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The Mane Land MLS Power Rankings: Week 35

Sporting Kansas City pulled off two huge wins to put the top spot in the West in its sights.

MLS: Sporting KC at FC Dallas Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

There were plenty of thrills and upsets in Week 34 as the penultimate set of matches around the league set up a dramatic Decision Day. Only four teams are left with their postseason hopes hanging in the balance, but the Supporters’ Shield, first-round byes, and home-field advantage in the opening round of fixtures are all on the line.

Ahead of Decision Day, check out where all of the teams stand in our Power Rankings.

1. New York Red Bulls (Last Week: 1)

Bradley Wright-Phillips didn’t have to take a shot for the Red Bulls to secure an important victory over the Philadelphia Union. Ted Unkel awarded a penalty to the away side and Kaku put it home to give New York a great chance to reclaim the Supporters’ Shield on Decision Day.

2. Sporting Kansas City (Last Week: 6)

Week 34 was just what SKC needed. The offense showed up in a big way, scoring seven goals over its two matches. After a 4-1 thrashing of Vancouver, the biggest result came against FC Dallas as SKC blanked the Hoops, 3-0 on the road, to take the inside track for the West’s top spot.

3. Seattle Sounders (Last Week: 2)

It wasn’t easy, but Seattle kept rolling and defeated Orlando City and the Houston Dynamo by one goal each. The goals were flowing for the Sounders, but the normally stout defense was a bit less stout than normal. Still, Seattle is in position to welcome Portland to CenturyLink Field in the first round.

4. Atlanta United (Last Week: 3)

Atlanta nearly let slip its advantage in the Supporters’ Shield, needing an own goal to down Chicago, 2-1. With word that Tata Martino is officially leaving at the end of the 2018 campaign and Miguel Almiron still out with injury, Decision Day against Toronto could get interesting.

5. Philadelphia Union (Last Week: 5)

The Union are clinging to a postseason home match following a loss to the Red Bulls. Only ahead of D.C. United for the chance to host in the first round on a tiebreaker, Philadelphia’s Decision Day match-up against New York City FC became huge for playoff implications.

6. D.C. United (Last Week: 8)

D.C. made easy work of two of 2017’s Eastern Conference contenders in the span of a week. Wayne Rooney scored three of United’s four goals as the Black and Red defeated both Toronto and NYCFC. D.C. has come a long way from dead last in the East, with a home playoff match now in the team’s sights.

7. FC Dallas (Last Week: 4)

Everything is bigger in Texas, including disappointment after a 3-0 loss to SKC. Dallas had an opportunity to retake pole position in the Western Conference and instead was soundly beaten and tumbled down to third in the conference, in danger of missing out on the coveted first-round bye.

8. Portland Timbers (Last Week: 7)

The Timbers thumped Real Salt Lake to book their ticket to the playoffs. Sebastian Blanco, Larrys Mabiala, and Diego Chara all got in on the action with Diego Valeri pulling the strings like always. More importantly, the win gave Portland an outside chance to leapfrog their hated rivals Seattle for a home match on Decision Day.

9. Los Angeles FC (Last Week: 9)

Bob Bradley broke a few of his own records for an expansion team in Week 33 and could give his team an extra week to prepare if LAFC can get the job done on Decision Day. A 2-2 draw with Vancouver wasn’t ideal, but the Wings still sit second in the West.

10. LA Galaxy (Last Week: 10)

Zlatan Ibrahimovic said he would put on a show and he delivered. The Swede’s goal and assist were enough for the Galaxy to see off Minnesota United and keep LA in the hunt for the final playoff spot in the West.

11. Montreal Impact (Last Week: 13)

Montreal was handed a boost with Columbus dropping all three points, and held up its own end by defeating arch-rivals Toronto. Ignacio Piatti’s brace sealed the deal for the Impact, who are now a win away from potentially jumping into the playoffs.

12. Vancouver Whitecaps (Last Week: 11)

The Caps were ripped to shreds against SKC but managed to regain some dignity with a solid performance and result against LAFC. Vancouver may be officially eliminated, but it kept things interesting at the top of the West table with a dramatic, come-from-behind 2-2 draw.

13. Columbus Crew (Last Week: 12)

It was tough sledding for the Crew in a must-win match to secure a playoff spot. Federico Higuain gave Columbus the lead from a superb free kick, but the Crew defense let the rest of the team down by surrendering two penalties in the second half. Columbus’ playoff hopes now hang in the balance on Decision Day.

14. Real Salt Lake (Last Week: 15)

RSL will have to watch from home in Week 35 with just a point lead on the Galaxy after a disappointing rout at the hands of the Timbers. Still, Salt Lake blasted the New England Revolution,4-1, to give the club a chance to survive and advance.

15. New York City FC (Last Week: 14)

It was not a great day for NYCFC defenders. Wayne Rooney and Luciano Acosta carved the Pigeons to ribbons en route to a 3-1 NYCFC loss. Even though David Villa and company are a lock for the playoffs, they’re favorites to get bounced in the first round. NYCFC has just two wins in the last three months.

16. Chicago Fire (Last Week: 17)

Chicago nearly got a result out of Atlanta. Unfortunately for the Fire, a quick equalizer was almost instantaneously wiped away by an own goal. The Men in Red survived most of the match, but in the end it was a fruitless effort.

17. Toronto FC (Last Week: 16)

It was a rough week for the Reds, who failed to score a goal in either of their matches as Jozy Altidore remains sidelined. Both games came on the road, but the most demoralizing for Toronto might be the 2-0 loss in Montreal. With a chance to dent their rivals’ playoff hopes, the Reds went limp.

18. Houston Dynamo (Last Week: 20)

The Dynamo fought hard in Seattle but came up short of a result. Houston has just two wins since the beginning of July and, after a fantastic 2017 season, the Dynamo have fallen hard.

19. Minnesota United (Last Week: 18)

A huge crowd came out to watch the Loons lose to Zlatan and the Galaxy. Minnesota was routed well before Angelo Rodriguez got United on the board in the second half and the Loons have now lost three straight.

20. New England Revolution (Last Week: 19)

Already eliminated, the Revs wilted against RSL. Salt Lake consistently got in behind the defense, scoring four in the first 50 minutes. Kelyn Rowe managed to nab a consolation goal but at that point the match was out of reach.

21. Orlando City (Last Week: 22)

Orlando put together three good halves of soccer over Week 34, playing the red-hot Sounders close in a 2-1 loss before following it up on Sunday by throwing a wrench into the playoff picture, defeating Columbus for the Lions’ first win since early July.

22. San Jose Earthquakes (Last Week: 21)

It was a 0-0 draw in a match of MLS “heavyweights,” San Jose and the Colorado Rapids. Chris Wondolowski was denied a goal that would have equaled him with Landon Donovan for the league record for goals in the regular season and will need a Decision Day brace to break the record in 2018.

23. Colorado Rapids (Last Week: 23)

The Rapids did Rapid things, playing to a 0-0 draw in San Jose. With Orlando’s victory, Colorado sunk to second-to-last in the league.