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MLS: Philadelphia earns first win, Houston dominates

Toronto FC 2-1 Orlando City SC: Sebastian Giovinco didn’t hold back against Orlando City SC in front of his home crowd at BMO Field.

Giovinco opened up MLS action on a Wednesday with an early 9’ minute goal. However, that wasn’t his only tally, as his second goal came in the 38’ minute to give Toronto FC the win over Orlando City SC. Despite the loss, the Lions didn’t go scoreless, as Kaká scored the lone goal in the 45’+1’ minute.

Toronto FC did rack up three yellow cards compared to Orlando City’s two yellow cards. The home side had yellow cards shown to goalkeeper Alex Bono (50’), Jozy Altidore (52’) and Michael Bradley (90’+3’). For the Lions, two yellow cards were shown to Jonathan Spector (74’) and Cristian Higuita (85’).

Sporting Kansas City 2-0 New York Red Bulls: Finishing up Wednesday action, Sporting Kansas City hosted the New York Red Bulls, blanking them at Children’s Mercy Park.

Dom Dwyer continued to add more goals to his season-tally. Dwyer had both tallies for Sporting Kansas City, knocking both of his goals past Luis Robles in the 46’ and 68’ minutes. As for Sporting Kansas City’s goalkeeper, Tim Melia, he had two saves compared to Robles’ six saves.

In the cautionary card aspect of the match, the New York Red Bulls had three yellow cards shown, while Sporting Kansas City had two. The Red Bulls’ recipients were Sean Davis (62’), Connor Lade (76’) and Bradley Wright-Phillips (90’+2’). Sporting Kansas City had their yellow cards shown to Ike Opara (30’) and Dwyer (52’).

Colorado Rapids 0-1 Vancouver Whitecaps: Even with goalkeeper Tim Howard back in the lineup, the Colorado Rapids are continuing their downfall in the MLS.

The Rapids were on track to draw a point from their match against the Vancouver Whitecaps. However, in the 84’ minute, Brek Shea scored the lone goal of the match for Vancouver. Meanwhile, things got worse for Colorado was Mekeil Williams was sent off after being shown his second yellow card – resulting in a red card – in the 88’ minute. Williams’ first yellow was shown in the 40’ minute.

Meanwhile, more additional yellow cards were shown when Colorado’s Shkelzen Gashi
was shown his yellow in the 80’ minute and Vancouver’s Fredy Montero was shown his card in the 48’ minute.

Seattle Sounders 0-1 Toronto FC: No, this is not a typo. And for two reasons. Yes, first off, Toronto FC did play two matches in the span of four days. And, yes, this is a re-match of the 2016 MLS Cup Final.

In that match, the Seattle Sounders prevailed. However, this time around, Toronto FC got their revenge. In the MLS Cup Final last year, the Sounders claimed victory at Toronto’s home stadium, BMO Field. In this match, Toronto won at Seattle’s CenturyLink Field. It might not be the MLS Cup Final, but the significance is uncanny.

The match was won in the 23’ minute off a penalty kick from Jozy Altidore. However, two cautionary cards were shown at different times to two players from the Sounders. In the 13’ minute, Jordy Delem was shown Toronto’s first yellow and was followed in the 46’ minute by Osvaldo Alonso. For Toronto, one yellow card went to Chris Mavinga in the 70’ minute.

Three points are important for Toronto, but even more, the Canadian club celebrated the return of goalkeeper Clint Irwin from injury.

“Getting a result like that in the champion’s stadium means something,” said Toronto FC head coach Greg Vanney after the match.

D.C. United 0-1 Montreal Impact: Only a short week after upsetting the dominant Atlanta United FC club, D.C. United could not continue their winning streak against the Montreal Impact.

Ballou Jean-Yves Tabla was the deciding player in the match, which was early on. Jean-Yves Tabla’s goal was scored in the 13’ minute to secure all three points for the Impact. However, for D.C. United, their side did not receive any yellow cards the whole match.

The same couldn’t be said for the Impact. Three yellow cards were shown to Hernán Bernardello (45’), Daniel Lovitz (50’) and Kyle Fisher (59).

Philadelphia Union 3-0 New York Red Bulls: Again, this is not a typo – and again for two reasons. Yes, the New York Red Bulls were in another match in four days.

And yes, the Philadelphia Union won their first match of 2017. The Union did in thanks to C.J. Sapong, who scored all three goals in the 74’, 81’ and 85’ minutes. The last goal – in the 85’ minute – was scored off a penalty kick.

“CJ is very hot right now,” Union head coach Jim Curtin said. “But it is a team effort, I thought the service he got tonight was excellent. CJ has carried us with some goals, but I would add a lot of the passes to him were special as well. He’s confident, and when strikers are confident, they go on runs. He’s done a good job and has scored goals in a lot of different ways. CJ’s a very good striker who’s in good form right now. When he’s confident, he’s as dangerous as any guy in our league.”

However, more important for Curtin was the clean sheet provided by goalkeeper Andre Blake, who made four saves.

“Andre makes those big saves and it gives everyone belief,” Curtin said. “Guys got bigger and it was really good to get the three goals. But I’m actually more proud of the clean sheet, the zero that we kept. To have a big save or a big tackle in the box, I think the guys really laid it on the line tonight. I’m really proud of the players.”

Columbus Crew SC 2-0 New England Revolution: The New England Revolution seem to be joining the New York Red Bulls and the Colorado Rapids on teams declining in 2017.

At MAPFRE Stadium in Columbus, Ohio, Ola Kamara (13’) and Federico Higuaín (53’) secured the win for the Crew. Also, goalkeeper Zack Steffen provided his services for the Crew, making five saves. New England goalkeeper Cody Cropper made four saves for his side.

In the yellow card count, the Revolution had two yellow cards shown to Je-Vaughn Watson (77’) and Antonio Dalamea Mlinar (81’). For the home side, the Crew also had two yellow cards shown to Jonathan Mensah (15’) and Nicolai Naess (69’).

Houston Dynamo 4-0 Orlando City SC: The second loss in four days certainly made the Orlando City SC Lions wishing they were back in their home stadium.

At home, the Lions are undefeated. On the road, it’s much more different. The Lions were dominated by the Houston Dynamo, who topped them with four goals. Scoring for the Dynamo were Alberth Elis (23’), Mauro Manotas (51’, 65’) and Romell Quioto (75’).

On the bright side for Orlando, they only had one yellow card shown to Donny Toia in the 79’ minute. For the Dynamo, their three yellow cards were shown to Quioto (45’+3’), A.J. DeLaGarza (60’) and Adolfo Machado (84’).

Real Salt Lake 0-3 FC Dallas: Mike Petke is now learning the hard way about being a head coach in Major League Soccer.

Petke, who is the head coach of Real Salt Lake, has just experienced his third straight loss. This time, it was at the hands of FC Dallas, a Western Conference powerhouse club. Maximiliano Urruti had the brace in the win, scoring two goals in the 3’ minute and the 90’+1’ minute. In between Urruti’s goals was a single goal from Matt Hedges in the 67’ minute.

While FC Dallas held on to all the goals, they also racked up the yellow cards as well. Two yellow cards were shown to FC Dallas, with Urruti receiving the first in the 57’ minute. Urruti was followed by a Cristian Colmán yellow card in the 79’ minute.

LA Galaxy 2-2 Chicago Fire: The LA Galaxy earned a much needed win late on Saturday night. The Galaxy were able to stop the attacking advances of the Chicago Fire at the StubHub Center.

The Fire took the lead early in the match, with David Accam scoring off a penalty kick in the 13’ minute. Three minutes later, Nemanja Nikolic scored (16’), giving the Fire the 2-0 lead. However, the Galaxy owned the second half, with Daniel Steres scoring in the 56’ minute. He was followed shortly, in the 65’ minute, by Giovani Dos Santos’ goal.

The Galaxy only had one yellow card, shown to Romain Alessandrini in the 74’ minute. Meanwhile, the Fire had two yellow cards shown to Brandon Vincent (60’) and Bastian Schweinsteiger (90’).

In goal for the Fire, Matt Lampson had an easy night, as he wasn’t forced to make any saves. Meanwhile, Brian Rowe of the Galaxy didn’t have that same luxury, but did make four saves.

San Jose Earthquakes 3-0 Portland Timbers: Chris Wondolowski can’t stop scoring and won’t stop scoring for the San Jose Earthquakes.

The forward scored in the 31’ and 55’ minutes, but the first goal for the Earthquakes came in the 8’ minute from Jahmir Hyka. In goal for the Earthquakes, David Bingham made four saves while Portland’s Jeff Attinella made five saves.

The Earthquakes were not shown any yellow cards, but the Timbers were shown three. Darren Mattocks was the first yellow card recipient in the 45’ minute, and was followed by Sebastián Blanco (66’) and Vytautas Andriuskevicius (90’+2’).

Minnesota United FC 2-0 Sporting Kansas City: The laughing stock of the MLS, the Minnesota United FC, had a major upset on Sunday afternoon, defeating the No. 2 team in the Western Conference.

Even Dom Dwyer had to congratulate Minnesota United after their win. The Loons handed Sporting Kansas City a 2-0 loss, which shocked the entire MLS community. It seems that now, after all this time, Minnesota is getting the hang of the MLS.

Before we get to the goals, Bobby Shuttleworth took a major blow to the nose, resulting in it being broken, for the Loons. Instead of being subbed off, Shuttleworth stayed in the match and played the entire 90 minutes in front of his home fans at TCF Bank Stadium. Shuttleworth finished the match with seven saves. Sporting Kansas City’s Tim Melia finished with two saves.

Abu Danladi scored the first goal for the Loons in the 22’ minute. The second goal didn’t take long to get back behind Melia’s net, as Christian Ramirez scored the game-winner in the 39’ minute.

As for yellow cards, both sides got two yellow cards each. For the Loons, their recipients were Ramirez (51’) and Francisco Calvo (72’). For Sporting Kansas City Igor Julião was shown the first yellow in the 17’ minute, followed by Dwyer in the 72’ minute.

New York City FC 3-1 Atlanta United FC: Make that two back-to-back upsets for Atlanta United FC. While the Loons were the laughing stock of the MLS, Atlanta was the hot expansion team that seemed to win every match.

However, three goals from New York City FC changed that on Sunday. David Villa didn’t take long to get the home side on the board, scoring in the 17’ minute. Also scoring were Rodney Wallace (60’) and Maximiliano Morález (61’). Scoring the lone goal for Atlanta United was Carlos Carmona in the 39’ minute.

Atlanta United received four yellow cards, compared to New York City’s one yellow card shown to Ethan White in the 50’ minute. Receiving yellow cards for Atlanta were Julian Gressel (34’), Michael Parkhurst (43’), Jeff Larentowicz (69’) and Tyrone Mears (82’).


Photo courtesy of the Houston Dynamo’s official Twitter.

Follow @RachaelMcKriger on Twitter for all MLS coverage.

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Rachael McKriger
Sports Journalist

Rachael McKriger writes for RSEN Report (Lead Editor), Pittsburgh Sports Castle (Content Editor), Mon Goals and W2M Network, in addition to being a sports stringer/reporter for the Mon Valley Independent newspaper.

A senior of California Univ. of Pennsylvania, you can follow her on Twitter, @RachaelMcKriger, where you can find all of her articles. Search “McKriger Photography” on Facebook, to see her photos.

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