Columbus Crew 2, NYCFC 2
It was Kei Kamara (who else) who kicked of the scoring in this Wednesday night contest. In the 24th minute, his teammate Ethan Finley drove the ball up the right flank and then whipped in a tight cross that Kamara tapped in with his outstretched boot. That line would stand until the 57th, when David Villa threaded a perfect through ball to Kwadwo Poku, who easily flicked it past the keeper. Poku wasn't done yet, ten minutes later, Andrea Pirlo rainbowed in a corner that Andrew Jacobson redirected toward the Ghanaian, who banged it in for the lead. NYCFC's dreams of 3 points were dashed in the 72nd, when Kei Kamara played it through to Cedrick, who buried it in the far post past the onrushing keeper.
Until Wednesday night, SKC hadn't lost at Sporting Park all season, but when they finally did, they lost badly. The Earthquakes, who had only won one of their last 6, poured on the goals in this match. Cordell Cato only needed 3 minutes to get the first of his brace, with the second coming in the 58th minute, and both of them coming from a Shea Salinas assist. Chris Wondolowski notched his first of a pair at 17', with a converted PK conceded by Chance Myers. The second for Wondo was in the 61st, a long lob that bounced off his head into the net. Anibal Godoy's 5th goal in this massacre was his first of the season. In the 27th minute he broke on the goal, one on one with the keeper, and fooled him with a cut-back before striking it right down the middle.
The Dynamo had another disappointing result on the road Friday night, blowing a 2 goal lead and limping out of Portland with only a draw. Just before halftime, Boniek Garcia and Will Bruin both scored to give Houston a commanding 2-0 lead. For most of the second half Houston kept that sheet clean, until the 76th, when Darlington Nagbe buried a ball to pull it within 1. Portland broke Dynamo fans' hearts in the 86th with an equalizer, a blow that the boys in orange were unable to overcome.
Another week, another blowout for the Lions. Toronto divided up the scoring for the first three goals; one each for Marco Delgado, Justin Morrow, and MVP candidate Sebastien Giovinco, with a pair of assists for the captain Michael Bradley. USMNT striker Jozy Altidore got back to his goal-scoring ways in this tilt. In the 83rd, he fooled the keeper right down the middle on a PK conceded by Adrian Winter, and 2 minutes later he headed in a rebounded Michael Bradley free kick.
San Jose Earthquakes 2, DC United 0
San Jose continued their deliberate march up the Western Conference Standings Saturday with a road win over DC United. Chris Wondolowski opened the score 4 minutes into the match, and his teammate Shea Salinas added an exclamation point 7 minutes after halftime. After struggling mightily for a time, San Jose has now won 3 straight, and is poised on the edge of the playoffs.
Columbus Crew 3, Sporting Kansas City 2
The Crew handed SKC their second loss of the week, but this one came right down to the wire. Sporting actually led for a lot of this game, with go-ahead goals by Marcel de Jong and Graham Zusi in the 14th and 62nd. The Crew had an equalizer in the 34th by Ethan Finley, but it was in the 80th minute when they really broke the game open. Tony Tchani pounced on a lofted free kick and snuck it under the crossbar to pull the game even, and 8 minutes later, Federico Higuain's driving shot was deflected away by the keeper, but deflected into open space in front of goal, and Jack McInerney was waiting to poach it, and an easy tap in stole the game for the Crew.
The Union finally bought themselves a win Saturday after going winless in their last 5. Didier Drogba, making his MLS debut for Montreal, was unable to make a big impact for the Impact, and Sebastien Le Toux's goal in the 78th minute was enough to secure the W for Philadelphia. Although they are still in second to last place, the Union are now only 1 point below the red line in the pitifully weak Eastern Conference.
Dillon Serna had the Rapids on pace for 90 goals when he scored in the first minute, but his goal would end up being the only one in this battle between the two worst teams in MLS. Colorado's win broke a 3 -game losing streak and the Fire now have played more games (24), than they have points (23). Other than that there's just not much to say about this game, both of these teams are terrible.
One finish was all that Vancouver needed to take three points out of this match, and it came 32 minutes into the games. Kekuta Manneh drove the ball diagonally across towards the far right post, then flicked it back inside and Christian Techera, as he was falling down, put a deft little back heel finish on the ball to sneak it past the keeper. FC Dallas, who looked like world-beaters not that long ago, have now lost 3 straight and have slid from 1st all the way to 5th place in the Western Conference.
RSL grabbed 3 desperately needed points in the late game Sunday, and Seattle continued to do Seattle things. A handball in the 12th gave Javier Morales a chance to take a PK, and his stutter-step went right past the keeper into the back of the net. Just seven minutes later, a long range bomb ricocheted off of the top right corner of the goal, but Sebastien Jaime was waiting for the rebounded ball, and directed it into the unprotected goal with the top of his head. Seattle, who looked last week like they might be ready to rebound, has now lost 6 of their last 7 tilts. Not winless in 6 out of their last 7, lost 6 out of their last 7.
LA Galaxy 5, NYCFC 1
NYCFC continued to struggle Sunday afternoon, and only their DP David Villa was able to get on the board, and even then only by converting a PK conceded by LA in garbage time. The Galaxy, on the other hand, had no problem getting on the board. Robbie Keane added another 2 goals to his total of 15 this season, with one in the 54th and one in the 81st. Keane also assisted on goals by Giovani dos Santos in the 61st and Gyasi Zardes in the 36th. Zardes had an assist as well on Sebastien Ledget's 7th of the season.
What all of this means for the Dynamo
San Jose really made a mess of things this week. If they had just gotten three points, that would have been manageable. But they just had to go and win both of their contests, and making up an entire 6 points in the standings, which pulled them ahead of Houston, 35 points to 32.
The Portland game doesn't so much hurt Houston by adding another point to their total, but it kills the Dynamo based on those two points that they lost by not holding on to that 2 goal lead. If they had just held that lead, the Dynamo would only be 1 point behind the Quakes.
It's always nice to see Sporting lose, especially twice in one week, but they were so far ahead of the Dynamo that it doesn't really help any that they got 0 points out of two matches. The same is true for FC Dallas even though they've slid 4 spots recently, they're still too far ahead for Houston to really benefit.
The RSL/ Seattle result is a bit of a wash for the Dynamo. It helps that Seattle was denied any points, because right now they're only ahead of San Jose based on goal differential. However, those three points also tied RSL with Houston at 32 points, with the Dynamo ahead of them only on GD.