MLS: 3 new MLS Cup contenders based on first two weeks

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SAN JOSE, CALIFORNIA – MARCH 07: Ike Opara #3 of the Minnesota United FC is congratulated by Chase Gasper #77 after Opara scored a goal against the San Jose Earthquakes during the first half of their MLS Soccer game in the first half at Earthquakes Stadium on March 07, 2020 in San Jose, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

With a hiatus due to the coronavirus providing time to reflect, here are three new MLS Cup contenders based on the first two weeks of the season.

The Major League Soccer season is two weeks. It is a far too small a sample size to draw meaningful conclusions from, but with the entire sporting world currently on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic, there is plenty of time to reflect on the limited action we have seen.

And there are several teams that have impressed in their early outings. Four teams still have a 100% record, while others have shown surprising signs of improvement from last year. With the eventual goal to win MLS Cup, however, which teams have proven themselves to be unexpected contenders at this early stage?

Related Story: MLS: Top 3 teams ecstatic with start of season

Here are the top three teams to have thrust themself in the MLS Cup race.

WASHINGTON, DC – FEBRUARY 29: Jonathan Lewis #7 of the Colorado Rapids celebrates the goal winner during the game. The Colorado Rapids defeated D.C. Untied 2-1 during their Major League Soccer (MLS) match at Audi Field during a game between Colorado Rapids and D.C. United at Audi Field on February 29, 2020 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Jose Argueta/ISI Photos/Getty Images)

3. Colorado Rapids

There was tentative hope for the Colorado Rapids in 2020. Robin Fraser’s side ended the 2019 campaign in superb form, almost sneaking into the postseason thanks to their promising run. And after some intelligent acquisitions in the offseason, including signing three centre-halves and their lone Designed Player, that hope was only built upon.

When a team enters a season riding on hype from the previous year and the work they have conducted in the offseason, there is always a tentative nervousness that it might all come crashing down, especially when it is team like the Rapids who have routinely struggled to build truly competitive teams.

However, on this occasion, Colorado have translated off-pitch hope to success on it. They have won both of their first two games, the defence has improved markedly from last season, while Younes Namli, who will be the crucial figure of the team, has already notched his first goal of the campaign. The Rapids, then, might just be for real.

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