The 2013 Major League Soccer season has finally concluded, and the New York Red Bulls top the penultimate MLS Power Rankings here on the View from Avalon. Sporting Kansas City and the Portland Timbers give chase, while the Los Angeles Galaxy move down after a couple of disappointing showings on the week.
Movers, shakers and a whole lot more. That’s the MLS Power Rankings on the View from Avalon and it starts…now.
1. New York Red Bulls
This week, Mike Petke’s New York Red Bulls remain at the top after a big 5-2 victory over the Chicago Fire at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, N.J. With the win, the Curse of Caricola is officially broken.
Thierry Henry (24′), Ibrahim Sekagya (49′), Lloyd Sam (56′), Eric Alexander (77′), and Jonny Steele (84′) scored for the Red Bulls, who will face either the Houston Dynamo or Montreal Impact in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. New York finish the regular season 17-9-8 (59 points).
2. Sporting Kansas City
After a goalless draw with Olimpia in CONCACAF Champions League play at Sporting Park in Kansas City, Kan., Peter Vermes’s Sporting Kansas City defeated the Philadelphia Union, 2-1, at PPL Park in Chester, Pa. Graham Zusi (47′) and Lawrence Olum (90′ + 2′) scored for Sporting, who end the regular season at 17-10-7 (58 points) and will take on the New England Revolution in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.
3. Portland Timbers
Caleb Porter’s Portland Timbers are tops in the MLS Western Conference after a comfortable 5-0 victory over Chivas USA at the StubHub Center in Carson, Calif. Diego Valeri led the way with a brace in the 16th and 29th minute of play. Other goalscorers included Rodney Wallace (34′), Ryan Johnson (72′) and Will Johnson (76′).
Portland end the 2013 regular season with a record of 14-5-15 (57 points) and will face either the Seattle Sounders or Colorado Rapids in the Western Conference Semifinals.
4. New England Revolution
A 28th-minute goal from Juan Agudelo gave Jay Heaps’s New England Revolution a 1-0 victory over the Columbus Crew at Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio. The Revs finish 2013 with a 14-11-9 record and will take on Sporting Kansas City in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.
5. Real Salt Lake
Jason Kreis’s Real Salt Lake were on cruise control when they defeatedd Chivas USA at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, Utah, 2-1. Alvaro Saborio (49′) and Joao Plata (52′) scored for RSL, who conclude their 2013 regular season with a 16-10-8 record (56 points) and will take on the Los Angeles Galaxy in the MLS Western Conference Semifinals.
6. Los Angeles Galaxy
After the Reserves were crushed by Nicolas Munoz and Isidro Metapan 4-0 in CONCACAF Champions League play at the Estadio Cuscatlan in San Salvador, El Salvador, Bruce Arena’s Los Angeles Galaxy bounced back with a 1-1 draw against the Seattle Sounders at CenturyLink Field in Seattle, Wash.
Robbie Keane was the hero in the 78th minute for the Galaxy, who end the regular season with a record of 15-11-8 (53 points) and will clash with Real Salt Lake in the Western Conference Semifinals.
7. Houston Dynamo
After getting shut out 1-0 by Arabe Unido in CONCACAF Champions League play at the Estadio Agustin Sanchez in La Chorrera, Panama, Dominic Kinnear’s Houston Dynamo punched their ticket with a 2-1 victory over D.C. United at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C.
Oscar Boniek Garcia (11′) and Giles Barnes (39′) scored for the Dynamo, who finish the regular season with a 14-11-9 record (51 points) and will host the Montreal Impact in the play-in game on Oct. 31 at BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston, Tex.
8. Colorado Rapids
Oscar Pareja’s Colorado Rapids are stumbling into the MLS Cup Playoffs like a bunch of intoxicated rogues seduced by locally-grown cannabis. Their 3-0 defeat to the Vancouver Whitecaps at B.C. Place Stadium told the story at the Rapids fell to 14-11-9 (51 points), advancing to the MLS Cup Playoffs on the second tiebreaker, goals forwarded.
Colorado travel to CenturyLink Field to take on the Seattle Sounders on Oct. 30. Kickoff is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. MT/10:30 p.m. ET and will be televised by Altitude.
9. San Jose Earthquakes
Mark Watson’s San Jose Earthquakes handed the Supporters’ Shield over to the New York Red Bull with their dignity intact, defeating FC Dallas 2-1 at Buck Shaw Stadium on the campus of Santa Clara University in Santa Clara, Calif. Walter Martinez (27′) and Chris Wondolowski (57′) scored for Dallas, who end 2013 with a record of 14-11-9 (51 points), only losing out on the playoffs by goals forwarded.
10. Vancouver Whitecaps
Martin Rennie’s Vancouver Whitecaps ended their 2013 season with a bang in the form of a 3-0 shutout win over the Colorado Rapids at B.C. Place Stadium in Vancouver, B.C. Camilo Sanvezzo scored a hat trick in the 43rd, 74th and 84th minutes of play. The Caps finish the year with a 13-12-9 record (48 points) and a Cascadia Cup.
11. Montreal Impact
Despite getting shut out 1-0 by Toronto FC at BMO Field in Toronto, Ont., Marco Schallibaum’s Montreal Impact back their way into the playoffs on the grounds of superior goals forwarded. L’Impact are back in action on Oct. 31 against the Houston Dynamo at BBVA Compass Stadium.
12. Seattle Sounders
Clint Dempsey finally opened his scoring account in the 30th minute but Sigi Schmid’s Seattle Sounders were held to a 1-1 draw with the Los Angeles Galaxy at CenturyLink Field. The Sounders open their MLS Cup Playoff run on Oct. 30 at home against the Colorado Rapids. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. PT/10:30 p.m. ET and will be televised by KONG 6/16.
13. Toronto FC
Despite a very rough year full of tumult and turnover, Ryan Nelsen’s Toronto FC ended 2013 with a 1-0 victory over the Montreal Impact at BMO Field. Robert Earnshaw scored in the 16th minute for Toronto, who end their 2013 season with a record of 6-17-11 (29 points)
14. Chicago Fire
Frank Klopas’s Chicago Fire fell short at the very last hurdle. Despite goals from Mike Magee (6′) and Quincy Amarikwa (90′), the Fire fell to the New York Red Bulls 5-2 at Red Bulls Arena and were eliminated from the playoffs by way of the second tiebreaker, goals forwarded. Chicago finish 2013 with a record of 14-13-7 (29 points).
15. Columbus Crew
Robert Warzycha’s Columbus Crew ended their season in ignominous fashion, falling 1-0 to the New England Revolution at Crew Stadium. With the defeat, Columbus finish the year with a 12-17-5 record (41 points).
16. FC Dallas
Stephen Keel scored in the 90th minute for Schellas Hyndman’s FC Dallas against the San Jose Earthquakes, but it was too little, too late as they fell 2-1 at Buck Shaw Stadium. The Schellas Hyndman era at FC Dallas ends with a 2013 record of 11-12-11 (44 points).
17. Philadelphia Union
There will be no playoffs for John Hackworth’s Philadelphia Union after they fell to Sporting Kansas City, 2-1, at PPL Park. Jack McInerney scored the final goal of the year for the Union, who end their campaign with a record of 12-12-10 (46 points).
18. D.C. United
Ben Olsen’s D.C. United concluded a difficult 2013 season with a 2-1 defeat to the Houston Dynamo at RFK Stadium. Kyle Porter scored in the 27th minute for D.C., who end 2013 with a record of 3-24-7 (16 points)…and a U.S. Open Cup.
19. Chivas USA
Jose Luis Real’s Chivas USA ended their season with a couple of defeats. On Wednesday, they fell to Real Salt Lake 2-1 at Rio Tinto Stadium, with Julio Morales scoring in the 77th minute of play. That would be the last goal Chivas USA would score, as they were flattened by the Portland Timbers, 5-0, on Saturday at the StubHub Center. Chivas end their sorry season with a 6-20-8 record (26 points.)