MLS Power Rankings: LAFC overtakes Inter Miami for first place

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It’s Monday and another week of MLS action is scheduled, which means it’s time to check out ESPN’s Power Rankings.

Our power rankings are derived from a combination of key season statistics (points per game, goal differential, expected goal differential), recent performances, Opta computer ratings and our editors’ observations.

Who gets on the table? Who is in free fall? We ranked the 29 clubs in the league after the 18th day. Let’s go.

Previous ranking: 2

It’s so easy to love LAFC. Steve Cherundolo’s team is tactically flexible, has a strong core of players and Denis Bouanga is one of the best strikers in the league. Bouanga was involved in all three of LAFC’s goals in their 3-1 road win over Orlando City. Life is beautiful.

Previous ranking: 1

No Lionel Messi? No Luis Suarez? Only nine men left in the final minutes of their clash against the Philadelphia Union? No problem. There is a feeling of inevitability about Inter Miami in MLS this season. Yet red cards awarded to Tomas Aviles and David Ruiz make an already thin team even thinner ahead of a midweek meeting with Columbus.

Previous ranking: 3

I have SO a lot of time for Yuya Kubo. The guy has played 27 different positions for Pat Noonan this season and has been crucial for the reigning Supporters’ Shield winners. Kubo came on in the second half for Cincy on Saturday, notched a hat trick and sealed three points.

Previous ranking: 5

Things aren’t exactly stable for the Crew – they’ve had four front office exits this season as other organizations steal them for talent, and it looks like they’re about to lose Aidan Morris to England. But on the ground? They picked up three big points at NYCFC on Friday. It will take more than a handful of outings to really take them down.

Previous ranking: 4

RSL wanted more than one point on the road in Montreal this weekend. They certainly weren’t at their best, but the fact that they could easily get a result on a long trip says a lot about just about everything you need to know about this Real Salt Lake team. year.

Previous ranking: 9

Is a home game against SKC the easiest weekend you could hope for in MLS right now? Mm-hmm. Am I still impressed that the Galaxy got past SKC with only two of their favorite starting forwards in the starting lineup? Yeah. It hasn’t been transparent, but the job has been done.

Previous ranking: 7

A red card for Mitja Ilenic changed the entire balance of NYCFC’s faceoff with the Columbus Crew to kick off the weekend. Still, this team is playing really, really good ball – and hasn’t let the train get completely off track, even while at a disadvantage against a big enemy from the East.



Cucho Hernández scores a penalty at home against NYCFC

Cucho Hernández scores a penalty at home against NYCFC

Previous ranking: 6

I talked about it with everyone and we all agreed: we should never talk about the Red Bulls’ clash with Nashville SC again after this paragraph (and the Nashville one at the bottom, I guess). Missing Lewis Morgan at the Euros and Emil Forsberg injured, RBNY were not at their best in Saturday’s 0-0 draw.

Previous ranking: 8

Speaking of absences, the Loons played without star Tani Oluwaseyi, who will wear Canada’s Copa America uniform, and Teemu Pukki, who was injured, in their loss to Seattle. Minnesota is a scary team all around but can be undone by a few absences.

Previous ranking: 11

After conceding goals to the Red Bulls and Atlanta United in their last two games before this weekend, Charlotte FC returned to their clean sheet in a 1-0 win over DC United. That’s six shutouts in the last eight games for Dean Smith’s team.

Previous ranking: 13

The Colorado Rapids were by far the better team in their 2-0 win over Austin FC. That might say more about Austin than Colorado, but there’s nothing wrong with getting three points against a Western Conference rival.

Previous ranking: ten

The Union imploded against Inter Miami, conceding at the death even with a two-man advantage. With Julian Carranza heading for the gate and there being little hope of the club replacing their score, left back Kai Wagner marched into the club after the final whistle. Things are not going well in Philadelphia.

Previous ranking: 14

With Jordan Morris finally back as number 9, the Sounders earned a clear (and much-needed) 2-0 victory over Minnesota. With Raul Ruidiaz relegated to the bench, Morris was lively behind the opposition backline. This is progress for Seattle.

Previous ranking: 17

With reports of new DP Ezequiel Ponce joining as soon as the summer window opens, and a two-goal outing on the road in Atlanta, things are looking up for the Dynamo offense. You can be sure Ben Olsen is smiling at the idea of ​​putting some quality in front of Hector Herrera and Coco Carrasquilla.

Previous ranking: 12

Losing to the Revs is out of style these days, but the Caps did it anyway. Ryan Gauld’s brace wasn’t enough to help Vancouver secure an extremely valuable road point.

Previous ranking: 19

The Timbers enjoyed a bye week before some Western Conference battles against San Jose and Vancouver.

Previous ranking: 15

There’s no shame in coming up empty when attacking Charlotte FC. Still, consistency is an issue for Troy Lesesne & Co. as they now enter the second half of their schedule. To go back to the East, they cannot afford to leave Christian Benteke on an island.

Previous ranking: 16

A few weeks ago, Toronto FC would have looked at the schedule, seen the name “Chicago Fire” and breathed a sigh of relief. While we are in mid-June? Fires are no longer child’s play. Toronto missed starting goaltender Sean Johnson, who is in camp with the USMNT.

Previous ranking: 22

A progress report under the direction of an interim manager is a good thing. Very little about Nashville’s 0-0 draw against the New York Red Bulls was not good. They failed to test Ryan Meara and will be eager to quickly move on to the rest of their schedule.

Previous ranking: 18

This weekend, the Five Stripes played their first match since the dismissal of Gonzalo Pineda – and lost points at home to Dynamo. Also this weekend, starting striker Giorgos Giakoumakis officially completed his move to Cruz Azul. Things are as volatile as in Atlanta.

Previous ranking: 20

Don’t look now, but Orlando City is second to last in the East, just ahead of the New England Revolution. Oscar Pareja’s return to 4-4-2 didn’t work against LAFC. Back to the drawing board.

Previous ranking: 21

For St. Louis, it’s hard to ignore the brutal leg injury suffered by Celio Pompeu in the first half of its 2-0 loss to Dallas. The injury was so brutal that I’m not even linking it here. Get well soon, Celio.

Previous ranking: 26

Make it two straight wins and four straight finishes for the Chicago Fire. Their 4-1 win over Toronto is a step in the right direction for a team desperate to put the Xherdan Shaqiri era behind them.

Previous ranking: 28

The Revs are still at the bottom of the East, but they have now won three games in a row. With goals from teenagers Noel Buck and Esmir Bajraktarevic, New England fans should feel some optimism right now.

Previous ranking: 24

FC Dallas picked up all three points against St. Louis in their first match after parting ways with Nico Estevez. It wasn’t flashy: both goals came from dead balls. But Dallas cannot afford to turn its nose up on certain points.

Previous ranking: 23

According to FBref, the team with the worst expected goal differential per 90 minutes in the West is… Austin FC. Their possession game was slow, heavy and unsuccessful against Colorado.

Previous ranking: 25

Laurent Courtois’ side held strong against Real Salt Lake but couldn’t turn any of their nice left-sided moves into goals. A single point at home is not enough to make things happen.

Previous ranking: 27

The Quakes have allowed nine goals in their last two games. This team simply cannot defend.

Previous ranking: 29

They found rare offensive joy against the LA Galaxy, but that’s not a particularly impressive feat these days. What was even more concerning on Saturday was SKC’s porous defense.

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