MLS Power Rankings: Week 25

Power Rankings: Darren Mattocks

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What's happened in Vancouver? Suddenly the Whitecaps could be in some real trouble if they don't right the ship quickly, and it shows in this week's rankings. The LA Galaxy and Seattle Sounders, meanwhile, both made a jump after big wins.

Let us know what you think in the comments below.

Only MLS regular-season games reflected on schedule. All times are Eastern.

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So after a few weeks of indifferent performances, they dropped four on the Rapids despite absolute stinkers from Chris Wondolowski and Marvin Chávez. And none of the four was a header, either. That was the bizarro-Quakes, apparently.

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Kei giveth, Kei taketh away. The fact is that Sporting are a very one-dimensional team right now, and are about to become moreso with Teal Bunbury on the shelf for the rest of the season. There are some offensive concerns, to put it mildly, heading down the stretch.

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Fredy Montero, Christian Tiffert, Mauro Rosales and Eddie Johnson have spent about 110 minutes on the pitch together. In that time the Sounders have scored seven goals. Are you not entertained?!

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Get a draw on the road vs. the league's second-best team and drop a spot? Not fair, but that's how good Seattle was — plus it's hard to ignore that RBNY didn't put a single shot on goal. That said, five of their final seven are at home, so if anybody's going to push San Jose, it could be the Red Bulls.

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Bobby Boswell nailed it after Saturday's disappointing tie: The sharpness and ruthlessness that characterized this team over the summer just isn't there right now. Chances are they'll figure it out again pretty quick, though. Home field for the playoffs is too tempting a carrot.

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Hanging onto that sixth spot by a thread. After a fairly decent midweek showing against Tauro FC in the Champions League, RSL came out absolutely listless against Philly. They still got a road point out of it, which will have to be good enough, but their Shield hopes may be done.

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Jose Villarreal sure looks like the real deal, and Michael Stephens has quietly been one of the league's most effective midfielders over the past month. It's all about the backline, though. At what point can we retroactively award Omar Gonzalez the 2011 MVP?

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Everything that had been going right for the Fire went wrong in that midweek pasting by D.C. They'll need to put it behind them quickly, because the upcoming schedule is packed with six-pointers.

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Five straight wins makes them the league's hottest team. A healthy Alessandro Nesta means they'll have one of the league's best backlines. And Patrice Bernier may just be the league's best two-way central midfielder right now. This is not an expansion team.

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Here come the Crew. When Robert Warzycha finally dismantled the Schelotto-era team after 2010, a lot of fans screamed bloody murder. But he's bided his time, collected talented young pieces and finally seems to have hit the jackpot with Federico Higuaín. Columbus look very much like a playoff team, and have the games in hand to become one. Magnificent rebuilding job done there.

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The midweek 4-2 thrashing of Chicago (it really wasn't that close) outweighs the hammering they took at Stade Saputo. Ben Olsen decided to rest his big guns — for the most part, anyway — on the road, and paid for it. They'll have a Wednesday rivalry match to try to find some solace.

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Three straight losses, just nine points from their last 13 games overall. Their midfield is pretty bereft of ideas as Barry Robson hasn't really lived up to the billing of a Designated Player, and Kenny Miller's taken his time to fit in as well. They have breathing room, but it could get tight quick if they don't grind out some wins.

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Brutal loss to LA may very well have put the postseason out of reach. FCD have six games left and probably need to win at least four of them to have a realistic hope at making the playoffs. Won't be easy, especially with red-hot Seattle coming to town this weekend. But at least they have all their pieces back and healthy for the first time ever.

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They were simply ripped apart by San Jose, conceding goals from all angles in that loss. Hendry Thomas should help the overworked Jeff Larentowicz close down space in midfield, and that's where it has to start for Colorado: denying easy service and wide-open lanes that they've so readily conceded in the center of the pitch.

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The Freddy Adu situation is a tough one. Clearly he hasn't been good enough to give him the keys to the car and simply build around him. Just as clearly, the normally punchless Union are a better attacking team with him out there. Whether they're better overall is still up for debate. Nothing's ever easy when Freddy's involved.

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An offensive outburst! Robin Fraser would probably be a lot happier about the two goals his team scored if they hadn't shipped six, and looked utterly helpless in the process. The Power Rankings Politburo is thinking about starting a "Poor Dan Kennedy" Tumblr.

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So, let's see here: a big, mobile target forward with soft feet and a good passing eye. Darlington Nagbe suddenly playing like the league's best trequartista. Two lively wingers pushed very, very high into the attack. Diagonal runs and triangles everywhere. Sure does sound exactly like how Caleb Porter would want this team to play. You know, if he were coach and all.

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The offense finally clicked, right before they got steamrolled by the Higuaín Express.

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Excellent road point against Houston on the weekend, but Portland's improved form caused the Reds to sink back to the bottom. Sorry, Torontonians. Positives: You still have the CCL to play for, Luis Silva has been excellent lately and Darren O'Dea looks pretty solid. Good pieces for 2013.