Major League Soccer Week 7: Recapping All 9 Matches
Week seven of the 2011 Major League Soccer season featured some great matches, and some great individual performances.
In a week full of action that saw all 18 clubs play, an expansion team pulled of a major upset, a rookie scored a hat trick to lead his team to victory, and a late goal from distance brought down a conference leader.
Multiple players also scored their first MLS goal this week.
The following slides will recap each match.
Keep in mind that this is not a ranking list, and the matches are in no particular order.
Chicago Fire 1-1 Colorado Rapids
The Colorado Rapids hosted the Chicago Fire in a match that ended 1-1 for the only draw of the week.
Fire midfielder Marco Pappa opened the scoring just before halftime when he knocked in a cross from teammate Dominic Oduro on a sliding shot that beat the Rapids goalkeeper. The strike was his third goal of the season.
The Rapids kept possession for much of the first half, but could not find a way to score until a few minutes after the break. In his first MLS start, Andre Akpan took a restart from Omar Cummings and found himself open on the right side of the box. His strike slipped through the grasp of Jon Conway and found a home in the back of the net.
The goal ended a scoreless streak of 319 minutes, and the draw snapped a three game losing streak for the Rapids.
Chicago: Marco Pappa (Third of season) 43'
Colorado: Andre Akpan (First of career) 50'
Colorado: Tyrone Marshall (Caution; Reckless Foul) 26'
Colorado: Drew Moor (Caution; Reckless Foul) 49'
Chicago: Dan Paladini (Caution; Reckless Foul) 56'
Sporting Kansas City 0-1 New York Red Bulls
Playing at home, the New York Red Bulls did just enough to earn a 1-0 victory over Sporting KC.
Luke Rodgers scored the only goal of the match shortly after a Rafa Marquez penalty kick was blocked by KC goalkeeper Jimmy Nielsen. Marquez tried to stutter step on his approach but it did not fool Nielsen who dove to the correct side and easily stopped the ball.
Rodgers goal came on a four pass combination that started with a free kick from Marquez who got the ball ahead to Thierry Henry, who in turn sent it to Dwayne De Rosario. He then took a quick touch and crossed it to Rodgers who put it home on a one-timer.
Sporting KC had several chances to tie the match after halftime, but the Red Bull defense held and KC left with the loss.
New York: Luke Rodgers (Third of season) 22'
NY -- Luke Rodgers (Caution; Reckless Foul) 32'
NY -- Teemu Tainio (Caution; Reckless Foul) 42'
NY -- (Caution; Simulation) 93'+
Toronto FC 0-3 Seattle Sounders
Playing in front of a sold out crowd at Qwest field in Seattle, the Sounders scored early and often to take care of struggling Toronto FC.
Seattle mid-fielder Alvaro Fernandez struck first on a ninth minute header that scored a goal that seemed to ignite the Sounders who dominated the visiting team.
Toronto FC were held to very little possession in this match and ended the night with only six total shots, two of which were on goal.
Later in the match Brad Evans added his second and third goals of the season in the 52nd and 75th minutes. His second goal of the match came on a penalty kick when substitute Mikael Yourrasowsky was whistled for a hand ball in the box.
The victory kept the Sounders in third place in the Western Conference, while Toronto FC is in seventh place in the Eastern Conference.
Seattle: Alvaro Fernandez (Second of season) 9'
Seattle: Brad Evans (Second of season) 52'
Seattle: Brad Evans (Third of season, penalty kick) 75'
Toronto: (Caution; Reckless Tackle) 54'
San Jose Earthquakes 0-1 Philadelphia Union
Playing at home, and down a man for the whole second half, the Philadelphia Union escaped with a 1-0 victory and the full three points.
In a match that will be remembered for hard fouls, and several cards for misconduct, the difference came on a penalty kick that was a result of a hand ball in the box by Earthquake defender Jason Hernandez.
Union midfielder Sebastien Le Toux fired the penalty kick past goalkeeper John Busch for the only goal of the match. It was his first of the season.
Philadelphia did well to limit chances for San Jose. Even after a 41st minute red card shown to Union defender Jordan Harvey, the Union chose to attack the ball and kept possession well.
The win helps the Union to stay in the upper tier of the Eastern Conference, and the loss for San Jose lands them at the bottom of the standings.
San Jose must rebound quickly as the travel to Portland to face a suddenly hot Timbers team in U.S. Open Cup play.
Philadelphia: Sebastien Le Toux (First of season, penalty kick) 76'
Philadelphia: Amobi Okugo (Caution; Reckless Foul) 27'
Philadelphia: Faryd Mondragon (Caution; Unsporting Behavior) 31'
San Jose: Brandon McDonald (Caution; Unsporting Behavior) 32'
Philadelphia: Jordan Harvey (Ejection; Violent Conduct) 41'
San Jose: Bobby Convey (Caution; Delaying a Restart) 60'
D.C. United 1-4 Houston Dynamo
In a match played on Friday night, Houston rookie sensation Will Bruin scored early and never looked back. He ended the night scoring three goals in a dominating 4-1 victory over D.C. United.
Bruin's first goal came early where in the fourth minute he placed a great shot near post that came from a turnover in the midfield.
D.C. United was able to tie the match in the 39th minute on a great free kick from Marc Burch who beat the keeper near post.
It did not take Bruin and the Dynamo long to respond. Bruin notched his second goal of the night in the 41st minute on a cross from teammate Brad Davis that he was able to nod home.
His third goal also came off of his head, when a ball was sent in from a set piece in the 57th minute.
Forward Cam Weaver ended the scoring by taking advantage of a bad throw in that he intercepted and took to the goal.
The win put the Dynamo in first place for a day until the Red Bulls could play. They now sit it third.
Houston: Will Bruin (Second of season) 4'
DC: Marc Burch (First of season) 39'
Houston: Will Bruin (Third of season) 41'
Houston: Will Bruin (Fourth of season) 57'
Houston: Cam Weaver (Third of season) 62'
DC:(Caution; Reckless Foul) 66'
Real Salt Lake 0-1 Portland Timbers
In what would prove to be the biggest upset of the weekend, and the biggest win in the history of the Portland Timbers young franchise, the expansion team beat the favorite by a score of 1-0.
Real Salt Lake entered the game just days after losing an emotional match to Monterrey in the final leg of the CONCACAF Champions League.
Due to having just played on Wednesday, RSL started several reserve players to give the regular starters a much needed break. They played flat for much of the match.
Despite what Real Salt Lake did, give the credit to the Timbers. They played well all night and had several good scoring chances.
The only goal of the night was scored on a crossing ball from Timber midfielder Kalif Alhassan who found the foot of Kenny Cooper in front of the net. Cooper easily directed the ball into the goal.
Real Salt Lake had several chances as well, and kept possession for most of the second half, when the Timbers looked content to settle in a play a defensive match. The strategy worked, and the Timbers earned the first clean sheet in their history.
The loss by Real Salt Lake ended an 18-game unbeaten streak overall, and a nine-game unbeaten streak on the road.
The Timbers moved to fifth place in the Western Conference with 10 points.
Portland: Kenny Cooper (Third of season) 22'
Portland:(Caution; Reckless Tackle) 72'
Vancouver Whitecaps 1-2 Columbus Crew
The expansion Vancouver Whitecaps made their first ever trip to Columbus for a match against the Crew. Even though the new team played tough, the hosts were more than happy to send them away with a 2-1 loss.
Columbus Crew forward Emilio Renteria was the hero of the day, scoring two goals within nine minutes of each other.
After a scoreless first half, he scored his first goal in the 50th minute when he punched in a penalty kick following a foul he received from Whitecap goalkeeper Jay Nolly.
Renteria's second came just nine minutes later in the run of play when he was slipped a pass in front of the box and finished near post against Nolly.
Seventeen year old rookie Omar Salgado scored his first career MLS goal in the 69th minute, when he used his head to beat the goal keeper on a looping ball sent in from outside the box. His goal made the game interesting late, but the Whitecap rally fell short.
Columbus: Emilio Renteria (Second of season) 50'
Columbus: Emilio Renteria (Third of season) 59'
Vancouver: Omar Salgado (First of career) 69'
Vancouver: Jonathan Leathers (Caution; Reckless Foul) 37'
Vancouver: Greg Janicki (Caution; Tactical Foul) 57'
Vancouver: Omar Salgado (Caution; Reckless Tackle) 91'+
New England Revolution 0-3 Chivas USA
In a match where Chivas USA desperately needed a victory, they were able to come out strong and earn the full three points with a dominant 3-0 victory over the New England Revolution.
Chivas used solid possession for most of the game and took advantage of the Revolution to post the win. In the 22nd minute, Nick LaBrocca scored his first goal of the season on a crossed ball from the end line.
Marcos Mondaini added the second goal on an acrobatic kick in the 45th minute, and Alejandro Moreno stole a bad back pass from the Revolution, raced to the goal and put it into the back of the net in the 57th.
The Revolutions new acquisition and U.S. National Team member, Benny Feilhaber had a difficult match and was rendered ineffective for the most part.
The win brought Chivas up to nine points, and the loss held the Revolution at nine as well. New England now has a losing record at 2-3-3.
Chivas: Nick LaBrocca (First of season) 22'
Chivas: Marcos Mondaini (Firstof season) 45'
Chivas: Alejandro Moreno (Third of season, unassisted) 57'
New England: Franco Coria (Caution; Reckless Foul) 33'
New England: Shalrie Joseph (Caution; Reckless Foul) 39'
Chivas: Ben Zemanski (Caution; Persistent Infringement) 66'
L.A. Galaxy 1-2 FC Dallas
Following a rain and lightening delay of over an hour, FC Dallas midfielder Brek Shea nailed the match winning goal from distance to beat the L.A. Galaxy and send the Western Conference leaders to just their second loss of the season.
Following a scoreless first half, Dallas forward Fabian Castillo scored on a volley he received in the box that looped over the head of Galaxy goalkeeper Donavan Ricketts.
U.S. National Team player Landon Donovan did not allow the lead to last long as he equalized on a laser pass from teammate Juhninho that he touched into the net. He did pay the price for the goal as he ended up on the ground wrapped around the post.
The Galaxy had several chances before the weather delay, but could not capitalize. After the break, in the 88th minute is when Shea rewarded the die hard fans that stayed through the delay.
His shot from distance could be considered an early goal of the year candidate.
FC Dallas did the rest of the Western Conference a big favor by beating the Galaxy and preventing them from earning points in this match.
Dallas: Fabian Castillo 1 (First of career) 47'
LA: Landon Donovan (Third of season) 51'
Dallas: Brek Shea (Second of season) 88'
LA: Juninho (Caution; Reckless Foul) 55'