MLS Team of the Week, 9-15
USA TODAY Sports

Team of the Week (Wk 27): FC Dallas lead the way in pursuit of top-three finish in Western Conference

It took one of the more unlikely golazos of the season, but FC Dallas took an iron grip on fourth place in the Western Conference with a 2-1 win over the Vancouver Whitecaps on Saturday, and three Dallas players looked so good in the process that they were among the league's Team of the Week.

The result gives Dallas an eight-point lead over Vancouver with six games remaining, and now FCD can turn their focus to avoiding the Knockout Round, as they trail Real Salt Lake by just one point for third place.

This week's team also includes familiar names like Lee Nguyen and Graham Zusi, while interim Philadelphia Union manager Jim Curtin earned his second straight selection as Team of the Week coach thanks to his club's two-goal comeback.

Who else earned a spot on the latest Team of the Week? Read on to find out.

GK: Joe Bendik (Toronto FC) At fault for conceding a second-half penalty kick at Chicago, Bendik more than made up for it with a double save on the ensuing play. He also had a superb stop at the end of the first half to keep Toronto in the game, which finished 1-1.

D: Kendall Waston (Vancouver Whitecaps) Arguably the most physically dominant player in MLS at the moment. Players bounce off of him and teams can't stop him on set pieces at the other end.

D: Jámison Olave (New York Red Bulls) Provided huge tackles and immense presence, as always. Unlucky on first Philadelphia goal.

D: Matt Hedges (FC Dallas) The Dallas central defense was physical, sharp and organized all evening in their 2-1 win over Vancouver, and Hedges was a main reason why.

M: Victor Ulloa (FC Dallas) The kid is legit. He was very effective in the center of the park against Vancouver and deserves more hype than he's gotten so far.

M: Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City) Produced a goal and an assist and displayed some good footwork in 1v1 situations to help Sporting leave their losing streak behind.

M: Ignacio Piatti (Montreal Impact) Piatti is in such sublime form (goal, assist mid-week vs. the LA Galaxy) that you can't blame Frank Klopas for resting Piatti against New England and saving Montreal's best player for Wednesday's Champions League match against New York.

M: Lee Nguyen (New England Revolution) The addition of Jermaine Jones has only made Nguyen's talents glow brighter. He dictates the flow of the game and can both create and finish. Every week is the Lee Nguyen Show for the Revs.

F: Obafemi Martins (Seattle Sounders) Real Salt Lake may have one of the most experienced back lines in the league, but they still couldn't stop Oba. He's that dominant.

F: Blas Pérez (FC Dallas) Relatively few theatrics and measured efficiency from the Canalero, which worked well given his recent efforts – two games in a week – with Panama. Crazy golazo to boot.

F: Andrew Wenger (Philadelphia Union) Another strong performance on the left; He's impossible to stay with and works hard on both sides of the ball. In short, he's perfect for the Union's counter-attacking system.

Coach: Jim Curtin (Philadelphia Union) – His team went down 2-0 in the rain with a cup final coming up on Tuesday. It would have been easy to throw in the towel. Yet even with David Moyes in the stands and rumors of Rene Meulensteen taking the permanent job, this Union team never once quit on Jim Curtin.

Bench: Donovan Ricketts (Portland Timbers); Zach Loyd (FC Dallas), Lovel Palmer (Chicago Fire); Javier Morales (Real Salt Lake), Mauro Rosales (Vancouver Whitecaps), Diego Valeri (Portland Timbers); Deshorn Brown (Colorado Rapids)

Series: 

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