The Football Forge Power Rankings: Week 1

Everyone else does them, why shouldn't we?

There were a few upsets this week, most notably Loudoun United beating Indy Eleven, but a lot of the games went according to form. The two newbies both lost, but weren’t utterly outplayed. Overall, it was great entertaining opening weekend for the USL Championship. Here’s what the Forge thinks that did to the power rankings:

Rank Team Previous Change Record Notes
1 Phoenix Rising 2 +1 1-0-0 Scored early and often against newcomers Monterey Bay, but allowed two goals late. Made a clear opening statement.
2 Tampa Bay Rowdies 1 -1 0-0-1 Held the Legion at bay for 86 minutes but were lucky to score themselves. Potentially showed some weaknesses.
3 Pittsburgh Riverhounds 6 +3 1-0-0 Dane Kelly got goal #100 and the Hounds stomped on 10-man Memphis, who nevertheless worked hard.
4 Sacramento Republic 11 +7 1-0-0 Beating El Paso 3-1, even at home, was probably the biggest statement of the entire weekend.
5 Louisville City 3 -2 1-0-0 A 1-0 win over Atlanta is not exactly overwhelming. However, they racked up a whopping 23 shots.
6 San Antonio 4 -2 1-0-0 San Antonio were outpossessed and outshot by Detroit City but eked out the win. Another less than impressive performance.
7 Birmingham Legion 5 -2 0-0-1 The Legion outplayed Tampa everywhere but in the attack. They need to fix that quickly.
8 The Miami FC 10 +2 1-0-0 Beating the Baby Bulls 2-0 at home probably counts as the least surprising result of the week. Kyle Murphy did not open his account though.
9 San Diego Loyal 9 0 1-0-0 Lucky win? An own goal by Los Dos defender Jalen Neal 7 minutes into second half stoppage time definitely counts as lucky.
10 New Mexico United 12 +2 1-0-0 Neco Brett wasted no time scoring for his new team as they walked all over Las Vegas.
11 Colorado Springs Switchbacks 13 +2 1-0-0 Hadji Barry didn’t score, but the Switchbacks got the win anyway over the defending champions. A good start to the season.
12 El Paso Locomotive 7 -5 0-1-0 El Paso piled it on but only managed to get 1 past Republic keeper Carlos Sandana. Not the start to the campaign they were expecting.
13 Orange County 8 -5 0-1-0 Losing 2-1 in Colorado Springs was not too surprising. Nor was Cubo Torres failing to score and getting yanked after 64 minutes.
14 Rio Grande Valley Toros 16 +2 1-0-0 1 shot of 13 was all they needed to beat Oakland in a somewhat surprising result.
15 Charleston Battery 19 +4 1-0-0 The Battery had 1 shot on target all game. But that’s all they needed to get past Tulsa.
16 Hartford Athletic 17 +1 0-0-0 A bye in Week 1, a road game against Pittsburgh in Week 2. The schedulers aren’t being kind.
17 FC Tulsa 15 -2 0-1-0 16 shots, 2 on target, no goals. Hmm. Golazo-scorer Marlon comes back this week; will he repeat?
18 Memphis 901 14 -4 0-1-0 Memphis got the first of 4 red cards on Day 1. Still, they hung with Pittsburgh everywhere but on the scoreboard.
19 Detroit City 20 +1 0-1-0 Losing 1-0 in San Antonio is nothing to be ashamed of. Still finding their feet. Keeper Nate Steinwascher stopped a PK in a very good outing.
20 Loudoun United 26 +6 1-0-0 The shock result of the week. Somehow I don’t think this represents a trend, although a trip to New York could make for a really good start to the season.
21 Oakland Roots 18 -3 0-1-0 Held to just 2 shots and none on frame. A poor start for a team that many expect to impress this year.
22 Atlanta United 2 21 -1 0-1-0 For a very young team to stay in the game with Lou City despite getting cannoned for 90 minutes counts as a solid showing.
23 LA Galaxy II 25 +2 0-1-0 That own goal? It bounced off the crossbar into Jalen Neal’s stomach and back into the net. Life is cruel.
24 Monterey Bay 23 -1 0-1-0 The Union got a rude welcome to the USL Championship from Phoenix, but acquitted themselves with a couple of nice goals.
25 New York Red Bulls II 24 -1 0-1-0 New York had a 20% edge in possession but managed to do precisely nothing with it.
26 Indy Eleven 22 -4 0-1-0 Indy got thoroughly outplayed by Loudoun. A rather embarrassing start to Mark Lowry’s tenure.
27 Las Vegas Lights 27 0 0-1-0 A road game in New Mexico was a hard way to start the season, but what would count as a good way way to start for this team?
       

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