There were 35 goals scored in the nine MLS matches this weekend, with three teams netting five. We look at five key things we took away from this weeks action.
1. What a weekend for rookies.
Three rookies stood out this week and all got on the scoresheet. Harry Shipp got off the mark in MLS, and did so in style as he netted three against New York on Saturday night. Shipp has been brilliant and stood out once more, with a hat-trick and an assist in Chicago’s 5-4 win against the Red Bulls.
Patrick Mullins had another good weekend, and got his second goal of the season in New Englands 5-0 thumping of Seattle. The striker also netted in last week’s 2-1 win at Toronto and is certainly making the Revs attack a more threatening proposition. His direct style of play allows those in behind to find space around the box, and Diego Fagundez and Teal Bunbury certainly did that against the Sounders.
And finally, Mark Sherrod got his first MLS goals as Houston lost 5-2 to Real Salt Lake on Sunday night. The 23-year-old lead the attack for the Dynamo in place of Will Bruin who missed out with a knee injury. Sherrod made his mark however, with his two goals and was evidently delighted to get off the mark, but he and his Houston teammates will be disappointed by the heavy defeat.
2. Hat-tricks are fun.
There were three hat-tricks this weekend as defences didn’t fancy turning up for the majority of games. The aforementioned Harry Shipp, as well as Bradley Wright-Phillips and Javier Morales all got three goals. There were two in the 5-4 thriller between New York and Chicago, the first time there has been two hat-tricks in a single game in MLS history.
Javier Morales was in fine form for Salt Lake, and he didn’t waste any time getting started, as he netted after just 15 seconds; the fourth fastest goal in MLS history. Morales completed his hat-trick from the penalty spot in the 88th minute, and also got an assist in a dominant performance.
3. The Sounders are not unbeatable.
The Sounders were humiliated in New England as the Revolution won 5-0, preventing Seattle from making it six-wins in a row. They had also scored at least once in every game prior to Sundays match, and the shut-out will concern some fans who are dreaming of an MLS Cup win already. New England were tactically perfect against Seattle, they contained their attack and just countered them over and over, and it will be interesting to see if more teams adopt the same approach now.
4. Martin Chavez makes Colorado pay for their trade.
Colorado traded away Martin Chavez to Chivas USA last week, and clearly didn’t look ahead to the fact that they were playing Chivas just days later. The Honduran came on just before the hour mark in Colorado, and made some start to his Chivas career.
He scored twice against his former team to help Chivas to a 3-1 win, their first win since the opening day of the season back in March. Chavez finished nicely on two occasions, and his goals will be a welcome boost to the side, as they have been relying on Erik Torres too heavily.
5. Columbus still can’t win, or even score.
Vancouver Whitecaps are the latest side to beat the Columbus Crew, and their form is pretty awful now. Columbus are not playing well. After winning their first three games of the season, they haven’t won since March, and have now lost three on the bounce. The Crew haven’t scored in their last three and only have three goals in their past seven games. It’s concerning for Columbus and they can’t come up with an alternative game plan as Federico Higuain is being marked out of games by opponents now.
They travel to Portland at the weekend in a game between two sides desperate for a win, and will hope they can finally get three points on the board.