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RSL Climbs Power Rankings After Resounding Win Over Union

Real Salt Lake celebrates after midfielder Albert Rusnak (11) scores the third goal of the night during the second half of a game at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy on Saturday, July 13, 2019. (Colter Peterson, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – It was yet another fun, entertaining week of Major League Soccer that involved a number of head scratching results.

Real Salt Lake beat the number one team in the East, the Philadelphia Union, by four goals in what was a complete and resounding victory.

Jefferson Savarino was the man of the match after he scored the opening two goals of the game, he was later rewarded with an MLS Team Of The Week selection.

LAFC remains the best team in the land, and it is not even close. The Carlos Vela led powerhouse sits some ten points clear of anyone in the league.

Arguably the most in-form team in the league, the San Jose Earthquakes, continue their rise up the standings as they currently sit in the fifth spot in the West.

Down at the bottom of the rankings, there is MLS newcomers FC Cincinnati feeling lonely and finding out the hard way just what it takes to play in the Major Leagues.

Here are the rest of the rankings after Week 19:

  1. LAFC (14-2-4, 46 Points)

Result: 3-1 win at the Houston Dynamo

Recap: A 3-1 win that did not include a Carlos Vela goal, surprisingly. Adama Diomande scored a brace and Diego Rossi put the final nail in the coffin after LAFC went down a goal 3 minutes into the game.

Previous Ranking: 1

Next Up: at LA Galaxy (11-8-1), Friday at 8 p.m. on ESPN.

  1. Seattle Sounders FC (10-5-5, 35 Points)

Result: 2-1 win over Atlanta United FC at home.

Recap: Seattle made the most of their opportunities in the 2-1 over Atlanta United. Rudiaz and Shipp were the difference makers as Seattle generated 18 shots on goal and possessed the ball 57 percent possession.

Previous Ranking: 7

Next Up: vs. Portland Timbers (7-8-3), Sunday at 7:30 p.m. on FS1.

  1. LA Galaxy (11-8-1, 34 Points)

Results: 3-1 loss against the San Jose Earthquakes

Recap: Zlatan Ibrahimovic had no impact on the disappointing 3-1 loss against the in form Earthquakes. Despite Rolf Feltscher’s opening goal of the game, the Galaxy conceded three goals within the last half an hour.

Previous Ranking: 2

Next Up: vs. LAFC (14-2-4), Friday at 8 p.m. on ESPN.

  1. Philadelphia Union (10-6-6, 36 Points)

Result: 4-0 loss to Real Salt Lake on the road.

Recap: Heartbreak on the road as the Philadelphia Union were unable to generate a shot on goal against RSL last weekend. Of their five shots, none hit the target. The Union did not look like the number one team in the East.

Previous Ranking: 3

Next Up: vs. Chicago Fire (5-9-8), Saturday at 5:30 p.m.

  1. Atlanta United FC (10-8-3, 33 Points)

Result: 2-1 loss to the Seattle Sounders on the road.
5-0 win over Houston Dynamo at home on Wednesday.

Recap: After suffering a 2-1 loss on the road against the dominant Seattle Sounders, Atlanta let out their anger against the Houston Dynamo only 3 days after the loss to the Sounders. It was a dominant performance that included 70 percent possession and 23 shots.

Previous Ranking: 6

Next Up: vs. D.C. United (8-5-8), Sunday at 2 p.m. on ESPN.

  1. D.C. United (9-5-8, 35 Points)

Result: 2-2 draw against the New England Revolution
4-1 win against FC Cincinnati away.

Recap: Despite going down two goals, United were able to claw their way back into the game and pinch a point from the hands of the Revolution. Quincy Amarikwa’s 85 minute equalizer sent the home fans ballistic.

Previous Ranking: 5

Next Up: at FC Cincinnati (5-13-2), Thursday at 6 p.m. on ESPN.
at Atlanta United FC (10-8-3), Sunday at 2 p.m. on ESPN.


  1. San Jose Earthquakes (9-7-4, 31 Points)

Result: 3-1 win at LA Galaxy

Recap: The rise continuous for the Earthquakes after a convincing 3-1 over the second best team in the competition, the LA Galaxy. Three goals within the final half an hour was enough to the Earthquakes who went on the road and picked up three points. San Jose ended the night with thirty two shots on goal, compared to the Galaxies five…

Previous Ranking: 14

Next Up: at Vancouver Whitecaps FC (4-10-8), Saturday at 8 p.m.


  1. Minnesota United FC (10-7-3, 33 Points)

Result: 1-0 win over FC Dallas at home.

Recap: Minnesota United somehow picked up three points from their encounter with FC Dallas last weekend, despite being all tied heading into extra time. Mason Toye came off the bench and scored the game winner in the 91st minute and then in the 96th minute Minnesota goalkeeper Vito Mannone made a penalty kick save at the death to give United three points.

Previous Ranking: 12

Next Up: at Real Salt Lake (9-9-2), Saturday at 8 p.m. on or the KSL TV app.


  1. New York Red Bulls (9-8-4, 31 Points)

Result: 2-1 win over NYCFC at home.
3-1 loss to Toronto FC on the road on Wednesday.

Recap: After the 3-1 loss to Toronto, the Red Bulls managed twenty shots compared to Toronto’s nine. They also had 52 percent possession, seemingly controlling the game. Despite the loss, the Red Bulls still currently sit in fourth spot in the East.

Previous Ranking: 9

Next Up: at Orlando City SC (7-9-4), Sunday at 5:30 p.m. on FS1.


  1. Montreal Impact (9-10-3, 30 Points)

Result: 2-0 loss against Toronto FC at home.

Recap: Montreal came back off their throne and conceded two goals within the final 30 minutes to surrender three points at home. The Impact lost the possession battle and shots on target statistic.

Previous Ranking: 4

Next Up: at Columbus Crew (5-14-3), Saturday at 5:30 p.m.


  1. Real Salt Lake (9-9-2, 29 Points)

Result: 4-0 win over Philadelphia Union at home.

Recap: After suffering a heartbreaking loss in San Jose, RSL responded with a resounding 4-0 win over the number one team in the East. Jefferson Savarino scored the opening two goals of the game, and would later earn MLS Team Of The Week honors, while Albert Rusnak and Damir Kreilach also were able to get on the score card.

Previous Ranking: 13

Next Up: vs. Minnesota United FC (10-7-3), Saturday at 8 p.m. on or the KSL TV app.

  1. Toronto FC (8-8-5, 29 Points)

Result: 2-0 win over Montreal Impact on the road.
3-1 win over the New York Red Bulls at home on Wednesday.

Recap: Finally, the return of USMNT players Jozy Altidore and Michael Bradley mean that Toronto have their star power back. It showed as they were able to pick up two wins, and six points over the course of four days this week.

Previous Ranking: 20

Next Up: vs. Houston Dynamo (8-9-3), Saturday at 5:30 p.m.


  1. NYCFC (7-3-8, 29 Points)

Result: 2-1 loss to the New York Red Bulls on the road.

Recap: The battle of New York went against NYCFC unfortunately after the Red Bulls scored the final two goals of the game to escape 2-1 victors. NYCFC’s number nine, Heber, scored the opening goal of the game in the seventh minute. NYCFC had 57 percent possession and still sit in seventh spot in the East.

Previous Ranking: 10

Next Up: at Colorado Rapids (5-10-5), Saturday at 7 p.m.


  1. FC Dallas (8-8-5, 29 Points)

Result: 1-0 loss to Minnesota United FC on the road.

Recap: It was the most entertaining game of the week. Mason Toye scored the only goal of the game in the 91st minute after Jan Gregus shot from outside the box required Jesse Gonzalez to save it, only for it to fall at the feet of Toye to tap it in for the winner. Then, in the 96th minute, Reto Ziegler’s penalty kick was denied by goalkeeper Vito Mannone.

Previous Ranking: 8

Next Up: at Sporting Kansas City (6-7-7), Saturday at 6:30 p.m.


  1. New England Revolution (7-8-6, 27 Points)

Result: 2-2 draw at D.C. United.
4-0 win against Vancouver on Wednesday.

Recap: New England found form over the past few days picking up four points in four days. The 4-0 routing of the Vancouver Whitecaps may give them the confidence boost they have been seeking. FC Cincinnati awaits in what should be yet another victory for the Revs.

Previous Ranking: 21

Next Up: at FC Cincinnati (5-13-2), Sunday at 4 p.m.


  1. Sporting Kansas City (6-7-7, 25 Points)

Result: 3-0 win over Vancouver Whitecaps on the road.

Recap: SKC traveled North to take on the Vancouver Whitecaps and eventually prevail 3-0 victors. SKC won 56 percent possession while also dominating the shot tally having 20 shots and 10 shots on target. Three different goal scorers helped SKC. Star forward Johnny Russell came off the bench and seems healthy, finally.

Previous Ranking: 17

Next Up: vs. FC Dallas (8-8-5), Saturday at 6:30 p.m.


  1. Orlando City SC (7-9-5, 26 Points)

Result: 1-0 win over Columbus Crew at home.
1-1 draw away from home against Portland Timbers.

Recap: Despite being outplayed, Orlando were able to score the only goal of the game in the 84th minute to pick up the three points over the Columbus Crew. Benji Michel was the goal scorer and eventual difference maker. Although, Orlando’s only shot on target eventuated in the only goal. While they also lost the possession battle conceding 57 percent of the ball.

Previous Ranking: 16

Next Up: at Portland Timbers (7-8-3), Thursday at 8 p.m. on ESPN.
vs. New York Red Bulls (9-8-4), Sunday at 5:30 p.m. on FS1.


  1. Portland Timbers (7-8-4, 25 Points)

Result: 2-2 draw against Colorado Rapids at home.
1-1 draw at home against Orlando City.

Recap: As expected, the Portland Timbers are slowly climbing the Western Conference with all the home games they have left. Currently sitting in ninth, just two points from the falling Houston Dynamo. A back and forth affair with the Colorado Rapids meant the Timbers had to share the points.

Previous Ranking: 18

Next Up: vs. Orlando City SC (7-9-4), Thursday at 8 p.m. on ESPN.
at Seattle Sounders FC (10-5-5), Sunday at 7:30 p.m. on FS1.


  1. Houston Dynamo (8-9-3, 27 Points)

Result: 3-1 loss against LAFC.
5-0 loss at Atlanta on Wednesday night.

Recap: Despite Houston Rockets star James Harden buying a share of the club during the week, the results did not favor the Dynamo who are on a slippery fall down the Western Conference currently. If they can wipe the recent results clear from any memory, they are a chance to bounce back against Toronto. If not, it could be a long second half of the year for the Dynamo.

Previous Ranking: 11

Next Up: at Toronto FC (8-8-5), Saturday at 5:30 p.m.


  1. Chicago Fire (5-9-8, 23 Points)

Result: 2-1 loss to FC Cincinnati at home.
2-2 draw against the Columbus Crew at home on Wednesday.

Recap: After a very disappointing loss to MLS newcomers FC Cincinnati, it seemed as though the Fire were to bounce back and pick up a 2-1 win over the Crew on Wednesday night. That was until Romario Williams scored in the 90th minute and broke the hearts, for the second time in days, of the Chicago Fire.,

Previous Ranking: 15

Next Up: at Philadelphia Union (10-6-6), Saturday at 5:30 p.m.


  1. Colorado Rapids (5-10-5, 20 Points)

Result: 2-2 draw against Portland Timbers on the road.

Recap: The Rapids stuck around and played well enough to earn themselves an impressive point on the road against the Portland Timbers. Jonathan Lewis and Sam Nicholson both scored goals for the Rapids as they were able to generate three more shots on goal than the Timbers.

Previous Ranking: 23

Next Up: vs. NYCFC (7-3-8), Saturday at 7 p.m.


  1. Vancouver Whitecaps (4-10-8, 20 Points)

Result: 3-0 loss to Sporting Kansas City at home.
4-0 loss to the New England Revolution on the road on Wednesday.

Recap: Over the past two games, the Whitecaps have lost by a combined 7-0 against teams that sit down the standings. The Whitecaps are in disarray and have seemed to have already thrown in the white towel on the season. They sit in last place, tied with the Colorado Rapids with points.

Previous Ranking: 19

Next Up: vs. San Jose Earthquakes (9-7-4), Saturday at 8 p.m.


  1. Columbus Crew (5-14-3, 18 Points)

Result: 1-0 loss against Orlando City SC on the road.
2-2 draw against the Chicago Fire on the road on Wednesday.

Recap: The Crew sit only in front of FC Cincinnati in the East, and have struggled since getting off to a promising start to the 2019 season. Fortunately, they return star striker Gyasi Zardes from the USMNT. Zardes would eventually score in the 47th minute against the Fire. Promising signs for the Crew as they attempt to revive their season.

Previous Ranking: 22

Next Up: vs. Montreal Impact (9-10-3), Saturday at 5:30 p.m.


  1. FC Cincinnati (5-14-2, 17 Points)

Result: 2-1 win over Chicago Fire on the road.
4-1 loss to D.C. United at home.

Recap: Despite being in the midst of a disappointing inaugural season, FC Cincinnati are not going away quietly. The 83rd minute goal from substitute Fanendo Adi was enough for FC to pick up all three points on the road. They are now tasked with two games in four games, both being at home.

Previous Ranking: 24

Next Up: vs. D.C. United (8-5-8), Thursday at 6 p.m. on ESPN.
vs. New England Revolution (7-8-6), Sunday at 4 p.m.









RSL Schedule
Real Salt Lake
Real Salt Lake
Real Salt Lake
Real Salt Lake
Western Conf. Standings
W-L-T Pts.
Los Angeles FC
21-4-9 72
16-10-8 56
Real Salt Lake
16-13-5 53
15-11-8 53
Los Angeles
16-15-3 51
14-13-7 49
FC Dallas
13-12-9 48
San Jose
13-16-5 44
12-16-6 42
12-18-4 40
Sporting Kansas City
10-16-8 38
8-16-10 34