The Columbus Crew and Real Salt Lake both cruised in Week 30, and now the Audi MLS Cup Playoff hopefuls pace the Team of the Week presented by Audi.
RSL placed forward Damir Kreilach (one goal, two assists) and defender Aaron Herrera (one assist) into the 3-4-3 formation, which is overseen by interim head coach Pablo Mastroeni. Their plaudits arrive after a 3-1 win over the Colorado Rapids, a rivalry match that ended with them hoisting the Rocky Mountain Cup.
As for Columbus, forward Gyasi Zardes (two goals) and winger Pedro Santos (one goal, two assists) were dynamite in a 4-0 win over Inter Miami CF that kept the defending MLS Cup champions in the Eastern Conference’s postseason race.
LAFC forward Cristian Arango (two goals, one assist) rounds out the front line following a 3-1 win over the San Jose Earthquakes, while Houston’s Darwin Quintero (one goal, one assist) is another headliner in midfield after they downed Western Conference-leading Seattle 2-1 at home.
To complete the midfield group, Orlando’s Junior Urso netted the game-winner in a 1-0 victory at FC Cincinnati and Atlanta’s Marcelino Moreno netted a stoppage-time insurance strike in a 2-0 dispatch of Toronto FC.
Aside from Herrera, there’s also D.C. United's Donovan Pines and the New York Red Bulls’ Andrew Gutman in the defensive trio. Pines provided lockdown defense in a 0-0 draw with Nashville SC, and Gutman did the same in a 1-0 Hudson River Derby win over New York City FC.
At goalkeeper, Minnesota’s Tyler Miller was stellar in a 1-0 win at Austin FC. He made eight saves in a shutout that kept the Loons in the West’s seventh and final playoff spot.
Team of the Week (3-4-3, left to right): Tyler Miller (MIN) – Andrew Gutman (RBNY), Donovan Pines (DC), Aaron Herrera (RSL) – Pedro Santos (CLB), Junior Urso (ORL), Marcelino Moreno (ATL), Darwin Quintero (HOU) – Cristian Arango (LAFC), Damir Kreilach (RSL), Gyasi Zardes (CLB)
Coach: Pablo Mastroeni (RSL)
Bench: Joe Willis (NSH), Kevin Paredes (DC), Julian Araujo (DC), Alvaro Medran (CHI), Cristian Casseres Jr. (RBNY), Sacha Kljestan (LA), Brian White (VAN)
Audi Goals Drive Progress
MLS Academies have been identified as one of the most important resources for building on-field talent in North America. Through the Audi Goals Drive Progress initiative, Audi has committed $1 million per season in an effort to advance academies league-wide, and to drive progress for the sport. For every goal scored in the regular season, Audi will contribute $500 into the Audi Goals Drive Progress fund to directly support each MLS Club Youth Academy.