Please enjoy a slightly late and abbreviated Monday Morning Sweeper………
Chivas rules SuperClasico
The “SuperClasico” has never been a real rivalry, but more of a grudge match where the “younger brother” constantly falls to the older, more successful brother on their shared home field. Home Depot Center feels more like the House that Beckham Built even when the Goats are hosting an opponent. So it must have been a wonderful sense of relief for Robin Fraser’s men on Saturday with their 1-0 victory over the Galaxy.
After last year’s so-so campaign Chivas USA has taken it upon itself to rebuild its style and team, with this week’s double trades the most obvious example. Both new players – veteran Danny Califf and youngster Juan Agudelo – contributed in this match. It was one of the players the Goats discarded, however, that may have had the biggest impact. It was David Junior Lopes who stuck out his arm to deny Jose Correa’s open goal that led to the game’s one and only goal.
To be fair, the Galaxy almost escaped the situation after Correa’s penalty was saved by LA keeper Brian Perk but encroachment was called and the penalty retaken. That said, LA now is off to the worst start for a defending MLS champion ever with eleven points in eleven matches. Bruce Arena tried to mix things up with Beckham and Buddle on the bench, but the team’s flaws still shined through. The loss to Chivas was just another milestone in an incredibly disappointing season to this point.
Player of the Week
Andy Gruenebaum made seven saves against high-scoring San Jose and was minutes away from a huge shut out on Saturday. It was saves like this one that earned Gruenebaum the player of the week nod:
Honorable Mention Player of the Week
Fantasy MLS players at this point should know to start Dwayne De Rosario when he plays a former team. For some reasons, his game goes to a higher level when playing a former club, and Saturday was no different. The former Toronto FC star scored twice and dominated the midfield in DC’s 3-1 win over hapless Toronto.
Quote of the Week Part 1
“They are a good team but, really, players on this team [Seattle], they think they are better than everybody and, personally, I think they have a couple of good guys, but nothing special.”
Vancouver’s Davide Chiumiento on the Sounders after their 2-2 draw on Saturday, courtesy of The Province
Quote of Week Part 2
“They were going down pretty easy. They were just diving around. They got a couple of calls, but I think the ref realized what they were doing.”
Lovel Palmer on the Chicago Fire slowing down the game in the 2-1 Portland win on Sunday, courtesy of OregonLive
Video of the Week
Luiz Camargo equalizes the score in the Dynamo’s 2-2 draw with the Revolution
MMS Non-Scientific Power Rankings
10. Chicago Fire: Winning at a very fallible Portland is a missed opportunity to make a statement in the East
9. Chivas USA: As soon as the Goats can see the promise of a liberated Juan Agudelo, he gets called up to the national team. Nevertheless, this is a team on the rise.
8. Colorado Rapids: When you haven’t quite decided how to use Conor Casey most effectively and who to pair him with, you know you are still a work in progress.
7. Vancouver Whitecaps: They have the swagger, the talent, and are getting the results. Midweek blips like their draw against Toronto remind us however that they aren’t quite there yet.
6. Sporting Kansas City: Winless in their last four, Sporting KC seems to be making the mental errors that they didn’t during their win streak. At least that seems fixable.
5. DC United: The most impressive thing about DC’s current run of form? They are deep into their second string on defense and are still defending just well enough to get results.
4. Seattle Sounders: It must be frustrating to be Seattle, who has allowed the fewest goals this season and is tied for the fewest losses but still trails RSL and San Jose in the standings. It’s early though and they have games in hand.
3. San Jose Earthquakes: Their next four games are all on the road, and all are critical games – LA, Sporting Kansas City, Colorado, and Real Salt Lake. Survive that and this is a Supporters Shield contender.
2. New York Red Bulls: Five straight wins and another solid win means the East’s first place team is looking to unseat RSL at the top of these standings.
1. Real Salt Lake: The team with the week off remains in first.