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This Week in MLS – July 6, 2016

This Week in MLS – July 6, 2016
  • Sigi vs. Bruce: Major League Soccer’s two winningest coaches square off Saturday on ESPN
  • Jake Gleeson leads MLS Cup champion Portland Timbers in visit to Supporters’ Shield winners New York Red Bulls
  • MLS stats and standings leaders at halfway mark of 2016 season
  • 2016 AT&T All-Star media credentials application and media schedule available
  • Finalists to be announced for MLS WORKS Community MVP Contest presented by Wells Fargo
  • Week 17 AT&T Goal of the Week voting now open
  • Check It Out, Quotables, Sweet Tweets
  • Week 18 Game Previews
Sigi vs. Bruce: Major League Soccer’s two winningest coaches square off Saturday on ESPN
On Saturday, the two winningest coaches in MLS history, Bruce Arena (LA Galaxy) and Sigi Schmid (Seattle Sounders FC) square off at CenturyLink Field (3 p.m. ET, ESPN/Deportes).
With a combined seven MLS Cup titles, 423 regular season wins (479 including postseason games), and four Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup championships to their credit, both coaches understand how to get the best out of their players.  Both coaches have won MLS Cup with the LA Galaxy and the pair are the only coaches in MLS history to win MLS Cup with more than one team:
Bruce Arena: D.C. United (1996, 1997), LA Galaxy (2011, 2012, 2014)
Sigi Schmid:  LA Galaxy (2002), Columbus Crew (2008)
While Arena, now in his 14th season coaching MLS teams, has collected more MLS Cup titles, Schmid, in his 17th MLS season coaching, has earned more wins (253 compared to Arena’s 226). Arena takes on Schmid this weekend riding a four-game undefeated streak against the Sounders’ coach and owning a 10-7-7 all-time regular season record against Schmid’s teams.
An always loud crowd is expected to witness the two star-studded squads face off on Saturday, as the Galaxy seem to be firing on all cylinders. Galaxy midfielder Steven Gerrard looks for a continued strong performance after registering two assists in last week’s win over Vancouver. His seven assists on the season rank third in MLS. Fellow midfielder Giovani dos Santos, meanwhile, is one of only two players to rank in the top 10 in both goals (seven) and assists (five) on the season. While Seattle has had a rough front half of the season, going 5-9-2 in league play, a bright spot for the Sounders has been the play of rookie forward Jordan Morris who leads rookies this season with six goals to his credit.
Bruce Arena
Five MLS Cup titles (D.C. United, 1996, 1997; LA Galaxy, 2011, 2012, 2013)
196 Regular Season wins, 30 Postseason wins
Three Supporters’ Shield titles (D.C. United, 1997; LA Galaxy, 2010, 2011)
One U.S. Open Cup title (D.C. United, 1996)
Five NCAA championships (University of Virginia)
Arena vs. Seattle Sounders FC: 8-4-6 (regular season)
*includes time with New York Red Bulls and LA Galaxy
Arena vs. Sigi Schmid: 10-7-7 regular season (4-3-0 postseason)
Sigi Schmid
Two MLS Cup titles (LA Galaxy, 2002; Columbus Crew SC, 2008)
227 Regular season wins, 26 Postseason wins
Five U.S. Open Cup titles (LA Galaxy, 2001; Seattle Sounders FC, 2001, 2009, 2010, 2014)
Three Supporters’ Shield titles (LA Galaxy, 2002; Columbus Crew SC, 2008; Seattle Sounders FC, 2014)
Three NCAA championships (UCLA)
Schmid vs. LA Galaxy: 7-9-8 (regular season)
*includes time with Columbus Crew and Seattle Sounders FC
Schmid vs. Bruce Arena: 7-10-7 regular season (3-4-0 postseason)
MLS Coaching Tree
In addition to coaching star players such as David Beckham, Landon Donovan, Clint Dempsey, and Freddie Ljungberg, Arena and Schmid have influenced the domestic coaching scene. Six of the 20 current head coaches in MLS have played for Arena or Schmid, and one, Greg Vanney (Toronto FC) has played under both. 
On Thursday, will publish an interactive MLS coaching tree that will show all the current coaches, assistants and technical directors who have played for one of the 20 current head coaches. Unlike most of their peers, Arena and Schmid made names for themselves before MLS existed. See the secrets behind their longevity and success in Thursday’s episode of MLS INSIDER, presented by adidas.
Jake Gleeson leads MLS Cup champion Portland Timbers in visit to Supporters’ Shield winners New York Red Bulls
There has been one constant in Portland Timbers goalkeeper Jake Gleeson’s career: he steps up when needed. And that opportunity has come on the smallest and biggest of stages. Gleeson began playing soccer by chance, instead focusing on the more popular sports of rugby and cricket in his native New Zealand. After replacing an injured goalkeeper on his friend’s local squad, Gleeson excelled at the position, eventually earning a spot on the New Zealand Under-17 World Cup team. Following a professional path to the Timbers, Gleeson was again called upon in last year’s MLS Cup run, posting a crucial shutout of rival Vancouver Whitecaps FC in the Western Conference semifinals. This season, Gleeson has excelled as the No. 1 goalkeeper filling in for the injured Adam Kwarasey, as he ranks fifth in the league with five saves and has the Timbers clicking at the right time with a current six-game unbeaten streak.
Portland will need Gleeson to perform on a big stage once again as the defending MLS Cup champion Timbers travel east to take on defending Supporters’ Shield winners New York Red Bulls at Red Bull Arena on Sunday, July 10 (6 p.m. ET, ESPN2/ESPN Deportes). Compared to the clubs’ positions after 18 games in 2015, Portland is a mere four points off pace (6-6-6, 24 points, West #7), while the Red Bulls are three points off its Supporters’ Shield stride from a season ago (7-9-2, 23 points, East #4). The Red Bulls enter Saturday riding a five-game home winning streak and are led by midfielder Sacha Kljestan, whose 10 assists this season rank first, and forward Bradley Wright-Phillips, who is tied for third in goals scored with nine. Portland counters with its own deadly duo in forward Fanendo Adi, tied with Wright-Phillips on nine goals, and midfielder Diego Valeri, who ranks in the top 10 in the league in both goals (seven) and assists (five).
2015 Records
Games 1-18
New York Red Bulls, 7-1-5, 26 points
Portland Timbers, 8-6-4, 28 points
Games 19-34
New York Red Bulls, 11-4-1, 34 points, East #1
Portland Timbers, 7-5-4, 25 points, West #3
Official MLS stats and standings leaders at halfway mark of 2016 season
Eastern Conference Standings
New York City FC271.5187562931-2  3-3-5  4-2-1
Philadelphia Union261.441876529263  6-1-2  1-5-3
Montreal Impact241.51664627243  4-1-3  2-3-3
New York Red Bulls231.281879228253  6-2-0  1-7-2
D.C. United211.241756617170  4-4-1  1-2-5
Toronto FC201.25165651819-1  2-1-3  3-5-2
Orlando City SC201.25164482829-1  3-0-6  1-4-2
New England Revolution191.12174672331-8  3-1-4  1-5-3
Columbus Crew SC161163672125-4  3-1-4  0-5-3
Chicago Fire140.93153751520-5  3-2-3  0-5-2
Western Conference Standings
FC Dallas341.7919105430246  7-0-3  3-5-1
Colorado Rapids331.941792619118  7-0-2  2-2-4
Real Salt Lake281.651785428271  5-0-2  3-5-2
LA Galaxy261.5317638301812  5-0-4  1-3-4
Sporting Kansas City251.32197842122-1  5-4-1  2-4-3
Vancouver Whitecaps FC241.33187832731-4  4-2-3  3-6-0
Portland Timbers 241.33186662829-1  6-2-1  0-4-5
San Jose Earthquakes221.29175571920-1  5-0-3    0-5-4
Seattle Sounders FC171.06165521420-6  4-4-0  1-5-2
Houston Dynamo171174852325-2  4-1-3  0-7-2
Goal Leaders
David VillaNew York City FC12
Ignacio PiattiMontreal Impact10
Fanendo AdiPortland Timbers9
Bradley Wright-PhillipsNew York Red Bulls9
Sebastian GiovincoToronto FC8
Cyle LarinOrlando Ctiy SC8
Dom DwyerSporting Kansas City8
Assist Leaders
Sacha KljestanNew York Red Bulls10
Mauro DiazFC Dallas9
Steven GerrardLA Galaxy7
Joao PlattaReal Salt Lake6
Ethan FinlayColumbus Crew SC6
Sebastian GiovincoToronto FC6
Lee NguyenNew England Revolution6

Point Leaders (Goals+Assists)

Sebastian Giovinco Toronto FC 14
David Villa New York City FC13
Ignacio PiattiMontreal Impact13
Giovani dos SantosLA Galaxy12
Sacha Kljestan New York Red Bulls12
Diego ValeriPortland Timbers 


Save Leaders

Player TeamSaves
David OustedVancouver Whitecaps FC65
Steve ClarkColumbus Crew SC62
Brian RoweLA Galaxy60
Joe BendikOrlando City SC57
Jake GleesonPortland Timbers55
David BinghamSan Jose Earthquakes54
2016 AT&T All-Star media credentials application and media schedule available
Media planning to cover the 2016 AT&T MLS All-Star Game may now apply for credentials by CLICKING HERE. Without exception, credential applications must be received by Wednesday, July 20. MLS All-Stadium credentials, team season credentials and credentials from previous MLS and SUM events will not be recognized for any of the media events surrounding the All-Star Game. 
The 2016 AT&T MLS All-Stars will take on English Premier League club Arsenal FC at Avaya Stadium in San Jose, CA, on July 28 at 7:30 p.m. ET (ESPN, UniMás, UDN, TSN2 and RDS). MLS and the San Jose Earthquakes will host a week of festivities in San Jose, culminating in the annual showcase that will pit MLS’ best against one of the most well-known clubs in the world. 
A full media schedule outlining the week’s events can be found by CLICKING HERE.
Finalists To Be Announced for MLS WORKS Community MVP Contest Presented by Wells Fargo
On Thursday, after nearly a month of nominations, the finalists for the MLS WORKS Community MVP Contest presented by Wells Fargo will be announced. The twenty finalists, one from the local community of each MLS club, will be selected based in his or her outstanding efforts in using soccer as a tool to help make a positive impact in the community. Each Community MVP finalist will receive two tickets to a 2016 MLS match and a trip for two to the 2016 AT&T MLS All-Star Game in San Jose, CA. A fan vote, accessible at, will determine the Grand Prize winner, who will be recognized on the field at halftime of the 2016 AT&T All-Star Game at Avaya Stadium, and will receive a $10,000 donation for their selected charity.
Full details on the finalists and will be announced on Thursday, July 7, and fans will be able to vote during the three-week contest window of 12:00 PM ET on July 7, 2016 through 4:00 PM ET on July 28, 2016.                   
AT&T Goal of the Week voting now open (Week 17) – CLICK HERE to vote
  •          Robbie Keane (LA) Sends a beautiful curling kick upper 90 from outside the box
  •          Michael Barrios (DAL) Sneaks past a defender and chips the keeper for the goal
  •          Cristian Maidana (HOU) Hits free kick into upper 90 for game-winning goal
  •          Kei Kamara (NE) Heads home a Chris Tierney corner kick for second goal of the match
  •          Jordan Morris (SEA) Pivots to juke a defender before sending a screamer into back of the net
  •          Graham Zusi (SKC) Slots home a powerful left-footed shot past diving goalkeeper Steve Clark
  •          Burrito Martinez (RSL) Slices through two defenders and shoots over diving goalkeeper Bill Hamid
  •          Jack Harrison (NYC) Collects Andre Pirlo corner, jukes defender and slams home right-footed shot
Check It Out
“What I’m really pleased with is the way we played, the performance. There was a big expectation, a pressure on their shoulders. And the way they respond today, they make me proud. Today, they gave the answer to you. We are strong and we are determined and there is a really good spirit on this football club.”
New York City FC coach Patrick Vieira on the clubs response and first victory over rival New York Red Bulls
“It’s what I heard it to be. It was my expectation, having spent a week in Denver in all the excitement.”
Colorado Rapids goalkeeper Tim Howard on the atmosphere at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park
“I get paid to score goals. That’s my job. And obviously to get a result and three points is the most important thing.”
LA Galaxy forward Robbie Keane on scoring in his first game back from the Ireland National Team at Euro 2016
"I think we had a complete performance. The effort we put in 90-plus minutes was incredible. We created a lot of situations to score. I'm really happy to celebrate this important tradition here in Frisco."
FC Dallas coach Oscar Pareja on his team’s dominant victory in front of a celebratory crowd
“It doesn’t matter if you score 50 goals or one. They all feel good when you score.”
Sporting Kansas City defender Matt Besler on scoring the game-winning goal, his first goal since 2011
Sweet Tweets
Tim Howard (‏@TimHowardGK): Loved every moment of last night! Thanks for the warm welcome #Rapids96
David Villa (@Guaje7Villa): A little bit of music on the road to Boston. Tomorrow big game at Gillette Stadium. Let's go @NYCFC  #weareone
Kei Kamara (@keikamara): Yes @OlaKamara we can only dream of it. Kamara (x2) and @BillHamid28  looks like a  takeover 
Tsubasa Endoh (@tsubasa_endoh): Finally met one of the Japanese players in the @MLS, @masatokudo9 .
Charlie Davies (@CharlieDavies9): Coming back from injury is never easy. Have faith in yourself and enjoy the process #grind #eatsleepbreathe
Week 18 Game Previews
Wednesday, July 6
New England Revolution vs. New York City FC, 7:30 p.m. ET
  • Kei Kamara scored his first two goals since coming to the Revolution, but still saw his club lose a two-goal lead in a 3-2 defeat by the Montréal Impact on Saturday, their second consecutive defeat.
  • Jack Harrison scored his second goal in MLS and assisted on a second goal as New York City FC defeated cross-river rivals New York Red Bulls for the first time ever, a 2-0 triumph Sunday afternoon at Yankee Stadium.
  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. NYCFC’s Thomas McNamara and New England’s Chris Tierney each scored in the first half, leaving the teams in a 1-1 draw March 26 at Yankee Stadium.
  • The teams met three times a season ago in NYCFC’s first year in MLS, and the Revolution won two, once at each ground. New England claimed a 1-0 victory July 18 at Gillette Stadium, then took a 3-1 victory on Decision Day at Yankee Stadium. New York City FC won the first ever meeting between the teams, a 2-0 win March 15 at Yankee Stadium, the club’s first-ever victory in Major League Soccer.
Friday, July 8
Orlando City SC vs. Houston Dynamo, 8 p.m. ET (UNI)
  • Cristian Maidana made interim head coach Wade Barrett a winner for the first time since taking the coaching reins, whipping home a free kick deep into stoppage time to give the Dynamo a 1-0 win against Philadelphia Union on Saturday evening. The goal, five minutes into stoppage time, was the latest free kick scored in Dynamo club history.
  • Orlando City SC suffered their heaviest defeat of the season, losing for the first time since May 15 after a five-game undefeated run (2-0-3), in their 4-0 loss at FC Dallas on Monday evening.
  • The teams met once in Orlando City SC’s inaugural season, the expansion club claiming a 1-0 victory March 13 at BBVA Compass Stadium on an own goal, their first win as an MLS team.
San Jose Earthquakes vs. FC Dallas, 10:30 p.m. ET (UNI)
  • The Quakes saw their winless run extended to six games, in just a second loss in that time, after their 1-0 loss at the Chicago Fire on Friday evening.
  • Mauro Diaz set up a pair of goals as FC Dallas extended their home undefeated streak to 15 games dating to last August, in their 4-0 win against Orlando City FC on Monday evening. Diaz is now second in MLS with nine assists for the season, one behind the Red Bulls’ Sacha Kljestan.
  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season, and the first two have been draws. They reached a 2-2 result April 9 at Toyota Stadium; the May 28 meeting at Avaya Stadium ended goalless.
  • FC Dallas is undefeated in the last six matchups between the clubs. FCD is undefeated in their last three home games in the series, winning both meetings at Toyota Stadium a season ago.
  • The teams have played to scoreless draws in both meetings all-time at Avaya Stadium. The FC Dallas victory in the final meeting at Buck Shaw Stadium – a 5-0 victory Aug. 16, 2014 – was their first on the road against San Jose since 2009, a 2-1 win in Santa Clara.
Saturday, July 9
Seattle Sounders FC vs. LA Galaxy, 3 p.m. ET (ESPN)
  • Jordan Morris scored the sixth league goal of his rookie season, as Sounders FC answered back-to-back losses with a 1-1 draw at Toronto FC on Saturday evening. Sounders FC have one win in their last seven MLS games.
  • In his return to the Galaxy lineup after missing five games to international duty, Robbie Keane netted his fifth goal of the season in his club’s 2-0 win against Vancouver Whitecaps FC on Monday evening at StubHub Center. Steven Gerrard assisted on both LA goals, now with seven assists for the season.
  • The teams met three times a season ago in league play, the Galaxy winning two, both matches at StubHub Center, a 1-0 win April 12 and a 3-1 win Aug. 9. The teams reached a 1-1 draw Oct. 4 at CenturyLink Field.
  • Sounders FC have not won at the Galaxy since 2009, now 11 trips in league and MLS Cup play without a win.
  • The teams also met in the Knockout Round in the MLS Cup Playoffs last year, Sounders FC winning 3-2 at CenturyLink Field. The teams have met four times in the last six seasons in the MLS Cup Playoffs; last year’s victory was the first time Sounders FC have advanced.
Philadelphia Union vs. D.C. United, 7 p.m. ET
  • Union have suffered back-to-back losses for the first time this season, as the Houston Dynamo scored from a free kick with almost the final kick of the game deep in stoppage time for a 1-0 victory Saturday at BBVA Compass Stadium.
  • D.C. United made it three games in a row without defeat with a second draw in that time, Jared Jeffrey scoring in an MLS game for the first time since 2013 with a late, late header in a 1-1 draw at Real Salt Lake on Saturday evening.
  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Richie Marquez scored the game’s lone goal in second-half stoppage time for a Union victory May 20 at Talen Energy Stadium.
  • United won the final two league meetings between the teams last season, both wins coming at RFK Stadium, a 2-1 win on May 30 and a 3-2 victory July 26. United have won the last three regular season meetings between the teams in Washington; Union’s last victory on East Capitol Street came April 21, 2013.
  • Union have won the last two meetings in Chester, both by 1-0 scorelines. The teams had met four of the last five years in the U.S. Open Cup before this season, each winning twice.
Toronto FC vs. Chicago Fire, 7:30 p.m. ET
  • Jordan Hamilton scored for a second consecutive game – the first two MLS goals for the Homegrown Player – but Toronto FC were pegged back into a 1-1 draw by Seattle Sounders FC on Saturday evening at BMO Field. TFC have one win in their last seven league games.
  • John Goossens scored the first goal of his MLS career, netting the game’s only goal as the Fire claimed a 1-0 win against the San Jose Earthquakes on Friday evening at Toyota Park, snapping a two-game losing slide.
  • The teams split their season series a year ago, each winning at home by a 3-2 scoreline. When Toronto FC won at BMO Field on Sept. 26, it was their win against the Fire since the 2010 season, when they won 4-1 on May 8 at BMO Field. The Fire had won six of the 12 meetings in between, with six draws.
  • The Fire have never lost to TFC at Toyota Park, with five wins and five draws in 10 meetings all-time in Bridgeview, including the win there last April 4.
New England Revolution vs. Columbus Crew SC, 7:30 p.m. ET
  • When Kei Kamara scored twice for the Revolution in the 3-2 loss at Montréal Impact – his first two goals in seven starts with the club after coming over from Columbus Crew SC – it gave him 81 goals for his MLS league career, now 14th in the all-time standings. It was his 14th career multiple-goal game, tied for 10th all-time in the league.
  • Ola Kamara scored a pair of goals, but Crew SC saw their winless run extended to four games as Sporting Kansas City came back for a 3-2 win Sunday afternoon at Children’s Mercy Park. Kamara has seven goals in the last five games, dating back to May 28.
  • The teams played twice a season ago, Crew SC winning one, with one draw. Crew SC won 2-1 on June 24 at Mapfre Stadium, their second consecutive home win in league play vs. the Revolution. New England had won both matches in Columbus during the 2013 regular season, as well as the first leg of their Eastern Conference Semifinal Series in 2014.
  • Crew SC have come away with points from two of their last three league visits to Gillette Stadium, with the teams reaching a scoreless draw there last April 11.
Real Salt Lake vs. Montreal Impact, 10 p.m. ET
  • Juan Manuel Martinez scored his fourth goal over the last seven league games, but Real Salt Lake weren’t able to hold out, ending in a late 1-1 draw with D.C. United on Friday evening at Rio Tinto Stadium. Real have a win and two draws in three MLS games in Sandy since leaving for a month-long road swing.
  • The Impact made it four games without loss with a second victory in that time, coming from two goals down for a 3-2 win against the New England Revolution on Saturday evening at Stade Saputo. Rookie Michael Salazar scored the first two goals of his professional career while Ignacio Piatti scored his 10th goal of the season, now second in the MLS Golden Boot standings.
  • The home team has won every meeting in the all-time series between the clubs. The Impact took a 4-1 win last May 16 at Stade Saputo in their lone encounter. The Impact also won 3-2 in Montréal in 2013.
  • Real have won both matches all-time vs. the Impact at Rio Tinto Stadium, including a 3-1 victory there July 24, 2014 in the last meeting in Utah.
Vancouver Whitecaps FC vs. Colorado Rapids, 10 p.m. ET
  • Whitecaps FC weren’t able to build upon a first win in their last four matches, falling 2-0 to the LA Galaxy on Monday evening at StubHub Center.
  • Tim Howard recorded the shutout, making two saves in his first MLS start in nearly 13 years, as the Rapids reached a scoreless draw with the Portland Timbers on the Fourth of July at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. It was Howard’s first shutout in an MLS game since May 17, 2003, when he did it for the MetroStars – at Colorado.
  • The teams met three times a season ago, and the home team won each. The Rapids won twice at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, a 1-0 win on May 23, and a a 2-1 win July 4. Whitecaps FC took a 2-0 win Sept. 9 in the lone matchup at BC Place.
  • The Rapids have won the last five meetings between the teams at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park; Whitecaps FC won there in 2012 for their lone triumph on the Rapids’ home ground. The Rapids win April 5, 2014 in Vancouver was their second victory ever at BC Place, now in seven visits all-time.
Sunday, July 10
New York Red Bulls vs. Portland Timbers, 6 p.m. ET (ESPN2)
  • The Red Bulls saw their winless run extended to three games – all away from Red Bull Arena – in their first loss ever to cross-river rivals New York City FC, 2-0 on Sunday afternoon at Yankee Stadium.
  • The Timbers extended their undefeated run to six games – alternating wins and draws over the span – after reaching a goalless result with the Colorado Rapids on Monday evening at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.
  • The Red Bulls won the lone meeting between the teams a year ago, a 2-0 win Sept. 20 at Providence Park, the second consecutive year the road team has won the only meeting. The Timbers won 2-1 on May 24, 2014 at Red Bull Arena, their first win ever in Harrison in three visits.
  • The Red Bulls have come away with points on three visits lifetime to Portland, reaching a pair of 3-3 draws before last year’s meeting, in 2011 and 2013.
Sporting Kansas City vs. New York City FC, 8 p.m. ET (FS1)
  • Matt Besler scored his first goal of the season – his first goal in MLS play since 2011 – for the stoppage-time winner as Sporting extended their undefeated streak to four games with a come-from-behind 3-2 win against Columbus Crew SC on Sunday evening at Children’s Mercy Park.
  • When NYCFC defeated the Red Bulls for the first time ever, in their fifth meeting all-time, it was their third win in a row, matching the club record set three times previously. David Villa extended his lead atop the MLS Golden Boot standings with his 12th goal of the season, his fourth over the previous five matches.
  • The teams met once a season ago, Sporting Kansas City claiming a 1-0 win March 28 at Yankee Stadium in the only meeting in NYCFC’s inaugural MLS campaign.