Man, nothing makes me appreciate Major League Soccer more than the start of the new NFL season. MLS has its problems— many, many, many, many, many problems— but I’ll take this shit over the NFL any day of the week. Fuck Roger Goodell, fuck traumatic brain injuries, and fuck any organization that flips out over anthem protests while letting domestic abusers get away with fucking murder.
Anyway, here’s the weekend in MLS.
Toronto FC 4-0 San Jose Quakes
So Toronto beat the shit out of SJ. The particulars aren’t important— Jozy bagged two, if that’s any indication of how much of a fucking stroll this was for TFC— but the big thing is what it means for the rest of us. The win clinched a playoff spot for Toronto, and with their nice little cushion over NYCFC and the Fire they’re almost certainly winning the Conference and likely the Supporters’ Shield as well.
You probably knew that part already because Toronto fans won’t fucking shut up about it.
You know what, guys? Y’all elected Rob Ford as your mayor. A little humility on your parts wouldn’t be the worse thing, is all I’m saying.
(Also I <3 you Diego Valeri.)
DC United 1-2 Orlando City
This might be my favorite MLS game— the kind where neither team comes out looking good.
Orlando— a playoff contender as recently as July before eating shit for much of the summer and sinking to close to the bottom of the East— hadn’t won a game in the league since June 30th. No, seriously. All the hype around Orlando this season and it was completely undeserved. The good news for them this weekend was that they finally broke that streak and actually managed to win a game. Again, it’s the first win since before the Gold Cup break.
But they had to get that win against DC United. A team who, if they manage to somehow not finish with the worst record in the league, it’ll be a goddamn miracle. So, good for you, Orlando, you beat the Wooden Spoon favorites to get your first win in over two months. You must be so fucking proud.
Alright FINE I’ll admit it. The new stadium looks pretty dope now that it’s done and there’s actual soccer being played in it.
Also, yeah, I’ll admit that Atlanta look really fucking scary when they’re on a roll. I mean, yes, Dallas has shit the bed in recent weeks, but even at their strongest they wouldn’t have been able to hold this Atlanta team back. They’re good. Scary good. I really don’t want to face them in the playoffs.
I mean look, if you’re not getting at least some schadenfreude out of watching MLS games that don’t involve the Fire, what are you even doing with your life?
Sounders vs Galaxy is one of those fixtures where the ideal result is “both teams get catapulted into the sun.” You never want to say you’re cheering for LA, but they’ve been so shambolic this season that they’re basically already out of the playoff chase. (Which, lol.) This gave them a golden opportunity to play spoiler against a Sounders team that’s in the mix to win the Western Conference.
And they almost did! Gyassi Zardes (lol) got a goal midway through the first half and then shut Seattle’s shit down. It was hiiiiilarious.
And then fucking Lamar Neagle just... ugh, fuck this.
But the BEST part was Jermaine Jones did his best Elderly Man In A Bathtub impression and went down hard on the edge of the box late in the game, winning a free kick and getting Román Torres sent off. It was total bullshit and I couldn’t stop laughing.
(Seriously though, we should get to work on that catapult.)