This week, Atlanta United, Real Salt Lake, and Toronto FC all landed two players in the Team of the Week. Philadelphia Union, Chicago Fire, San Jose Earthquakes, Seattle Sounders, and Columbus Crew SC all had one player feature. This week saw several spectacular performances, most notably with Atlanta’s Josef Martinez and Toronto’s Tosaint Ricketts netting scoring four goals across two games, and Andre Blake putting forth a fantastic performance in goal.
GK – Andre Blake (Philadelphia Union)
-With a performance of the Season, Andre Blake made eight saves in his stupendous effort to keep the Red Bulls at bay. The 2016 MLS Keeper of the Year showed his mettle and proved why he is still one of the best.
DF – Justen Glad (Real Salt Lake)
-Instrumental in the build-up of play in RSL’s win over the Timbers, Justen glad also put forward an admirable defensive effort, keeping the likes of Diego Valeri and the rest of the Timbers’ attack to just one goal. If Glad and the rest of the RSL team can continue to buckle down as they did against the Timbers, then they are a shoe-in for the playoffs.
DF – Brandon Vincent (Chicago Fire)
-Having scored the first goal of the Fire’s doing in Saturday’s 3-0 win over DC United, Brandon Vincent helped to build the offense against a seemingly defeated foe. DC managed less than half as many shots as the Fire thanks to superb defensive work from Vincent and the rest of the line.
DF – Kofie Sarkodie (San Jose Earthquakes)
-Having assisted the winning goal with an excellent pass, Kofie Sarkodie gave yet another example of his prowess and threat in the attacking third. Also a capable defender, Sarkodie is a complete package as a defender that would make most teams the better for his presence.
DF – Nouhou Tolo (Seattle Sounders)
-Nouhou Tolo helped the Seattle Sounders to a draw against a frustrated Dallas team that were trying their best to score a goal. Keeping Dallas at bay really helped Tolo and the rest of the Sounders defence show that they have what it takes to make a solid playoff push this season.
MF – Victor Vazquez (Toronto FC)
-With yet another goal and assist, Victor Vazquez is continuing his engine-like ways in Toronto’s midfield. A huge driving force behind their success this season, Vazquez has continually proven invaluable, and his not being present was no doubt one of the reasons for the shocking loss to the Impact.
MF – Albert Rusnak (Real Salt Lake)
-Albert Rusnak scored and assisted Jefferson Savarino’s goal in RSL’s win over the Timbers. An important midfield presence for RSL, Rusnak has performed excellently in every third of the pitch, showing drive even when having to track back into defence.
MF – Kekuta Manneh (Columbus Crew SC)
-Manneh helped the Crew to their draw with a goal and assist. Though it was a bit unfortunate to conceded such a late equalizer, the performance in attack was excellent. If things are to go well for the rest of the season, Mannah and the rest of the Crew are going to need to put in similar performances to this week’s.
MF – Yamil Asad (Atlanta United FC)
-Though not a major presence in the draw against Orlando City, Yamil Asad put up two goals and two assists in the 4-0 win over the Galaxy. Those are not numbers to baulk at, and when one has had to sit in the shadow of Josef Martinez over these last few games it’s nice to see equally amazing performances from other players in the team.
FW – Josef Martinez (Atlanta United FC)
-The man of the hour for Atlanta United, Josef Martinez has managed to score seven goals in as many days to bring Atlanta up to fourth place in the East with two games in hand. With a big hat trick to earn a draw with Orlando City, and a goal scored in the comprehensive win over the Galaxy, Martinez is sitting at 17 goals this season, only two behind the league-leading David Villa. If he can keep up this scoring form, then he is a serious contender for the top-scorer award.
FW – Tosaint Ricketts (Toronto FC)
-Stepping up to fill the goal-scoring shoes of Sebastian Giovinco and Jozy Altidore, Tosaint Ricketts certainly proved his capability in front of net, netting a brace in both games played by Toronto this week. Scoring all manner of goal, with both feet and head, he proved his capability for the future if there is a time where he needs to step up again for the team’s superstars.