MLS Power Rankings: Portland Timbers, Orlando City shine ahead of return

New York City FC, Portland Timbers (Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images)
New York City FC, Portland Timbers (Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images) /
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MLS Power Rankings, Sporting KC
MLS Power Rankings – Sporting KC – (Photo by Roy K. Miller/ISI Photos/Getty Images). /

MLS Power Rankings: 6. Sporting Kansas City (+1)

The team that sits atop the Western Conference standings, and just a point behind the Columbus Crew in the Supporters’ Shield race are Sporting Kansas City, following a solid showing at the MLS is Back tournament.

They have twelve points from their opening five regular-season matches, after winning two of their Group D games in Orlando. They overcame Real Salt Lake and Colorado Rapids to finish top of the group, before then defeating Vancouver Whitecaps on penalties in the round of 16.

SKC lost out to Philadelphia Union in the quarterfinals at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports Complex, with their only other defeat coming in their first game of the competition against Minnesota United. They face the Loons on Friday in their return to regular-season action, with the pair occupying the top two spots in the West.

This Week’s Fixtures: @ Minnesota United (Friday 21, 7:30 pm ET)

MLS Power Rankings: 5. Minnesota United (=)

After remaining unbeaten through the group stages and making it to the semi-finals in Orlando, the Loons keep their place inside the top five on our Power Rankings ahead of the return of the regular season this week.

Minnesota came though the trickiest group on 2020 form, with three sides e the tournament having won their opening two matches of the regular season. They defeated Sporting Kansas City before drawing with Real Salt Lake and Colorado Rapids to advance from Group D.

The Loons made it through to the semi-finals after a penalty shootout victory over Columbus Crew and a four-goal riot against San Jose Earthquakes but lost out to Orlando City in the last four. They will be hoping to continue their good form as they face SKC again, with the two sides sitting in the top two positions in the Western Conference.

This Week’s Fixtures: vs. Sporting Kansas City (Friday 21, 7:30 pm ET)

MLS Power Rankings: 4. Orlando City SC (+5)

After playing so well on home soil, and making it all the way to the final of the MLS is Back tournament, Orlando City is one of the biggest movers, rising five places on our Power Rankings ahead of the return of regular-season action.

The ‘hosts’ were the surprise package of the mini-tournament, going unbeaten through their first six matches. They topped Group A after victories over Inter Miami CF and New York City FC before drawing with Philadelphia Union in their final group match.

The Lions then continued to surprise through the knockout stages, beating Montreal Impact, Los Angeles FC, and Minnesota United to reach the final. Orlando now sits 3rd in the Eastern Conference, and face Inter Miami in their return to regular-season action on Saturday, and they will be expecting to beat the league’s worst club of 2020 so far.

This Week’s Fixtures: @ Inter Miami CF (Saturday 22, 8 pm ET)