MLS Snapshot

AP Photo/John Raoux

MLS Snapshot: NYCFC add to Galaxy’s misery, win 2-0 in LA

Leave a comment

The game in 100 words (or less): At the risk of making the same mistake two seasons in a row (writing the Seattle Sounders off in early August), it’s time to forget about the LA Galaxy making the playoffs in 2017. Saturday’s 2-0 defeat at the hands of New York City FC was their seventh in eight games. Sigi Schmid inherited an absolute mess of a squad, which currently sits nine points out of the sixth and final playoff place in the Western Conference. Rookie Jonathan Lewis scored the game’s opening goal, his first in MLS, and David Villa added the insurance 15 minutes before full-time, his league-leading 18th of the season. NYCFC leapfrogged the Chicago Fire, who lost on Saturday, for second place in the Eastern Conference and remain four points back of Toronto FC in the race for the Supporters’ Shield (and home-field advantage in the playoffs).

[ MORE: Assessing the top moves of the MLS summer transfer ]

Three moments that mattered

40′ — Johnson makes a reaction save to deny Pele — No, you didn’t read that wrong. (Pele van Anholt, that is.)

54′ — Lewis curls a beauty past Rowe for 1-0 — It’s a wonderful strike by Lewis, but one must acknowledge Jermaine Jones’ flailing challenge which comes up painfully empty as the rookie skates past him and goes for goal.

73′ — Villa curls one past Rowe for 2-0 — We are truly fortunate to follow this league while this player continues to do his thing at this level. He’ll almost certainly become the first back-to-back MVP in MLS history.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s MLS coverageStandings | Stats | Schedule ]

Man of the match: David Villa

Goalscorers: Lewis (54′), Villa (73′)

MLS Snapshot: Shield, Cup favorites TFC torch Timbers, 4-1

Chris Young/The Canadian Press via AP
Leave a comment

The game in 100 words (or less): Very rarely is a team in MLS capable of running away from the rest of the field — it’s a league designed to create parity, after all — but this Toronto FC side looks as if they intend to smash that very ideal. Greg Vanney’s side thrashed the Portland Timbers, 4-1, on Saturday to go six points clear (for the time being) in the Supporters’ Shield race and announce themselves as favorites for MLS Cup 2017, yet again. Sebastian Giovinco tallied only an assist on the day, while Jozy Altidore and Michael Bradley neither scored nor assisted themselves, yet TFC put four (of six shots on target) into the back of the net and extended their unbeaten run to six games. Going back even further, TFC have only lost twice in their last 18 games.

[ MORE: Assessing the top moves of the MLS summer transfer ]

Three moments that mattered

58′ — Morrow beats Attinella near post for 1-0 — Alvas Powell has had… well, a rough season, to say the least. To be fair to Powell, though, he’s far from the only one struggling along that backline.

72′ — Vazquez turns home a cross for 2-0 — When TFC are on, they make it look really, really easy.

76′ — Morrow plays the poacher, makes it 3-0 — As I said about other Portland defenders struggling…

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s MLS coverageStandings | Stats | Schedule ]

Man of the match: Justin Morrow

Goalscorers: Morrow (58′, 76′), Vazquez (72′), Delgado (87′), Valeri (89′)

MLS Snapshot: Sounders top depleted SKC to go top of West

Photo credit: @MLS/Twitter
Leave a comment

The game in 100 words (or less): The Seattle Sounders are the hottest team in MLS, unbeaten in their last eight games (five wins) following Saturday’s 1-0 victory over Western Conference-leading (no longer, as the Sounders go top) Sporting Kansas City.

The only team with an unbeaten run greater than Seattle’s seven games entering Saturday’s matchup, was Sporting KC (nine games — just three wins). Clint Dempsey scored the game’s only goal, heading home a cross from a suddenly in-form Jordan Morris (one goal, one assist from his last two games) in the 36th minute. Sporting were without a number of key players from the start of the game (Benny Feilhaber, Roger Espinoza, Ilie Sanchez, Diego Rubio and Latif Blessing all started on the bench), as well as altogether (Ike Opara and Graham Zusi weren’t available at all) after playing 120 minutes and going to penalty kicks in their U.S. Open Cup semifinal victory on Wednesday.

[ MORE: Assessing the top moves of the MLS summer transfer ]

Three Two moments that mattered

36′ — Dempsey heads past Melia for 1-0 — Cristian Roldan was the best player in the middle of the field all game long, and Morris dominated the wings in a way he’s not done all that often this season. The former found the latter, who found Dempsey for the goal, his 50th in a Sounders shirt.

74′ — Musa fires low, but Frei makes the save — James Musa, making his MLS debut, got a hold of one from just outside the penalty area, but didn’t place it close enough to the bottom-right corner to beat Stefan Frei, and the big Swiss-turned-American goalkeeper made the save quite comfortably.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s MLS coverageStandings | Stats | Schedule ]

Man of the match: Jordan Morris

Goalscorers: Dempsey (36′)

MLS Snapshot: New York City FC 3-2 New York Red Bulls (video)

Twitter/@MLS
Leave a comment

The game in 100 words (or less): If goals are your thing, Sunday’s New York Derby was a must-watch. Two of the league’s most dynamic goalscorers put on a show at Yankee Stadium, but it was David Villa that had the last say as he recorded his first MLS hat-trick and helped NYCFC capture its first season-series against their bitter rival. Meanwhile, Bradley Wright-Phillips continued his scoring tear against NYCFC in the defeat with his ninth and 10th goals against the Red Bulls’ cross-river rivals. The loss for Jesse Marsch’s side snaps the team’s four-match win streak, while NYCFC creates separation in third place in the Eastern Conference with the win.

Three four moments that mattered

28′ — Villa pounces, puts NYCFC in front — Red Bulls fans will be shouting for handball on Alex Ring, but the flag stayed down and David Villa does what he does best. That’s 15 goals on the season!

41′ — BWP keeps on torturing the rivals — Just moments after Jack Harrison’s penalty appeal, the all-time leading scorer for the Red Bulls does this… 1-1 at Yankee Stadium.

64′ — Guess who? Bradley gives Red Bulls the lead — If somebody is going to score in this rivalry, it’s quite clear who that player will be. Make it 10 goals for Wright-Phillips against NYCFC.

72′ — Villa decides to take everyone on — The captain hasn’t had the best track record of scoring against the Red Bulls in the past, but the former Barcelona star put that out of his mind on Sunday.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s MLS coverageStandings | Stats | Schedule ]

Man of the match: David Villa

Goalscorers: David Villa (28′, 72′, 76′), Bradley Wright-Phillips (41′, 64′)

MLS Snapshot: Portland Timbers 3-1 LA Galaxy (video)

Twitter/@MLS
Leave a comment

The game in 100 words (or less): Sunday’s match at Providence Park had it all. A VAR decision cancelled out a goal for the visitors, while the Galaxy saw its newest signing make his debut. Unfortunately for Sigi Schmid’s men, Jonathan dos Santos’ first match didn’t result in three points against the Timbers. The Pacific Northwest side broke the deadlock just five minutes into the match, while Diego Valeri scored one of the best goals you’ll beyond the half hour mark with a blast from distance. Alvas Powell tacked on the last finish for the hosts, while Emmanuel Boateng gave the Galaxy their consolation in the first half.

Three four moments that mattered

11′ — VAR comes into play — The Galaxy thought they had taken the lead, but then VAR stepped in.

33′ — Valeri continues to defy logic — There’s just no chance Brian Rowe was going to save that… or any keeper for that matter.

55′ — Adi dazzles before Powell blasts home — Just in case there was any doubt who was winning the match, Alvas Powell put the Galaxy’s hopes to bed with this scorching strike.

64′ — The other Dos Santos makes his debut — The Galaxy’s fortunes weren’t the best on Sunday, but they did get a look at their newest signing.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s MLS coverageStandings | Stats | Schedule ]

Man of the match: Diego Valeri

Goalscorers: Liam Ridgewell (5′), Emmanuel Boateng (6′), Diego Valeri (33′), Alvas Powell (55′)