DC United trounced Atlanta, NYCFC won on the road, Toronto is on a roll, and LA continues to wallow in mediocrity. Here’s what you might’ve missed around the league this weekend.
Toronto 2–0 Houston
Toronto jumped on Houston in the Friday night match. Jozy Altidore finished off a nice team move after Toronto completed several consecutive passes. Raheem Edwards assisted the goal with a really nice cut back pass through the penalty area. Edwards made just his 4th start for TFC as a rookie and is a player to keep an eye on as he progresses this year. Altidore scored again in the first half after a lovely give and go with Sebastian Giovinco. Houston did create some chances it has to be said but Toronto was just extremely dangerous with the Giovinco-Altidore combination up front. It was business as usual for TFC with Edwards and Steven Beitashour screaming up the flanks they overwhelmed Houston.
Montreal 1-2 Vancouver
The Impact came up empty at home against fellow Canadian club Vancouver. Montreal scored early on from a long-range effort from Marco Donadel, which took a deflection on its way into the net. Montreal, perhaps not used to have such an early lead this year sat back after the goal and gave possession to Vancouver. It was much to their detriment and Vancouver wound up snatching all three points on the road. Pressure is going to start building on a Montreal team that was in the conference finals of MLS Cup Playoffs last season. It has been a really slow start and they really needed the three points this week. They have little to no balance right now and pose very little threat going forward.
Orlando 2-0 Colorado
Orlando absolutely dominated Colorado throughout their match but had to wait until the 70th minute before they took the lead. Carlos Rivas scored a screamer from long range to give the lions a one-goal lead. After a couple of poor seasons Rivas seems to be coming around. It was only a matter of time before Orlando found the net and they thoroughly deserved the three points.
Columbus 2–3 NYCFC
Jack Harrison opened and finished the scoring in a 5-goal thriller over in Columbus. The second of Harrison’s brace late in the second half helped NYC to a big three road points. It was a really fun game to watch as a neutral. Both of these teams are top heavy with attacking talent and even without David Villa NYC were able to create many chances. Jack Harrison is really emerging as a quality player. He now has four goals this year and his first in this game was a sublime little chip to get it over the Columbus keeper. Columbus will continue to score goals with their attacking talent but you have to question their defense. Conceding three goals at home isn’t going to win you many matches.
Seattle 3–3 New England
This game was crazy. Seattle finished the game with well over 20 shots and nearly 75% possession. Yes over 20 shots. The Revolution’s first goal was a bit of a fluke however they somehow went on to score two more goals. With a three-goal cushion you would think they could have held on but Seattle had other ideas and stormed back late in the second half to tie the game up. The Sounders could have scored 7 or 8 goals in this game and hit the woodwork several times. Being up three goals I am sure the Revolution will be kicking them selves for not closing the game out but a point in Seattle is ultimately a solid result.
LA Galaxy 0–0 Philadelphia
Philadelphia picked up a valuable road point against the Galaxy. Philadelphia however remains rooted to the bottom of the Eastern Conference table, still looking for their first win. LA had the majority of possession and chances but couldn’t find the back of the net. Philadelphia will need to start picking up points quickly if they have any plans to get in the top 6 before it is too late.
Atlanta 1–3 DC United
The most surprising result of the weekend came in the last game. Atlanta were surely favored to pick up three points at home against DC. This was the most disjointed I have seen Atlanta look thus far but they were better than the score line suggested. Atlanta dominated possession and had some really clear-cut chances that they did not bury. Bill Hamid was excellent in the DC goal and made some fantastic saves.
Hot (Time) Take
Goals, goals and more goals. It was a good weekend to watch some games as a neutral. Many of the games were shoot-outs with many goals being scored. In previous weeks I have mentioned how hard it is to win on the road in MLS. There are a number of reasons you could point to on why that is however this week that did not seem to be the case. While the Fire lost out on the east coast, Vancouver, NYCFC, San Jose and DC all picked up road wins. New England, Portland and Philadelphia also picked up points away from home drawing in their games. While it is very interesting I do not expect that trend to continue. Nonetheless it wasn’t a great weekend for the Fire. While the Men In Red failed to get any points for the second straight week several of our rivals in the East managed to pick up points where I did not expect them to.