PORTLAND, OR - JULY 14: Kris Boyd #9 of the Portland Timbers celebrates a goal against the Los Angeles Galaxy on July 14, 2012 at Jeld-Wen Field in Portland, Oregon. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)
The newest MLS power rankings have the Quakes still on top.
Clear divides are starting to emerge in the SB Nation power rankings as the voters have clearly divided the team into tiers, whether they realize it or not. The Earthquakes continue to remain supreme, while RSL, Sporting and the Red Bulls make up the next tier, far ahead of a third tier trio.
So what can we take from this? How about that one team is a clear MLS Cup favorite, three more are nipping right on their heels and the next three look like good bets for the playoffs. The rest, get ready to battle for one of the three remaining playoff spots, except for the Timbers. You are the worst and should be relegated.
1. San Jose Earthquakes (Average ranking: 1.11; Last week's average: 1.00): Maybe falling behind and banking on a miraculous comeback isn't the best strategy. Of course, they don't do that every week, it just feels like it and when they tried it against the Whitecaps on Sunday it didn't pan out, but they still sit atop the league.
2. New York Red Bulls (3.11; 5.50): How are you supposed to keep tabs on Thierry Henry and Kenny Cooper when Sebastien Le Toux is cutting in? It's not like there is a Joel Lindpere or a revelatory Connor Lade to keep tabs on either. Oh, and this new Tim Cahill fellow. Look out.
3. Real Salt Lake (3.33; 5.08): Playing the Rapids is a great way to rebound from getting smacked around by the Quakes.
4. Sporting Kansas City (3.44; 2.17): This week was a complete bust for Sporting. They lost and then drew at home against a Revs team that only knows how to lose away. A visit from Columbus this week should fix that.
5. Vancouver Whitecaps (6.33; 8.33): They can ship out their entire team (almost, but not really) and still continue to win matches. Isn't there some kind of rule against that?
6. Houston Dynamo (6.44; 7.67): The Dynamo are unbeaten in their last six and didn't look like they missed Geoff Cameron at all last week. They also played the Impact so put limited stock in that second part.
7. D.C. United (6.56; 4.33): Three losses in their last four matches is less than good. They should try that defending thing.
8. Seattle Sounders (7.00; 5.25): It's safe to say that the voters have run out of slack for the Sounders. It's probably a few weeks too late.
9. LA Galaxy (8.67; 8.92): Goals aplenty, but where's the defense? Omar Gonzalez's return can't come soon enough, but that they are semi-comfortably in a playoff spot without him (he's played, but barely) is pretty special.
10. Chicago Fire (10.00; 7.83): The Fire on a super duper roller coaster. It's been up and down all year and right now it is down.
11. Columbus Crew (11.44; 13.50): They are a bad team that gets just enough points to make you mildly respect them. See last week's win as proof.
12. New England Revolution (12.00; 10.83): The Kansas City BBQ must have steroids in it because the Revs never get points away from Gillette Stadium and yet they managed to draw Sporting. Test them all. (Side note: mmmmm BBQ)
13. Chivas USA (13.44; 15.00): All we are saying, is score us a goaaaaaaal. Seriously, score a goal or 19.
14. Montreal Impact (14.89; 15.25): Tumblin', tumblin' down. They keep losing, but somehow moved up the rankings because ...
15. Colorado Rapids (15.44; 12.07): We've given up on you. Probably because you suck.
16. Philadelphia Union (15.56; 14.17): The Union may have lost, but John Hackworth is still the Coach of the Half-Year. Even in defeat they looked like a real team.
18. FC Dallas (16.22, 17.75): It's amazing how getting off of the 13-match winless schneid can turn a team around. Well, that and playing the Timbers.
19. Portland Timbers (19.00; 18.00): Go away. Nobody wants you.
Who participated: Jeremiah Oshan (SB Nation, soccer); Aaron Campeau (SB Nation, soccer); Ryan Rosenblatt (SB Nation, soccer); Drew Epperley (SB Nation, soccer); Jason Anderson (SB Nation, soccer); Phillip Quin (SB Nation, soccer); Martin Shatzer (Black and Red United); Scott Kessler (Brotherly Game); Denzel Eslinger (RSL Soapbox); Robert Jonas (Quake, Rattle and Goal); Daniel Robertson (Big D Soccer); Dave Clark and Josh Yockey (Sounder at Heart); Duncan Fletcher (Waking the Red), Steve Stoehr (The Bent Musket); Ben Schneider (Once a Metro); Alicia Ratterree (The Goat Parade); Brenton Walters (The Vancouver Whitecaps Offside); Geoff Gibson (Stumptown Footy); Sofiane Benzaza (Mount Royal Soccer); Alex Englen (The Daily Wiz); Rudy Gomez and Ryan Sealock (Hot Time In Old Town).