Idle Red Bulls climb to MLS Power Rankings peak as foes falter
There's a big shakeup in the Power Rankings this week, thanks in part to a big four days for the Earthquakes, the dominance of the Galaxy, and a host of other surprising results across the league in Week 25.
1. New York Red Bulls (+2)
What did the Red Bulls do to earn the top spot in this week's rankings? They didn't lose. Idle New York, which is on a six-game unbeaten streak, goes to Chicago on Wednesday.
2. Vancouver Whitecaps (+2)
Vancouver has slipped a point back of LA in the Western Conference, but Saturday's win over FC Dallas still means Carl Robinson's team has won three of the last four -- with a game in hand on the Galaxy.
3. LA Galaxy (+3)
It seems inevitable that LA will jump up to the top spot on their current form. Sunday's demolishing of New York City FC wasn't unexpected, but does feed the narrative that if LA wants all of the trophies, they can win all of the trophies.
4. Sporting Kansas City (-3)
A week to forget for Sporting, who suddenly look fatigued with the most pressurized portion of the season yet to come. Wednesday's loss to San Jose was bad, Saturday's loss to Columbus was distressing.
5. Portland Timbers (no change)
When does a draw feel like a win? When it's the Portland Timbers getting a point at home after falling behind a Western Conference rival. Darlington Nagbe picked a good time to get back on the score sheet.
6. New England Revolution (+2)
The Revs didn't play this weekend, but move up nonetheless. They head into an away match against the Philadelphia Union unbeaten in their last four.
7. D.C. United (-5)
The big drop for United comes down to a two-loss week at New York and -- worse -- at home against San Jose. The East's leaders scored just once and conceded five goals over the two games. Ben Olsen needs to fix whatever it is that has his team conceding early.
8. Columbus Crew (+2)
Four points this week for Crew SC, who executed a thrilling comeback over Sporting KC on Saturday. There are still defensive issues to sort out, but for the time being, Columbus is still collecting points toward a playoff spot.
9. FC Dallas (-1)
FC Dallas will always have a wealth of speed with which to go at teams, but without Mauro Diaz -- who missed out against Vancouver due to injury -- Oscar Pareja's side just doesn't have enough danger.
10. San Jose Earthquakes (+6)
Chris Wondolowski scored his 100th and 101st goals for the San Jose Earthquakes this week. A true MLS rags-to-riches story, Wondolowski will go down as having one of the most remarkable careers in league history.
11. Toronto FC (no change)
Toronto FC has no problem beating Orlando City, which they did on Saturday 5-0, it's everyone else they seem to struggle with. Over three matches, the Reds have outscored OCSC 11-1.
12. Seattle Sounders (-3)
Just when it looked like Sigi Schmid had the Sounders ship righted, they hit a rock in Utah. There are lots of doubts about the Sounders right now.
13. Houston Dynamo (-1)
No one takes road wins for granted in MLS, but where you're up 2-0 with a quarter hour to play, you should win. Houston didn't in Portland, and it might bite them later.
14. Real Salt Lake (+1)
Was RSL's win over Seattle on Saturday the start of a push for an eighth consecutive playoff berth? Maybe, but we've wondered that about RSL wins before.
15. Montreal Impact (-1)
Didier Drogba's Montreal debut was spoiled by a home loss to the Union. Maybe it was the moment, or maybe Frank Klopas still has a work-in-progress on his hands in Quebec.
16. Philadelphia Union (+3)
The East is so tight that even in ninth, the Union still have dreams of making a playoff run. This weekend was especially good for Jim Curtin's side, as they not only got three points toward the effort, but took points off the Impact.
17. New York City FC (no change)
NYCFC got a lesson at the hands of the Galaxy on Sunday afternoon in Carson. More troubling than that, however, were David Villa's post-game comments. Those kinds of things can wreck team morale.
18. Orlando City (-4)
Winless in their last four matches, Orlando City has conceded 13 goals in that span. The disastrous defending comes immediately after the club was forced to release Sean St. Ledger, which is probably not a coincidence.
19. Colorado Rapids (+1)
The Rapids are a long way from lifting themselves off the bottom of the Western Conference standings, but winning on the road will help. Dillon Serna's game-winner against Chicago came less than a minute into the match.
20. Chicago Fire (-2)
Fire fans chose this weekend's match, at home to woeful Colorado, to protest the club's direction. Chicago losing 1-0 to the Rapids on the day only serves to reinforce their message.
Jason Davis is a writer from Virginia covering American soccer. He also hosts a daily soccer podcast that covers the beautiful game. Follow him @davisjsn.