Ranking this week’s MLS games from best to worst.
1. L.A. Galaxy (1-0-0) at NYCFC (1-0-0), 5 p.m. Sunday: If the Galaxy truly are re-built, there may not be a better test than against David Villa and NYFC on a pitch that’s not suited for soccer.
2. Portland (0-1-0) at New York Red Bulls (0-0-0), 7 p.m. Saturday: Some are picking the Red Bulls to challenge Toronto in the East. I just don’t see it, but I’m often wrong. Defeating the Timbers would be a good first step and would be a huge week for them after defeating Tijuana 2-0 on the road in the CONCACAF Champions League.
3. D.C. United (0-0-1) at Atlanta United (0-1-0), 3 p.m. Sunday, ESPN: If any team knows how to take advantage of Atlanta United, it’s D.C. United, which won all three of the meetings last year. And if any player ever had anything to prove to the Five Stripes, it’s Yamil Asad, whom the team tried to retain but not at the salary that the Argentinian wanted. Atlanta United must bounce back from last week’s 4-0 horror show or alarm bells may start ringing.
4. Vancouver (1-0-0) at Houston (1-0-0), 6 p.m. Saturday: The Dynamo, particularly Alberth Elis, looked exceptional in dismantling Atlanta United 4-0 last week. Like Atlanta United, the Whitecaps aren’t particularly fast at the back. This could be another blowout.
5. Montreal (0-1-0) at Columbus (1-0-0), 1 p.m. Saturday: The weirdness in Columbus is exponentially growing, but the team is adopting an attitude similar to the Indians in the movie “Major League.” They should start the season with six points. Really curious to see the atmosphere at the stadium.
6. LAFC (1-0-0) at Real Salt Lake (0-0-1), 3:30 p.m. Saturday, Univision: The Angels looked sharp in beating Seattle last week, while Real Salt Lake, which enters the season with justified hype, wasn’t as strong in its opener.
7. Sporting KC (0-1-0) at Chicago (0-0-0), 6 p.m. Saturday: I’m not quite sure what to make of Chicago going into the season. Without David Accam, I’m curious to see how the attack will stretch defenses. Sporting KC, as it did last season, is already struggling to score.
8. Minnesota United (0-1-0) at Orlando City (0-0-1), 7:30 p.m. Saturday: The Lions didn’t play a few of their new acquisitions last week for various reasons, which is likely why they could do no better than draw with D.C. This may be the last winnable game for the Loons until May 9 when they play at LAFC. Schedule is: vs. Chicago, at Red Bulls, vs. Atlanta United, at Portland, at Seattle, vs. Houston.
9. Colorado (0-0-0) at New England (0-0-1), 1:30 p.m. Saturday:. I know it’s Week 1, but I’m struggling to find anything interesting about either of these teams.