PST’s Major League Soccer power rankings: More movement, just not No.1

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Some course correction is in place for our second week in new hands, as teams from each conference may’ve taken umbrage at their PST MLS PR drops last week.

So many acronyms!

Any way, Los Angeles continues to look nearly unbeatable, as Jaime Penedo’s goalkeeping has raised its game to meet Robbie Keane and company’s electric attack. Bruce Arena’s move of Robbie Rogers to outside back has essentially demanded to coach of the year award (though Oscar Pareja and Gregg Berhalter deserve a say as well).

Philadelphia, New York and Portland all failed big tests — in our eyes — while New England passed one with flying comeback colors. And what about Toronto?

[ MORE: Last week’s rankings | Methodology ]

Here’s where we are:

RANKING Up/Down
source:  1 LA Galaxy: Can they somehow go higher? Can we place a spot above No. 1? The Galaxy are playing attractive soccer against some of the league’s better teams, and it’s hard to find enough plaudits to divide between Robbie Keane, Landon Donovan, Gyasi Zardes and Jaime Penedo. Los Angeles looks like a team of destiny, and the playoffs are coming. (16-5-9)
source:  2 UP 4 DC United: It’s a big jump one week after a decent drop in the rankings, but bear with us: DC had given us plenty to doubt after their 3-3 draw with Chicago, only to immediately remind us how well they can defend. Chris Korb’s return is an asset that cannot be denied, and DC rises back to a spot it deserves.  (15-9-6)
3 DOWN 1 Real Salt Lake: You could make the argument that RSL deserves to stay in spot No. 2, and honestly this is one that had us bouncing back-and-forth. Two losses from three matches is no befitting a No. 2 squadron, though, especially considering Vancouver had been struggling. (13-7-10)
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4 UP 1 Seattle Sounders: Up a spot thanks to getting off the schneid against Chivas USA, but we cannot boost them higher until we feel better about their defending. It’s a big concern for the Sounders. (18-8-3)
source:  5 UP 4 New England Revolution: Count us among the believers, especially now that Jermaine Jones and company greeted their first loss in a while with a win. After coughing up a 2-0 lead, ghosts could’ve come out to haunt them. They didn’t, and the Revs deserve loads of credit. (14-13-3)
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6 DOWN 2 New York Red Bulls: Well, that 4-0 beat down by Los Angeles certainly wasn’t pretty, but we’ll give a bit of a reprieve to the Red Bulls considering they were denied well by Jaime Penedo and uncharacteristic Bradley Wright-Phillips errors en route to their second-half collapse. Still winners of three of five without a weak W in there. (10-9-11)
source:  7 UP 1 Columbus Crew: We owe Gregg Berhalter an apology. Given his pedigree, the job he’s done in Ohio shouldn’t be a surprise, and the defeat of Montreal shows he learns quickly from his errors. (11-9-10)
source:  8 UP 2 FC Dallas: With only a loss to L.A. among his three last matches, Oscar Pareja is doing work in Dallas. Look out for some big upcoming matches that could assert Dallas as a title contender. (14-10-6)
source:  9 DOWN 6 Philadelphia Union: The Union faced a show-me something match against DC, and failed. If you think six spots is too dramatic a fall, you’re right: We had them too high. Sure, DC had some touchline clearances, but Bill Hamid put some opportunities out there to no avail. Conor Casey in particular seemed to fight the physical DC D and lose. (9-10-11)
source:  10 DOWN 3 Portland Timbers: Caleb Porter and company also faced a chance to reassert themselves. They looked on their way before coughing up a 2-0 lead to Toronto FC that sent them out of the Top Five. Must make most of back-to-back games with San Jose. The Will Johnson injury stings(9-9-12)
source:  11 UP 1 Houston Dynamo: Remember these guys? Now unbeaten through five matches, the Dynamo have a chance to be a playoff threat by winning their match in-hand. It won’t be easy – four of their remaining five matches is against a playoff foe – but it’s a lesson to almost never rule out Houston. (10-13-6)
source:  12 UP 5 Toronto FC: That’s two in-a-row for TFC, and the character shown in their come-from-behind win over Portland should serve notice that a team with leaders like Michael Bradley and Jermain Defoe should not be overlooked. Hold a match-in-hand but L.A. is next. And L.A. is really good. (11-11-7)
source:  13 UP 1 Vancouver Whitecaps: This weekend’s win over Real Salt Lake was much-needed for Carl Robinson’s bunch, and a reminder that the Caps are capable of some great things. If they can navigate Dallas and Seattle, they’ll finish with a decent run-in to a playoff spot with matches against Colorado and San Jose to close the season. (9-8-13)
source:  14 DOWN 3 Sporting KC: What the heck is going on here? Matt Besler continues to make uncharacteristic errors, and Sporting’s only win since Aug. 16 is against Chivas USA. There are major concerns in title town, and we’re not sure they aren’t warranted. (13-11-6)
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15 DOWN 2 Montréal Impact: The loss to Columbus should serve as an unnecessary reminder to Montreal fans that it’s all about the CONCACAF Champions League. League form is about staying fit for their continental fight. (6-18-6)
source:  16 DOWN 1 Chicago Fire: It’s effectively over for Chicago after its loss to Houston. Imagine if one or two of those ties were wins.
(5-8-16)
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17 DOWN 1 San Jose Earthquakes: Drawing Colorado is not an accomplishment right now. Change is in the San Jose air, and it’s coming sooner rather than later (6-12-11)
source:  18 Colorado Rapids: Still haven’t won since July 25 after this week’s tie against San Jose. Chivas USA on October 11 might be their last chance to expect a win (8-14-8)
source:  19 Chivas USA: One point since July 12? We’ll raise you no team for two years(6-18-6)