MLS Power Rankings - NYCFC is officially one of the worst teams in MLS, Philadelphia moves up

We said that if LAFC stumbled any more, they'd lose their top spot, and they didn't just lose -- they lost to the Houston Dynamo.

Did Austin FC want to take advantage? Hell no. How about CF Montreál? A little bit.

The Philadelphia Union? All they did is set a record for the most dominant four-match stretch in MLS history.

Now the question is: Who you got for the Supporters' Shield? Are you taking LAFC's match in hand or the Union's, well, everything else.

- MLS on ESPN+: Stream LIVE games, replays (U.S.)
- Soccer on ESPN+: FC Daily | Futbol Americas

1. Philadelphia Union

Previous ranking: 2

Next MLS match: Saturday vs. Orlando City, 7:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

Your new No. 1 team didn't have any 6-0 wins this week, but 4-1 over Atlanta and a comfortable 2-0 defeat of the Red Bulls will have to do as they chase the all-time goal difference record. Crown 'em.

2. CF Montreal

Previous ranking: 4

Next MLS match: Friday vs. Columbus, 7:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

Montreál fell at home to RBNY, but they bounced back by taking the Canadian Classique in wild fashion. They may not have the star power of TFC, but they showed they can outscore the glitterbugs on Lake Ontario.


Previous ranking: 1

Next MLS match: Saturday at FC Dallas, 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

They're not on a losing streak anymore after taking out RSL on Sunday, but that's not enough to stop a bit of a tumble. Not only did they lose three straight, but their third came against lowly Houston on Wednesday. The Black and Gold still don't have a lot of clarity on what their best XI looks like come the playoffs and, before they even get there, they have a fight for the Shield on their hands. Buckle up, boys.

4. Austin FC

Previous ranking: 3

Next MLS match: Saturday at Seattle, 8 p.m. ET, ESPN+

Do losses to Nashville and Portland change the trajectory of the Verde much? Not really. It may change the MVP race and cost Sebastián Driussi some silverware, though.

5. FC Dallas

Previous ranking: 6

Next MLS match: Saturday vs. LAFC, 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

All we've asked from Dallas this season is a little ruthlessness to match their game control. Going to Minnesota and burying the Loons, 3-0, qualifies.

6. Minnesota United

Previous ranking: 5

Next MLS match: Saturday at Portland, 10 p.m. ET, ESPN+

The team of the summer lost two 3-0 games this week, in Salt Lake and to Dallas at home. The absence of Bikaye Dibassy showed up frighteningly quickly.

7. New York Red Bulls

Previous ranking: 7

Next MLS match: Saturday vs. New England, 6 p.m. ET, ESPN+

Winning in Montreál and losing with Philly in town should tell us a lot about RBNY, but it really just reinforced what we already know -- they are the league's best road team and one of the worst in MLS at home. Except seven months into the season, that still doesn't make any sense.

8. Nashville SC

Previous ranking: 9

Next MLS match: Saturday vs. LA Galaxy, 3:30 p.m. ET

Hany Muktar has the numbers to win the MVP and now he has the defining moment too. Welcoming Sebastian Driussi to his home and scoring two to eviscerate Austin is cold blooded. Oh, and it came days after he scored a hat trick to beat Colorado. It was an all-time "I CALLED GAME" week.

9. Real Salt Lake

Previous ranking: 8

Next MLS match: Saturday vs. D.C. United, 9:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

Three points from a Minnesota and LAFC week? Take it and run.

10. Orlando City

Previous ranking: 10

Next MLS match: Saturday at Philly, 7:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

The Lions' comeback against Seattle neatly summed up why you want to believe in this team, but can't quite trust them.

11. Columbus Crew

Previous ranking: 12

Next MLS match: Friday at Montreal, 7:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

You know the Crew are real ones because they didn't call the cops after Gaga Slonina stole a win from them.

12. Toronto FC

Previous ranking: 11

Next MLS match: Saturday at Atlanta, 7:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

What stings more: going two goals up on your rival inside seven minutes and losing or beating up a weakened team, but failing to take the three points you desperately needed and deserved to get into the playoffs? It was a rough week for TFC against Montreál and LA.

13. Portland Timbers

Previous ranking: 18

Next MLS match: Saturday vs. Minnesota United, 10 p.m. ET, ESPN+

The Timbers are putting it together just in the nick of time and will be a tough out come the playoffs. Heard that one before? Wins over Austin and Atlanta have them holding Cascadia's lone playoff spot a week after taking the Cascadia Cup.

14. FC Cincinnati

Previous ranking: 13

Next MLS match: Wednesday at NYCFC, 8 p.m. ET, ESPN+

The Garys beat Charlotte, but, more impressively, nobody at TQL Stadium drowned in the monsoon they played through.

15. LA Galaxy

Previous ranking: 15

Next MLS match: Saturday at Nashville, 3:30 p.m. ET

Playoff spot on the line, at home, against one of the bottom teams in MLS and Chicharito with a penalty to win it. That's a gimme, unless you're the Galaxy, in which case it's an all-time blooper moment with a failed Panenka. Siri, sum up the last six years of the LA Galaxy, please.

16. Inter Miami CF

Previous ranking: 16

Next MLS match: Saturday at Chicago, 8 p.m. ET, ESPN+

Sure, they lost in Columbus midweek, but they got the holiday weekend off in Miami. Inter are winners in my book.

17. New England Revolution

Previous ranking: 17

Next MLS match: Saturday at Red Bulls, 6 p.m. ET, ESPN+

The Revs beat NYCFC and drew Chicago, but will be placed under investigation after Noel Buck, who was born in 2005, scored a goal. That is an attack on me, personally.

18. Seattle Sounders

Previous ranking: 20

Next MLS match: Saturday vs. Austin, 8 p.m. ET, ESPN+

Blowing a two-goal lead to Orlando killed their playoff chances, until a comeback to beat Houston revived them. This team is exhausting.

19. Vancouver Whitecaps

Previous ranking: 19

Next MLS match: Saturday at Colorado, 9:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

They lost to the Quakes and keep their place in the bottom third of the league. That about sums up the Caps.

20. Sporting Kansas City

Previous ranking: 24

Next MLS match: Saturday at Houston, 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

Is SKC ... good? Okay, that might be a bit much, but even after needing a Panenka fail for the ages to draw in LA, there is no doubt that they are very competitive and after spending the first half of the season and the unquestioned worst team in the league, that might qualify them for Team of the Second Half.

21. New York City FC

Previous ranking: 14

Next MLS match: Wednesday vs. Cincinnati, 8 p.m. ET, ESPN+

After getting smoked by D.C. and New England, it's time to call it -- the Pigeons are among the worst teams in MLS, and what they did before losing their manager and reigning MVP can't keep us pretending what we're seeing week in, week out, is not really who they are now.

22. Charlotte FC

Previous ranking: 21

Next MLS match: Saturday vs. NYCFC, 1 p.m. ET, ESPN+

If Charlotte learns nothing else in their inaugural season, it's that it's hard to win if you don't score. After another shutout in Cincy, they've now been held scoreless in more than a third of their matches.

23. Atlanta United FC

Previous ranking: 23

Next MLS match: Saturday vs. Toronto, 7:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

Being asked to travel to Philly and Portland in the same week is cruel. The schedule maker should have to wear at least one of those six dropped points.

24. Colorado Rapids

Previous ranking: 22

Next MLS match: Saturday vs. Vancouver, 9:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

It's September and, after a loss in Nashville and draw in D.C., the Rapids have won only one game away from home all season. At some point it's more efficient to just forfeit the away games.

25. San Jose Earthquakes

Previous ranking: 25

Next MLS match: Saturday at Cincinnati, 7:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

The win over the Caps (and really the entire season) will be forgotten, but this goal will live forever thanks to Cade Cowell and Jackson Yueill.

26. Chicago Fire

Previous ranking: 26

Next MLS match: Saturday vs. Miami, 8 p.m. ET, ESPN+

The Chicago Sloninas worked hard for scoreless draws against New England and Columbus.

27. Houston Dynamo

Previous ranking: 27

Next MLS match: Saturday vs. Kansas City, 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

Raise the "Beat LAFC" banner, Dynamo.

28. D.C. United

Previous ranking: 28

Next MLS match: Saturday at Salt Lake, 9:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+

An undefeated week, and this one isn't a joke. They beat NYCFC and drew Colorado. Okay, maybe a little bit of a joke.