado (2-2) and Vancouver (1-1), with Rodgers scoring the decisive goal in both

Remark: Best-team-in-MLS talk dies off as winless streak hits five

Off to the Gold Cup: Bulls take a big hit: Gone are both starting backs (Mexico's Rafa Marquez, U.S.'s Tim Ream), two starting midfielders (Canada's Dwayne De Rosario and Jamaican winger Dane Richards), plus their top threat off the bench (U.S.'s Juan Agudelo)

Next: Saturday vs. Columbus, 4:30 p.m. (MLS Direct Kick)

4. SEATTLE SOUNDERS (5-4-5, 20 points), Last week: 5

Week 11: FC Dallas topples the Emerald men, 1-0, but Patrick Ianni and Lamar Neagle tally late to win, 2-1, at Real Salt Lake

Remark: Newport Beach's Tyson Wahl making big contributions after shift to left back

Off to the Gold Cup: No departures

Next: Saturday at Chicago, 5:30 p.m. (MLS Direct Kick)

5. REAL SALT LAKE (5-2-2, 17 points), Last week: 2

Week 11: Garden Grove teen Luis Gil gets first MLS assist at end of 2-1 loss to Seattle

Remark: Sounders end RSL's 29-game MLS unbeaten streak

Off to the Gold Cup: Alvaro Saborio (Costa Rica), Will Johnson (Canada) and Arturo Alvarez (El Salvador) are gone, but No. 3 U.S. goalkeeper Nick Rimando will stay with the Lions unless needed

Next: Saturday vs. Vancouver, 6 p.m. (MLS Direct Kick)

6. PHILADELPHIA UNION (6-3-2, 20 points), Last week: 8

Week 11: Player of the Week Justin Mapp and Danny Mwanga score twice in 6-2 romp at Toronto FC; former Cal State Fullerton star Gabriel Farfan scores in 1-1 draw with PDL's Reading United in Tuesday's friendly

Remark: If Union could score like that against good teams, they might actually win the East

Off to the Gold Cup: Forward Carlos Ruiz is with Guatemala

Next: Saturday at Colorado, 6 p.m. (MLS Direct Kick)

7. HOUSTON DYNAMO (3-4-6, 15 points), Last week: 6

Week 11: Winless streak hits six with 1-0 loss at Galaxy, 2-2 draw at home vs. FC Dallas

Remark: Spanish forward Koke an ill fit, now gone -- he asks for his release, says he's homesick

Off to the Gold Cup: Backliner Andre Hainault is with Canada, and defender Jermaine Taylor and midfielder Je-Vaughn Watson are with Jamaica

Next: Saturday at San Jose, 7 p.m. (Galavision)

8. COLORADO RAPIDS (4-3-6, 18 points), Last week: 7

Week 11: Jeff Larentowicz scores twice in 2-2 draw at New York, Conor Casey nets his first of the year in 1-1 tie with Sporting Kansas City

Remark: Omar Cummings' return after a month on the sidelines can't hurt toothless attack

Off to the Gold Cup: It's uncertain. Cummings, a late addition to Jamaica's roster, says he won't join up until the group stage is done; defender Tyrone Marshall, also for Jamaica, is considering joining him

Next: Saturday vs. Philadelphia, 6 p.m. (MLS Direct Kick)

9. SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES (3-4-4, 13 points), Last week: 11

Week 11: Two-goal lead is lost in loss on PKs to Chicago in U.S. Open Cup qualifying final, two one-goal advantages are lost in second 2-2 draw with the Fire

Remark: Psst. … We hear a solution to former Loyola Marymount star Rafael Baca's contract situation with the Quakes is near

Off to the Gold Cup: Attackers Chris Wondolowski (U.S.) and Ryan Johnson (Jamaica)

Next: Saturday vs. Houston, 7 p.m. (Galavision)

10. D.C. UNITED (4-4-3, 15 points), Last week: 13

Week 11: Yorba Linda's Chris Pontius is superb in 3-2 win at Portland

Remark: Injury-whittled United's showing all the more impressive after the PK drama; Ben Olsen says he “would’ve followed the referee for 40 minutes and been in his ear and would’ve been useless”

Off to the Gold Cup: Center back Dejan Jakovic (Canada)

Next: Friday vs. Galaxy at Home Depot Center, 8 p.m. (Fox Soccer Channel and Fox Deportes)

11. CHIVAS USA (3-4-4, 13 points), Last week: 10

Week 11: Ante Jazic saves two off the goal line as the Goats surrender three leads in 3-3 tie at Columbus

Remark: Michael UmaƱa, Chris Cortez, Gerson Mayen on target for first starts

Off to the Gold Cup: No departures (why isn't Jazic with Canada?)

Next: Wednesday vs. Vancouver, 7:30 p.m. (Fox Sports West); Saturday vs. Portland, 7:30 p.m. (Prime Ticket)

12. PORTLAND TIMBERS (5-4-2, 17 points), Last week: 9

Week 11: Tree-killers get schooled in 2-0 loss to Ajax Amsterdam in a midweek friendly, then can't shake off D.C. United in 3-2 defeat

Remark: Three tries from the spot, all justified, are needed to score, but Timbers lose at home for the first time in MLS

Off to the Gold Cup: NorCal's Steve Purdy is with El Salvador

Next: Saturday vs. Chivas USA at Home Depot Center (Carson), 7:30 p.m. (Prime Ticket)

13. COLUMBUS CREW (3-3-5, 14 points), Last week: 12

Week 11: Andres Mendoza scores twice, leaves field angrily when subbed out in 3-3 draw with Chivas USA

Remark: Comeback vs. Goats, 6-1 Reserve League romp at New York -- not a bad week

Off to the Gold Cup: Winger Robbie Rogers is with the U.S.

Next: Saturday at New York, 4:30 p.m. (MLS Direct Kick)

14. SPORTING KANSAS CITY (1-6-2, 5 points), Last week: 15

Week 11: Ryan Smith's late goal gives ex-Wizards a 1-1 draw at Colorado

Remark: One last game on the 10-game trip, and Sporting will have a home to call its own

Off to the Gold Cup: Midfielders Craig Rocastle (Grenada) and Stephane Auvray (Guadeloupe), defenders Roger Espinoza (Honduras) and Shavar Thomas (Jamaica)

Next: Saturday at Toronto FC, 4 p.m. (MLS Direct Kick)

15. NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION (3-5-4, 13 points), Last week: 14

Week 11: Reserve side pummeled, 5-0, at Sporting Kansas City in a U.S. Open Cup qualifying final, not enough offense in 1-0 loss to Galaxy

Remark: Shalrie Joseph's decision to skip the Gold Cup makes a statement: “I'm the captain,” he tells league's website. “Guys look up to me. They need me to be to there in a time we’re in desperate need. I couldn’t afford to leave them and walk away.”

Off to the Gold Cup: Nobody, it turns out. Joseph backed out of Grenada's roster, and Benny Feilhaber's ankle injury will force him off the U.S. team, although no official decision has been made

Next: Saturday at FC Dallas, 5:30 p.m. (MLS Direct Kick)

16. CHICAGO FIRE (1-4-6, 9 points), Last week: 17

Week 11: Woodland Hills' Orr Barouch ignites second-half rally as Fire push past San Jose on penalties in U.S. Open Cup qualifying final; Dominic Oduro and Cory Gibbs score equalizers in 2-2 draw with Quakes in league play

Remark: Mexican coach Carlos de los Cobos' dismissal no surprise, and neither is technical director Frank Klopas taking charge, even if he doesn't want the job

Off to the Gold Cup: Star midfielder Marco Pappa is with Guatemala

Next: Saturday vs. Seattle, 5:30 p.m. (MLS Direct Kick)

17. VANCOUVER WHITECAPS (1-5-6, 9 points), Last week: 18

Week 11: Eric Hassli's would-be winner wiped away by torrential storm that halts second leg of Canadian Championship final at Toronto FC, and his penalty kick stands up for 1-1 draw with New York

Remark: Seems the 'Caps pulled the trigger way too early in dismissing Icelandic coach Teitur Thordarson

Off to the Gold Cup: Midfielder Terry Dunfield is with Canada

Next: Wednesday vs. Chivas USA at Home Depot Center (Carson), 7:30 p.m. (Fox Sports West); Saturday at Real Salt Lake, 6 p.m. (MLS Direct Kick)

18. TORONTO FC (2-5-6, 12 points), Last week: 16

Week 11: Maicon Santos scores twice in 6-2 embarrassment at home against Philadelphia

Remark: Is Aron Winter next to go? Not a good idea -- Reds need to be thinking long-term

Off to the Gold Cup: Midfielder Julian de Guzman (Canada) and defender Dicoy Williams (Jamaica)

Next: Saturday vs. Sporting Kansas City, 4 p.m. (MLS Direct Kick)

All times Pacific