The Portland Timbers and D.C. United both made big moves in the Audi 2021 MLS Cup Playoff race during Week 27, leading to stamps all over the Team of the Week presented by Audi.

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Portland steamrolled Real Salt Lake by a 6-1 scoreline, with winger Yimmi Chara providing one goal and one assist. Left back Claudio Bravo continued his strong first season in MLS, while defensive midfielder Diego Chara reinforced his longevity to earn a bench spot.

Meanwhile, D.C. United stormed past FC Cincinnati by a 4-2 scoreline – the game that preceded the visitors parting ways with head coach Jaap Stam. Along the way, Julian Gressel’s three assists procured a starting XI spot and both winger Paul Arriola (two goals) and center back Steven Birnbaum (one goal, one assist) placed on the bench.

Another multi-spot group is the New England Revolution, who beat Chicago Fire FC (3-2) on Wednesday before holding on for victory against Orlando City SC (2-1) over the weekend. Center forward Adam Buksa was all over the latter game, scoring a goal and forcing an own goal. As his team inches closer to the Supporters’ Shield, Bruce Arena earned the head coach spot.

The forward pairing includes Columbus Crew striker Gyasi Zardes, for his brace in a 2-1 win over CF Montréal. And in midfield, Hany Mukhtar continued his stellar season for Nashville SC with two goals in a 5-1 win at Inter Miami CF. San Jose Earthquakes attacking midfielder Eduardo “Chofis” Lopez remained red-hot with a goal and an assist in a 2-0 win over LAFC, and midfielder Joao Paulo was immense in Seattle’s 2-1 bounce-back win at Sporting Kansas City after their Leagues Cup Final loss against Liga MX’s Club Leon.

The backline features Philadelphia Union center back Jakob Glesnes for his key role in a 1-0 win that halted resurgent Atlanta United. New York Red Bulls right back Kyle Duncan’s assist and all-around play in a 1-0 Hudson River Derby win at New York City FC turned plenty of heads, too.

At goalkeeper, Maxime Crepeau made seven saves for Vancouver Whitecaps FC during a 1-0 win over FC Dallas. His stoppage-time penalty kick denial of Franco Jara was immense, keeping them right in the Western Conference playoff hunt.

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Team of the Week (3-5-2, left to right): Maxime Crepeau (VAN) – Claudio Bravo (POR), Jakob Glesnes (PHI), Kyle Duncan (RBNY) – Yimmi Chara (POR), Hany Mukhtar (NSH), Joao Paulo (SEA), Eduardo "Chofis" Lopez (SJ), Julian Gressel (DC) – Gyasi Zardes (CLB), Adam Buksa (NE)

Coach: Bruce Arena (NE)

Bench: Carlos Coronel (RBNY), Steve Birnbaum (DC), Jose Martinez (PHI), Diego Chara (POR), Franco Fragapane (MIN), Paul Arriola (DC), Moussa Djitte (ATX)

The Team of the Week presented by Audi is voted on by the MLSsoccer.com editorial staff.

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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.

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