Even though only five games took place this week due to the international call-ups, the pool of talent deserving of a spot on this Team of the Week was not lacking. With a game-of-the-season performance from LA Galaxy, and an absolute goal-glut by the Revolution there were plenty of players at peak performance.
GK – Tim Melia (Sporting Kansas City)
Despite being on the losing side of a close encounter, Tim Melia gave his best performance of the season. With his defence truly to blame for the goal that was scored, Melia’s performance was spectacular. He kept an NYCFC team that was firing on all cylinders from scoring more than they did and made several key saves throughout the game.
DF – Matt Polster (Chicago Fire)
With a solid defensive performance, and assisting the game-winning goal, Matt Polster put forth an excellent performance against the Impact. His containment of opponents on the wing, couple with his impact in the opposition half helped the Fire to an important victory this week.
DF – Aaron Long (New York Red Bulls)
Aaron Long was an excellent asset for a Red Bulls team that couldn’t quite earn the win against a tenacious Dallas team. Making most of his impact in the opponent’s half, Long scored the Red Bulls second goal, and was a creative playmaker on the wing all game long.
DF – Hernan Grana (FC Dallas)
Grana put forth a performance that one has come to expect on his best days, and with him failing to find consistent form recently, this week’s performance came as a breath of fresh air. With an solid performance defensively, and in the opponents half on top of his all-important goal that sparked Dallas’ comeback, Hernan Grana easily earned a place on this Team of the Week.
DF – Johan Kappelhof (Chicago Fire)
Despite not having any direct connection to a goal in this game, Johan Kappelhof put forth a performance of the season with his connecting work along the wing. Whether it was overlapping in the final third, or providing width in both the defence and midfield, Kappelhof was an excellent asset to the Fire, and instrumental in their controlling play and ultimate victory.
MF – Romain Alessandrini (LA Galaxy)
Alessandrini notched up both an assist and a goal in the Galaxy’s dominant win over the Rapids. A break in poor form was bound to happen for the Galaxy, and with that an upturn in performance by the players, Alessandrini felt that this game and performed more expressively in the final third because of it. Feeling the ability to create and attack freely helped him to an inspiring performance deserving of a spot on the Team of the Week.
MF – Lee Nguyen (New England Revolution)
With a performance of the season, the Revs couldn’t have done it without the creative ability of Lee Nguyen. Chalking up two direct assists, and starting build-up that led to two additional goals, Nguyen put forward a class performance deserving of a place on the Team of the Week.
MF – Bastian Schweinsteiger (Chicago Fire)
With a limited impact on recent games, Bastian Schweinsteiger had a return to his form of earlier this season during the Fire’s win over the Impact. Scoring the winning goal, Schweinsteiger was more of a presence in the final third than he has been in recent games, and his creative presence was a significant help in moving play forward and creating threatening build-up in front of goal. This up-turn in performance earned him an easy place on this week’s TotW.
MF – Scott Caldwell (New England Revolution)
Chalking up an assist and making his mark in the attacking phase of play, Scott Caldwell showed that he can be relied upon to give a creative strength to the Rev’s midfield. A constant presence during the resounding victory over Orlando, Caldwell was an easy addition to this creative Team of the Week.
FW – Kei Kamara (New England Revolution)
The highlight of the Rev’s performance was certainly Kei Kamara’s hat trick. With his prowess in front of goal, Kamara notched several excellent goals to watch during a complete demolition of Orlando City. Of course, while it does help to be on the end of all the creative force that he is, his natural tendency to score good-looking goals is what makes Kamara a top MLS talent.
FW – Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy)
Scoring his first goal of the season, and notching up his second assist, one can hope that Gyasi Zardes can continue this form and help launch a successful playoff bid. If he can maintain his threat in the final third, then his linking up with the rest of the talent on the Galaxy team should make things interesting for the playoff picture come the end of the season.