Week 5 saw some classic MLS moments. The results were straight out of what makes this league great: every home team won or drew with road dogs only managing 10 goals in the 10 matches played.
The week also had some of the best that MLS has to offer. Bastian Schweinsteiger learned that American journalists don’t know what the World Cup is and then discovered that if he just loafs around in the goal box no member of the Montreal Impact will think to cover a world class midfielder who has won Champions League, the World Cup, the Bundesliga about 20 times, and the Bambi Award.
If that couldn’t be topped, Nick Rimando showed why he has what it takes to be the USMNT third string keeper when he executed half of a Cruyff turn and perfectly set up Minnesota United striker Christian Ramirez to put the Loons up 3-1 against RSL.
Chris Seitz gave up the MLS sad face goal of the week when Chucky Lozano got revenge on America for Michael Orozco trying to debone his leg earlier this year and sent a cross into the FC Dallas box that skipped past the Pachuca forward and FCD defender and dribbled into the goal sending Los Tuzos through to the CONCACAF Champions League Final.
Anyway, I picked loads of wrong players last week and got all red arrows so I might be a little cranky about the garbage goals we saw, but I’m not bitter or anything. Onto the Rekrap:
In your face Grant Wahl
Minnesota won this week! At one point in the game the Dark Clouds chanted “Grant Wahl are you watching?” in reference to the Sports Illustrated writer saying MLS executives thought the team would win perhaps 5 games this year. With the victory they’re on pace to really show him and get 6.4 wins, so I hope he was watching. All that is to say that Christian Ramirez had an awesome game and scored 14 points, which at his price is a great return.
I mentioned my red arrows but I can’t tell you how bad my team was - my keeper Bill Hamid scored more points than all but 3 of my field players and none of my picks got more than 8 points. I blame the international break which should be abolished so that we don’t have to play in the co-hosted Russia/Ukraine World Cup and my fantasy team can get back into the top 250.
New coach, same old mountains
Los Angeles hates airplanes and mountains and maybe the hills on Vancouver’s crest gave them some psychic trauma because they lost to a terrible team last week 4-2. Whether it is adjusting to new coaching or Jermaine “everyone hates me and I don’t get any credit” Jones not working out in the midfield for LA, the Galaxy now sit lower in the Western Conference table than Minnesota (go ahead and laugh).
Goalkeeper: I am down on clean sheets again this week - I was down on them last week and there were 5 kept out of 20 possible goalless scorelines, so I suppose I was a little right. Did you know Colorado has an MLS team? They haven’t played in about three weeks and I think they’ll be rusty against Sporting Kansas City so Tim Melia (SKC, $5.7) could be a good option. Joining him on the list is Joe Bendik (ORL, $5.0) who is playing a New York Red Bulls team who can’t seem to figure out how to play their 4-2-2-2 formation which is so innovative that it stops them from scoring goals.
Defenders: Ike Opara (SKC, $5.3) is decently priced and has been scoring bunches of points, if you add Melia he’d be a good shout. Usually I avoid defenders on the road but I’m adding Joevin Jones (SEA, $5.1) this week. Seattle has looked good on defense all year and is playing a San Jose Earthquakes team whose best player is Anibal Godoy - I don’t think they’ll hold up well against the stout Sounders defense with Ozzie Alonso breaking things up in midfield against them.
Midfielders: Lee Nguyen (NE, $10) has two goals, an assist, and a bleached blonde pile of bonus points the past three weeks. He’s at home against a Houston team that isn’t quite good enough to bunker and counter but isn’t good enough to control a game in midfield either. I think this shapes up well for the Revolution attacker.
One thing that is working for the Galaxy is Romain Alessandrini (LAG, $9.4) who has 26 points off of the last two games. The Marseillais midfielder has a good matchup with Montreal bringing their leaky defense to the Pacific coast this weekend.
He was on the list last week but Julian Gressel (ATL, $4.5) is worth having. He has a decent floor and it’s only a matter of time until he finds the back of the net the way he played last week. At his price he should at least be on the bench or set up for a switcheroo.
Forwards: Everyone laughed really hard at RSL for losing to Minnesota and their keeper pretending to be a soccer player but Joao Plata (RSL, $9.0) is going to work up an appetite for his Easter fanesca this week against the Whitecaps who played midweek and will journey to the Rockies over the weekend.
In six games against DC United, David Villa (NYCFC, $10.3) has six goals and two assists. DC looked better against Philly but failed to keep a clean sheet after I added their keeper and a defender from them so I’m rage dropping them and keeping Villa.
Clint Dempsey (SEA, $9.4) is in amazing form, his shot that hit the cross bar against Atlanta probably would have gone in against San Jose and I think he’s worth a look.
Captain: I think Lee Nguyen is a good option for the arm band this week.
Any player from FC Dallas and the Vancouver Whitecaps after their games this week when they both lost in the CONCACAF Champions League.
Alejandro Bedoya will probably be super bummed that the USWNT are going to get the same per diem as him now and will miss another penalty and knock in a few own goals for good measure, so I’d avoid him this week.