Talking Soccer: MLS season kicks into full gear

Portland Timbers' Diego Valeri celebrates after scoring a goal in the first half against the New England Revolution during an MLS soccer match Sunday, April 2, 2017, at Providence Park in Portland, Ore. (Pete Christopher/The Oregonian via AP)

The sun is shining and it is time to get back into the MLS as the teams head into their fifth match set since the season started. Columbus Crew SC heads off to the Eastern Conference with three wins and one draw to take the lead with 10 points however, they have played one more game than second and third place Atlanta United FC and New York City FC with seven points. Philadelphia Union has lost two and drawn two of its first four games, resting them in last place of the Eastern Conference with three points just behind Montreal Impact who have drawn three and lost one.

There is a similar situation with the Western Conference. The Portland Timbers sit just ahead of the Houston Dynamo 10 points to nine however, have played five games to Dynamo’s four. The Dynamo will hope to continue their strong start to the season after finishing last in the conference last season with only seven wins. Also, despite FC Dallas having only played three games, they sit third in the conference with seven points coming from two wins and a single draw. At the bottom of the conference, LA Galaxy and Real Salt Lake sit in 10th and 11th, respectively. Galaxy has won a single game in the four they have played with three losses, while Real Salt Lake has lost three and drawn two out of those five they have played.

The New York Red Bulls finished top of the MLS last season and will be looking to continue their success behind the talent of Bradley Wright-Philips, who led the entire MLS in scoring last year with 24 goals on the season and Sacha Kljestan who led the entire MLS in assists with 15. Another team worth watching as the year opens up is returning champion Seattle Sounders who won the MLS Cup to finish last year’s competition as victors.

With the top five European soccer leagues in the world coming to an end of their season and no World Cup this year, the MLS is one of the best places to watch competitive soccer over the summer. While the quality can be lacking at times from retired superstars, the talent and hard work put in by homegrown nationals is something to be admired and worth the watch as it begins to unfold.


Joe Burns is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at joseph.burns@uconn.edu.