Power Rankings: Week 4

We're a month into the season. Who's moving toward raising the MLS Cup at the end? - Toby Canham

Four weeks into the 2013 MLS season, and it's time to do an initial stock-taking. Taking literally a handful of minutes of my valuable time, and relying partially on empirical data while largely being propped up by my subjective impressions, the following is the first incarnation of the the 86 Forever Power Ranking. Do the Caps rate too highly? Too low? Maybe about right? Or do you even care since you burned your Chicago Fire kit last weekend?

1
MON

Canadian favouritism? No way! I hate Montreal with a passion - but mostly because of their hockey team. At 4-0, and atop the standings with 12 points, they're the surprise of the league so far.

2 LAG

They're the only other team in MLS yet to taste defeat in 2013. Should have put the boots to 10-man Colorado, but only scored once. Their draw with Chivas USA sees them fall to second place.

3 HOU

Only one minute and a dubious call away from being undefeated in league play. Full value for their wins over D.C. United and Vancouver, Kinnear's side is a perennial challenger for the league title.

4 SJE

Considering half the team's on the injury list, including Gordon and Lenhart, who combined for 23 goals last year, the 'Quakes are holding their own. International callups haven't helped either.

5 FCD

Atop the Western Conference at the moment at 3-1. Might have placed a slot higher, except for their humbling at the hands of Chivas, and a lackluster outing against Colorado to start the season.

6 CLB

Barely missed the playoffs last year, but intent on making the show this time around. A 2-1-1 record, including a draw with San Jose puts them in 5th place overall while Eddie Gaven gets healthy again.

7 VAN

Made serious moves in the off-season to upgrade their talent. Now, they just have to put it together on the pitch. Beat two teams they were supposed to, and lost by one to a very good Houston side.

8 CHV

Yes, they're second in the West, but only thanks to an easy 3 points off the dismal Chicago Fire. Were thumped 3-0 by Columbus, and thus get placed below the Whitecaps in the rankings.

9 DCU

Heading up the middle of the pack, DCU's at 1-2-1, right about where you'd expect. But with only two goals in four matches, they'll drop through the order unless they can ignite some scoring.

10 RSL

6th in the West, just behind Vancouver. They're also 1-2-1, but have faced some tough competition in San Jose, Dallas, and D.C. Based on their opening day win over SJ, they could rank higher.

11 SKC

What a difference a year makes. At 1-1-2, they're seriously off their pace from last year. Consecutive 0-0 draws with bottom feeders New England and Chicago haven't helped their cause any.

12 POR

Caleb Porter's side is in a rebuilding phase, one where they're better on paper than on the pitch. Twice they've come back to tie with late goals, but draws with NY and Seattle are mediocre results.

13 PHI

Don't be fooled by the Union's 4th place in the East. Two wins came off a pair of much weaker teams. Until they can beat someone decent, they're the last of the mid-table teams.

14 TOR

A team in shambles to start the season. Guys were flying in from Timbuktu last second so that they could field a team. Earnshaw's bagged three in his last two matches. TFC's on the move.

15 SEA

The Sounders are performing well in the CCL, but thus far it's a different story in MLS. With no wins, two losses and a draw, the Sounders have managed only 1 goal on just 10 SOG over three matches.

16 NER

The Revs are limping along without their top attacking threat Saer Sene, who's finally resumed training after an ACL injury last fall. Just 5 shots on goal in three matches so far, lowest in the league.

17 NRB

New York are victims of a a tough schedule, opening with two of their four matches vs top-5 teams. They need not to blow leads in the 2nd half, and for Robles to keep standing on his head.

18 COL

Perennial mid-table finishers, Colorado is on a downward slide since finishing 5th in the west in 2011. Pickens is out with a fractured arm, Buddle getting over knee and groin issues.

19 CHI

This side is an out-of-control dumpster fire ...without the fire. Where to begin? With a GD of -8 after four matches, I suppose defense would be a good start. Arne Friedrichs is sorely missed.

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