Week 27 MLS Power Rankings
With August ending and September beginning, there are just two months left in the Major League Soccer season.
With that being said, every match from here on out has an immense meaning when it comes to the playoff race.
One club that has helped themselves plenty in the playoff race is Real Salt Lake, who put on a stellar display on Friday night against Portland.
Was that performance enough to keep RSL on top of the B/R MLS Power Rankings for another week?
Continue reading to find out where they and the other 18 clubs landed this week.
Every week, our MLS experts will rank each team from one to 19.
Each team will be given a point total for its specific ranking.
For example, the team that is ranked No. 1 is given 19 points, while the last-place team receives just one point.
We will compile the votes each week, and the team with the highest point total will be placed atop the power rankings.
Meet Our Voters
All statistics obtained from MLSSoccer.com
19. D.C. United
Last Week's Ranking: 19
Week 27 Result: Loss to New York, 2-1.
D.C.'s trip up I-95 ended in their league-leading 18th loss of the season.
Before they play their final six matches against Eastern Conference foes, Ben Olsen's club will play both Los Angeles-based clubs beginning with Chivas USA on Sunday.
18. Toronto FC
Last Week's Ranking: 18
Week 27 Result: Draw with New England, 1-1.
Andrew Wiedeman's late first-half goal was enough to earn the Reds a draw at home on Friday.
With the playoffs being a long, lost dream by now, the only thing left for Ryan Nelsen's club to do this season is build momentum into 2014.
17. Chivas USA
Last Week's Ranking: 17
Week 27 Result: Draw with Vancouver, 2-2.
All of a sudden, Chivas USA are climbing away from the basement of the league.
With their draw at Vancouver on Sunday, the Goats have now recorded five points out of their last four matches.
It also helps that Erick Torres is scoring like a man possessed at the moment, with four goals in his last two matches.
16. Columbus Crew
Last Week's Ranking: 15
Week 27 Result: Loss to Seattle, 1-0.
There was a bit of drama going on off of the pitch this week between the cities of Seattle and Columbus.
It just so happened that the two clubs from those respective cities also faced each other at Crew Stadium, which resulted in a loss by the Crew.
Their club may not be doing all too well, but the fans in Columbus will get a chance to shine next Tuesday when the United States hosts Mexico in World Cup qualifying at Crew Stadium.
15. San Jose Earthquakes
Last Week's Ranking: 16
Week 27 Result: Loss to Los Angeles, 3-0.
San Jose could not recreate the same theatrics from the last California Clasico against the Galaxy.
Instead of a delivering an inspiring last-minute comeback, the Earthquakes could not find the back of the net and were dominated by their intrastate rival.
14. FC Dallas
Last Week's Ranking: 14
Week 27 Result: No Match Played
FC Dallas had the week off to regroup from their rough August.
Schellas Hyndman's club will begin their September playoff charge at home against Vancouver on Saturday.
13. Vancouver Whitecaps
Last Week's Ranking: T-11
Week 27 Result: Draw with Chivas USA, 2-2.
Vancouver needed a late rally to rescue a point against Chivas USA on Sunday.
Tommy Heinemann was forced to play the role of hero for the Whitecaps as his stoppage time goal saved the club from a complete disaster in front of their home fans at BC Place.
The draw left the club as one of four clubs in the league with 37 points, and all but one of those clubs are on the outside looking in at the playoffs right now.
Martin Rennie's club are currently two points behind Portland for the final Western Conference playoff spot.
12. Chicago Fire
Last Week's Ranking: 13
Week 27 Result: Draw with Houston, 1-1.
Chicago had a win all wrapped up on Sunday until they were denied the full three points by a late Houston goal.
That late goal dealt a huge blow to the playoff hopes of the Fire, who would have been tied for the final Eastern Conference playoff spot with a win.
Instead, Frank Klopas' club sit two points behind New England for the final playoff berth.
11. New England Revolution
Last Week's Ranking: 9
Week 27 Result: Draw with Toronto, 1-1.
New England extended their unbeaten run to three matches on Friday night in Toronto.
Diego Fagundez struck the back of the net for the ninth time this season in the second minute when things were pointing toward a win for the Revs.
The Revolution will have plenty on the line in their match on Sunday against the Eastern Conference leaders, Montreal.
10. Houston Dynamo
Last Week's Ranking: T-11
Week 27 Result: Draw with Chicago, 1-1.
The Dynamo were the beneficiaries of a 90th-minute Adam Moffat rocket as they earned a point in Chicago on Sunday.
Moffat, who has become known this season for his blistering goals, kept his club on pace with New England for the final playoff berth in the East.
A midweek win over the Crew could boost Houston into the top five once again.
9. Philadelphia Union
Last Week's Ranking: 10
Week 27 Result: Draw with Montreal, 0-0.
For the second consecutive week, Philadelphia delivered a disappointing result.
After being blown out by New England on the road last week, the Union put just four shots on target in their goalless draw at home with Montreal.
A West Coast excursion to San Jose now awaits the Union on Sunday as they look to recover from their miserable two-match spell.
8. Colorado Rapids
Last Week's Ranking: 5
Week 27 Result: Loss to Sporting, 2-1.
Colorado were handed a chance to assert themselves amongst the hierarchy of MLS on Saturday, but they failed to do just that against Sporting.
The Rapids did put up a valiant effort, but they were forced to suffer a loss against one of the league's best on the road.
With the loss, Oscar Pareja's club dropped down to fourth place in the West.
7. Seattle Sounders
Last Week's Ranking: 8
Week 27 Result: Win over Columbus, 1-0.
Will someone please pay Eddie Johnson?
The United States international scored his seventh goal of the season, and third in five matches, to place the Sounders into third place in the West.
Maybe the forward will get his well-deserved pay raise if he continues to score and launch Seattle toward a bid at their first MLS Cup.
6. Montreal Impact
Last Week's Ranking: 6
Week 27 Result: Draw with Philadelphia, 0-0.
How do you follow up a five-goal outburst at home?
Well, of course you do so with a goalless draw on the road.
That is exactly what happened with the Impact against Philadelphia.
Despite the draw, the Impact still sit on top of the Eastern Conference standings thanks to a better goal differential than New York and Sporting.
5. New York Red Bulls
Last Week's Ranking: 7
Week 27 Result: Win over D.C., 2-1.
By the power of Tim Cahill's head, the Red Bulls won their 12th match of the season on Saturday night.
Cahill's eighth goal of the season proved just how valuable he is to the New York attack.
Some may argue that the Australian is more valuable than his fellow designated player, Thierry Henry, but that is a discussion for another day.
4. Portland Timbers
Last Week's Ranking: 3
Week 27 Result: Loss to Real Salt Lake, 4-2.
Friday night was a bad night to be a part of the Timbers Army.
Portland was sliced open on numerous occasions at Rio Tinto Stadium by Real Salt Lake in front of a national audience.
With their loss and other results around the league not going in their favor, the Timbers dropped to the dangerous fifth spot in the Western Conference standings.
3. Sporting Kansas City
Last Week's Ranking: 4
Week 27 Result: Win over Colorado, 2-1.
A golazo and a beautiful goal made up of a run of play lifted Sporting to their 12th win of the season.
The creative play by Peter Vermes' club began in the 33rd minute against Colorado when Benny Feilhaber delivered a scintillating golazo to open the scoring.
Graham Zusi continued the quality in the 88th minute when he finished off a delightful run of play with the match-winning goal.
2. Los Angeles Galaxy
Last Week's Ranking: 2
Week 27 Result: Win over San Jose, 3-0.
The Landon Donovan and Robbie Keane show continued to marvel fans of the league this weekend.
The best attacking combination in the league played a part in all three goals of the California Clasico.
Donovan scored in the 26th minute on a goal assisted by Keane, while the Irishman took care of business in the 43rd and 67th minutes with a brace of his own.
The two have combined for 20 goals this season, Keane has 12, Donovan has eight.
1. Real Salt Lake
Last Week's Ranking: 1
Week 27 Result: Win over Portland, 4-2.
If there was any doubt left surrounding the abilities of Real Salt Lake, they erased all of them on Friday night in front of a national audience.
RSL unleashed a four-goal fury on the Timbers at home, an outburst that was highlighted by a Javier Morales golazo in the 67th minute.
Alvaro Saborio also scored his 10th goal of the season as Jason Kreis' club kept their lead in the Western Conference and Supporters' Shield standings at five points over the Galaxy.