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MLS Sunday: Everything you need to know about Matchweek 19

Philadelphia remember how to score, Seattle forget how to score, Miami gift Orlando a win, LAFC keep rolling, New Jersey stay on top of the East

MLS: Portland Timbers at Seattle Sounders FC
Shouting at the ref totally helps.
Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Matchweek 19 had its share of shutouts (four), draws (four), away wins (five), and red cards (six): LAFC battled LA Galaxy for an el Traffico win that keep them in the lead for the Supporters’ Shield, while New Jersey manage a draw to stay on top of the Eastern Conference. New York City FC earned their first win under interim head coach Nick Cushing by beating a New England Revolution that coulda, shoulda, woulda won if it wasn't for the field at Yankee Stadium, and the sun, and the ref, and the rules. Domage.

Top Games

Philadelphia Union 7 - 0 DC United
Any MLS team in need of a pick-me-up should play DC United: Philadelphia scored a club-record seven goals against hapless United behind a Julian Carranza hat trick. Despite dominating the game Philadelphia had only 55% possession — the Union simply don’t like to keep the ball. They also don't like to score: Those seven goals they scored on Friday count for nearly 25% of the team’s total this season. Still, they’re having a good year. Philadelphia are now in second place in the Eastern Conference, level on points with New Jersey and with one game in hand.

LAFC 3 - 2 LA Galaxy
Gareth Bale was in the strands to watch his new club outplay their crosstown rivals. LAto watch his new club outplay their crosstown rivals. LAFC opened the scoring in the 17th minute when Jose Cifuentes nodded in a corner, and it remained tight until the final whistle. Tempers flared, fouls were called, cards were brandished, and when the dust settled LAFC outperformed their 1.54 xG to win the latest installation of el Traffico. LA Galaxy might have been the better team on Friday, but that and a $1.25 will get you a donut at Winchell’s.

Seattle Sounders 0 - 3 Portland Timbers
Seattle might have the most complete squad in MLS, and their insufferable fans might believe that the team’s CONCACAF Champions League win make them one of the five best cubs on planet Earth, but they were given a bare-bottom spanking by their number-one rivals when Portland embarrassed them at home yesterday. Seattle didn’t look like Seattle: Lifeless, static, incoherent. For their part, Portland looked like the Portland that made it to the MLS Cup Final last year: The find a way to win. Portland went up 1-0 when Jaroslaw Niezgoda scored in the 24th minute, but they didn’t put the game away until well after Seattle’s Jackson Ragen was shown red in the 46th minute. Santiago Moreno converted a penalty for Portland in the 82nd minute, then Dairon Asprilla scored on a Niezgoda assist in the 85th minute to rub Seattle’s nose in it.

Orlando City 1 - 0 Inter Miami
Every once in a while Inter Miami looks almost like a good team, one capable of winning games behind the quality of their play. Then they put in a performance like this one: The own-goal scored by manager Phil Neville’s squad was all Orlando needed to walk away with three points after a sweaty, steamy game played in the sub-tropical clime at DRV PNK Stadium in Fort Lauderdale. Our sympathies to those who watched a game in which each side managed just one shot on goal. Designated Player Gonzalo Higuaín, aka the Most Interesting Bench Warmer in the World, didn't make the lineup card after playing in last weekend’s draw with FC Dallas. Can’t wait to see what Miami does when they take the field against Barcelona in a friendly on July 19.

FC Cincinnati 1 - 1 New Jersey Red Bulls
New Jersey did just enough to earn a point in Cincinnati and remain in first place in the Eastern Conference. Cincinnati’s Brandon Vazquez found the back of the net in the 20th minute, but New Jersey’s Lewis Morgan converted a penalty in the 29th minute to draw even. That’s where the score remained despite a red card shown to Cincinnati’s Allan Cruz in the 58th minute, and another was shown to Luciano Acosta in the 93rd minute just for fun.

Goal of the Week

Call us biased (yet again), but Gabriel Pereira’s goal for NYCFC was a work of art: The right-winger dispossessed New England, passed to Taty Castellanos, retrieved his deflected shot, then broke the ankles of the entire defense and calmly slotted home what proved to be the game-winner.


Friday, July 8

Philadelphia Union 7 - 0 DC United

LAFC 3 - 2 LA Galaxy

Vancouver Whitecaps 1 - 3 Minnesota United

Saturday, July 9

NYCFC 4 - 2 New England Revolution

Seattle Sounders 0 - 3 Portland Timbers

FC Charlotte 4 - 1 Nashville SC

Atlanta United 0 - 3 Austin FC

FC Cincinnati 1 - 1 New Jersey Red Bulls

Toronto 2 - 2 San Jose Earthquakes

CF Montréal 1 - 2 Sporting KC

Chicago Fire 2 - 3 Columbus Crew

Houston Dynamo 2 - 2 FC Dallas

Real Salt Lake 2 - 2 Colorado Rapids

Orlando City 1 - 0 Inter Miami