8 Things We Learned from MLS Week 7: SKC's Success, Rimando's Class and More

Joe TanseyFeatured ColumnistApril 20, 2014

8 Things We Learned from MLS Week 7: SKC's Success, Rimando's Class and More

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    Week 7 of play in Major League Soccer brought us a mixed bag of results with a few dull draws and some entertaining displays spread out across North America. 

    In the exciting clashes throughout the league, plenty of stars rose to the occasion and some controversial decisions were made. 

    One result from Week 7 even brought a club to the brink of panic mode before the month of April concludes.

    Continue reading for the biggest takeaways from Week 7 in Major League Soccer. 

Nick Rimando Is in a Class of His Own

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    Anyone who thinks Nick Rimando isn't the best goalkeeper in MLS must not be thinking straight. 

    Rimando once again delivered plenty of goalkeeping fireworks in a clutch situation for Real Salt Lake at home on Saturday. 

    With RSL clinging to a 1-0 lead, Rimando denied Alvas Powell and Gaston Fernandez in the final five minutes to hand the Claret and Cobalt their third win of the season. 

    In all three of those victories, Rimando has recorded a clean sheet and produced 16 saves, four of which came in Week 7. 

Everything Is Better in Argyle

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    Decked out in their black and grey argyle uniforms, Sporting Kansas City thrashed Montreal, 4-0, at Sporting Park. 

    The four-goal victory was the largest of the season for the defending MLS Cup champions, and it marked the first time since May 5, 2013, that the club scored four goals in a game. 

    Not only did the argyle jerseys bring out the best in the team, but they looked sharp as well, which means if the folks at Sporting are superstitious, we will see more of the argyle in weeks to come. 

Juan Luis Anangono Should Be Banned from Taking Penalties

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    With the match on the line in the 90th minute, the Chicago Fire relied on Juan Luis Anangono to take a penalty that was earned after New England's Kevin Alston handled a shot by Victor Pineda.

    Anangono's attempt on goal was easily saved by Bobby Shuttleworth, and because of the miss, the Fire left Toyota Park still in search of their first win.

    Had the Fire relied on someone like Mike Magee or Jeff Larentowicz, who are a combined 9-of-13 from the spot in their MLS careers, the result may have been a bit different. 

Sometimes the Referees Forget About Yellow Cards

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    The actions of referee Armando Villarreal on Saturday at PPL Park showed that referees are far from perfect. 

    Without any hesitation in the 82nd minute, Villarreal showed Houston's Kofi Sarkodie a yellow card for time wasting. 

    The booking was deserved, if it was the first bookable offense committed by Sarkodie, but the right-back already picked up a caution in the 40th minute. 

    Once Villarreal flashed the second yellow, he was bombarded by Philadelphia players, who kindly reminded him that the card was the second of the kind for Sarkodie.

    Luckily, the sending off didn't jeopardize the result of the lifeless 0-0 draw, but if it did, the decision would have been one of the main talking points of the weekend. 

San Jose Is Very Close to Entering Panic Mode

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    Of the four winless teams left in the league, the one club that seems in most danger of falling off the cliff and never returning to the playoff race is the San Jose Earthquakes. 

    The Earthquakes struggled mightily at the start of the 2013 season, and it ultimately cost them when the playoff race began to heat up. 

    The only promising sign of life from Mark Watson's side in 2014 came back in Week 2 when they drew with Real Salt Lake, 3-3, at home. 

    Ever since that match, the Earthquakes have scored just twice in three matches, which is a shocking statistic given how much attacking talent they have on their roster. 

    While it may be too early to call San Jose's clash with Chivas USA on Saturday a must-win, that is exactly what it is for the team that has scored the fewest goals in MLS with five. 

When Thierry Henry Scores at Home, the Red Bulls Are Guaranteed to Not Lose

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    The first match of Week 7 came on Wednesday at Red Bull Arena, as New York defeated Philadelphia, 2-1. 

    In the showdown of Eastern Conference rivals, Thierry Henry opened the scoring in the 57th minute after he was given an enormous amount of space to shoot by Aaron Wheeler. 

    When the final whistle blew, the Red Bulls extended their unbeaten streak to 21 games when Henry finds the back of the net at home.

    Since May 25, 2011, New York is 16-0-5 at Red Bull Arena when the Frenchman scores, per Peter Hirdt of the Elias Sports Bureau.

FC Dallas Has No Problem Scoring at Home

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    Including the two goals scored in Saturday night's triumph over Toronto FC, FC Dallas has netted a total of 12 goals in its first five home games. 

    In five games at Toyota Stadium, Oscar Pareja's side has scored at least two goals on each occasion. 

    The only team to outscore FC Dallas at home so far this season has been Seattle, who was powered by a blazing hot Clint Dempsey in Week 6. 

    Now, if only the team could record a clean sheet at home, a feat that has yet to be achieved on the home pitch in 2014. 

Clint Dempsey and Obafemi Martins Will Strike Fear in Every Opposing Defense

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    When the Seattle Sounders duo of Dempsey and Obafemi Martins line up against your favorite team this season, you should be scared to see what the final result is. 

    If you are a neutral watching Dempsey and Martins play together, you will enjoy every minute of it.

    Both players are in terrific form to start 2014, and they have shown zero signs of slowing down as the season progresses. 

    On Saturday night at the StubHub Center, the two reversed roles as the league's joint top scorer, Dempsey, assisted on the goal scored by the league's top assist man, Martins. 

    The 81st-minute strike was the second goal of the season for Martins, and it helped bring Dempsey's assist total up to three.

    In the four games the pair have played together in 2014, they have combined for seven goals and six assists. 

     

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