Trinidad and Tobago
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United States
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 By Arch Bell

Atlanta and Sporting KC on the up in MLS Power Rankings; Galaxy misery

Atlanta United and Sporting Kansas City make pushes into the top three as the MLS Power Rankings return for Week 29.

1. Toronto FC (no change): Teams that lose twice in a week usually fall at least one spot, but Toronto FC distanced themselves so much that the 5-3 and 3-1 losses to Montreal and New England do not affect their standing.

2. Atlanta United (+2): Atlanta United continue to dominate at home. First a 4-0 midweek win over the LA Galaxy, then they topped Montreal 2-0 on Sunday. They're arguably the team best equipped to take down TFC.

3. Sporting Kansas City (+2): OK, OK: Sporting Kansas City are in that discussion as well. With the best defense in the league, Sporting KC have the goods to stop TFC. They picked up a solid 2-1 win over LA.

4. New York City FC (-1): NYCFC are stumbling of late, and David Villa looked a bit off in Saturday's 1-1 draw against Houston. It might be best for coach Patrick Vieira to rest his key men for the playoffs.

5. Seattle Sounders (-2): The Sounders' 13-match unbeaten streak is over after Saturday's 2-0 loss at Real Salt Lake. Another poor outing from the attack, which is a growing concern for coach Brian Schmetzer.

6. Vancouver Whitecaps (no change): A good 2-1 home win over Colorado on Saturday, but the real test begins with a three-game road trip to Seattle, Sporting KC and the New York Red Bulls.

7. Portland Timbers (+2): If Darren Mattocks torments opponents in the playoffs the way he did in Sunday's 3-0 win over Orlando, there's no reason the Timbers can't reach the MLS Cup.

8. Columbus Crew SC (+2): The Crew impressed again over the weekend, downing the Red Bulls 3-2. Playmaker Federico Higuain -- three assists -- is rounding into postseason form.

9. Real Salt Lake (+2): If it feels like Jefferson Savarino is involved in every RSL goal, it's because he almost is. In the 2-0 win over Seattle, he finished off a one-two combo beautifully for RSL's first and then helped set up the second.

10. New York Red Bulls (-3): Saturday's 3-2 loss to Columbus had to have stung, especially they lost the U.S. Open Cup final on Wednesday. They are winless since Aug. 12.

11. Chicago Fire (-3): Saturday's tilt in Philadelphia felt like a trap game for the Fire, and it played out as such, as they lost listlessly 3-1. They need a strong response on Wednesday in San Jose.

12. Houston Dynamo (+1): Saturday's 1-1 draw at NYCFC was one of Houston's stronger road displays this season. A home-friendly schedule awaits the Texans in the homestretch.

13. Philadelphia Union (+1): Saturday's 3-1 win against Chicago was one of the Union's best matches of the season.

14. New England Revolution (+2): Maybe if New England's MLS schedule was 34 home matches against TFC, it would go undefeated for the season. For now, two wins in two home games -- 3-1 on Saturday -- against the Canadians in 2017 will do.

15. Montreal Impact (no change): What an odd week for the Impact. A stunning 5-3 midweek win at TFC, only to drop a 2-0 contest in Atlanta on Sunday. They're still in the playoff chase, though.

16. San Jose Earthquakes (-4): Dropping a 4-0 clunker at D.C. United is not exactly the way to show you're serious about making the playoffs.

17. Minnesota United (+2): Minnesota were more than happy to take advantage of FC Dallas' malaise in Saturday's 4-1 win. Two wins in a row for the Loons.

18. FC Dallas (-1): Everyone is running out of words to describe this team's horrific fall. Its defending on Saturday was abysmal. Is coach Oscar Pareja on the hot seat?

19. D.C. United (+1): Tough call here. Who was more en fuego in D.C. United's 4-0 win versus San Jose: Patrick Mullins and his four goals or the 200 level at RFK Stadium?

20. Orlando City SC (-2): Did it ever look like Orlando had a chance in Portland on Sunday night? That 3-0 loss could have been much worse.

21. Colorado Rapids (no change): There was decent fight from the Rapids in the 2-1 loss in Vancouver, but just not enough quality, especially up front.

22. LA Galaxy (no change): Two more losses this week, and Giovani dos Santos isn't happy. What is this club doing?

Arch Bell is based in Austin, Texas and covers CONCACAF for ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter @ArchBell .


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