If you were recently waiting for an MLS-style scoring binge, keep waiting.
This past week felt more like a scoring famine. One team (Real Salt Lake) mustered a single goal despite playing the majority of the game against nine men. Eight teams (Chicago, Vancouver, New England, Colorado, D.C. United, FC Dallas, Chivas USA, Philadelphia) left with zeroes in the goal column. Only one team (Toronto FC) scored more than one goal in their game. Mixing that many missed scoring chances is not a recipe for the kind of fantasy stats you want.
So let's never speak of last week's scoring droughts again and look towards next week. Deal?
Here are the MLS links for injuries and discipline, usually updated Tuesdays and Fridays:
Tip(s) of the week: Toronto FC, Vancouver, FC Dallas, Philadelphia, LA and San Jose all play twice this week.
TOP XI for points:
GK - Kevin Hartman (DAL) – After shattering the MLS record last season with a .620 GAA, Hartman has come back to earth this season with just two shutouts. Look for him to add to that total this week with two home games, one against Toronto FC and the other vs. an anemic Philadelphia Union offense.
D - Omar Gonzalez (LA) – The 2009 Rookie of the Year should find ample opportunites to beef up his stats with two games this week, the first away against Philadelphia and the other at home in the Home Depot Center vs. Sporting Kansas City.
D - Chris Leitch (SJ) – The veteran had seven assists for the season two years ago and will be looking to get back to that level with two games this week, the first away in Vancouver and the second at home against Columbus.
D - Alain Rochat (VAN) – With one goal so far this season, the former FC Zürich player will have two opportunities to add to that total with a home game vs. San Jose and an away game against New England.
M - Benny Feilhaber (NE) – The US international has a great opportunity to make some offensive noise with a home game this week against a Vancouver team that has given up the second-most goals in the league this season.
M - Shalrie Joseph (NE) – Even though he only plays once this week, the 32-year-old Grenadan has been looking sharp this season so far, scoring three goals and tallying one assist. This Saturday, he plays at home against a Vancouver defense that has already allowed 14 goals this season and which also has another game on Wednesday.
M - Davide Chiumiento (VAN) – The Swiss International has five assists on the season while serving as the maestro for the Vancouver offense. With two games to play in this week, look for him to add another assist or two.
M - Chris Wondolowski (SJ) – Though the 2010 Golden Boot winner is off the pace to match the 18 goals he scored in 2010, Wondolowski has still played well with three goals to his credit this season. He has two chances to add to that total this week with an away game against Vancouver and at Buck Shaw Stadium against the Crew.
F - Landon Donovan (LA) – The Galaxy captain has four goals and one assist on the season and continued his goal-scoring streak with a strike against the Red Bulls on Saturday. He will look to add to those totals this week with an away game in PPL Park vs. the Union and at home against a Sporting KC team that has allowed 13 goals this season.
F - Camilo (VAN) - The 22-year-old Brazilian has three goals and one assist on the season but hasn't landed on a score sheet in a month. He will look to bust that slump in two favorable matchups this week, one at home against San Jose and the other away at Gillette Stadium vs. the Revolution.
F - Sebastien Le Toux (PHI) – This may be the week that the 2010 MLS All-Star gets back on track. He will play at home against the LA Galaxy then away against FC Dallas.
Here are our official teams for Week 9 in the basic game:
GK - Jay Nolly (VAN), D - Sean Franklin (LA), UTL - Javier Martina (TOR), M - Jamie Smith (COL), M - Eric Avila (DAL), F - Landon Donovan (LA), F - Diego Cháves (CHI).
GK - Josh Ford (SEA), D - Olukorede Aiyegbusi (SKC), UTL - Joao Plata (TOR), M - Chris Wondolowski (SJ), M - Davide Chiumiento (VAN), F - Camilo (VAN), F - Landon Donovan (LA).
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