2013 MLS Season, Week 5: What To Watch For

2013 MLS Season, Week 5: What To Watch For

  • Posted by Drew Epperley
  • On March 28, 2013
  • 2013 MLS Season, 2013 Week 5, Features
RSL and Seattle battle this weekend in a huge must win game for each side. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

RSL and Seattle battle this weekend in a huge must win game for each side. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

The end of March is here. Hard to believe it but we are in the final week of the first month of the 2013 MLS season. Crazy sauce.

MLS moves on after not taking a break during the FIFA window last week with another slate of eight games this weekend – all on Saturday. No Sunday games thanks to the Easter holiday.

Columbus, Chicago and D.C. United are all off this weekend too by the way. Weird scheduling but that is where MLS is at right now.

There are a couple big games this weekend on tap too. I have some items below that I’ll be keeping watch over. 

Montreal looks to make it five in a row

The Montreal Impact look to keep the streak alive as they take their show back out on the road this weekend to Kansas City. Sporting KC knows a thing or two about a hot start, last year Peter Vermes’ club busted out of the gates in a similar fashion. So far this season Sporting KC hasn’t quite lived up to the expectations that many had for them. But it is still early in the season.

This should be the biggest test to date for the Impact. Sure, the first two road games in Seattle and Portland were big tests but this is a conference rival and being five weeks into the season is actually a lot different than starting out the year. Players are more in a groove about their training and that early season look should be wearing off by now for most clubs.

The Impact just need to do what they do best – play the counter and find Marco Di Vaio slipping through the defense. SKC has shut out their last two opponents but they were up against New England and Chicago in those games, two clubs that aren’t exactly world beaters in terms of offense.

If Montreal wants to show the league how for real they are here, a big win on the road in KC will do it.

Early season panic in Seattle?

While their CCL run is going well, the Seattle Sounders regular season start hasn’t been anything to write home about. Just one point in three games is not the start that most would have expected out of Sigi Schmid’s bunch. But let’s face it, this is still a squad that can go very deep without winning a ton in March and April. The LA Galaxy proved that you really don’t have to win until June to be truly successful in this league.

But has the panic button been pushed already in Seattle? The defense is good enough to keep them going here as they’ve only given up three goals. It is the offense that has everyone concerned. Until Eddie Johnson and Obademi Martins get on the same page, along with Mauro Roslaes and Steve Zakuani, this slow offensive start could continue.

Seattle has to hit the road this weekend to face Real Salt Lake. Not exactly the place you want to go when you have a large CCL game looming the following week against Santos Laguna.

Seattle has done well in Salt Lake over the last couple of years and right now RSL is banged up. They will get most of their squad back from international duty, which helps, but Seattle needs to take it to RSL in the same manner that FC Dallas did a week ago. Relentless pressure on the wings, followed by some tough defense. Seattle can do it but they need to start showing everyone that they truly can here.

Other games:

LA Galaxy at Toronto FC – Landon Donovan is back with the Galaxy but don’t expect him in this one. Did the week off help Toronto? Time to tell if this squad can be for real this season or just a pretender.

Philadelphia Union at New York Red Bulls – A rivalry game of some sorts. Which Red Bulls team shows up for this one?

FC Dallas at New England – A bad road teams faces off against a club that struggles to score. Sounds exciting enough.

Portland Timbers at Colorado Rapids – Depth tested yet again for the Rapids, possibly this is the perfect time for Caleb Porter to sneak his first win.

San Jose Earthquakes at Houston Dynamo – Goonies never say die but neither does the Dynamo at home.

Vancouver Whitecaps at Chivas USA – Can Chivas continue their form? Vancouver’s different style of play and tough defense could pose a serious threat.