The Football Forge Power Rankings: Week 5

Changes galore in the rankings

For the first time this season, all 24 Championship teams were in action and overall it was a crazy week for the league. Full of entertainment though. And there is very definitely a front-runner in the season race already.

Rank Team Previous Change Record Note
1 Louisville City 1 0 4-0-0 CBS got their money’s worth in the first USLC national broadcast: a 5-3 scoreline, a Wilson Harris hat-trick (and an assist), a Jack Blake brace, a PK and an own goal. Lou City beat Indy and has scored 13 in the last 3 games. A big one in Charleston coming up on Tuesday on CBSSN.
2 Detroit City 2 0 4-0-0 Detroit stays perfect with the tight 1-0 win over North Carolina in a game with little attacking power evident from either side. But Detroit has never won on that basis anyway. A bye this week.
3 Sacramento Republic 3 0 3-0-2 Trevor Amann and Russell Cicerone each scored in the first 26 minutes and SacRep more or less cruised the rest of the way to the 2-0 win in Colorado Springs. Unbeaten and second in the West on tiebreakers. They host Tulsa this week.
4 Orange County 7 3 3-0-2 Orange County scored twice in 63 seconds to beat Memphis 2-0, largely against the run of play. OC has scored 2 goals in 4 of 5 games so far and are unbeaten and back on top of the East. A major tilt in San Antonio coming up.
5 Las Vegas Lights 16 11 3-2-0 The Lights played San Antonio’s game and beat them 1-0. The defensive play was impeccable, supported by 5 saves by Raiko Arozarena. Las Vegas has 3 straight clean sheet wins and has not conceded in 304 minutes. Off to Monterey Bay this week.
6 Charleston Battery 4 -2 2-0-3 The Battery couldn’t find a breakthrough against Rhode Island even with a 20-minute man advantage. The game ended a dreary 0-0 draw. Unbeaten but a tough week coming up: they get both halves of the LIPAFC derby.
7 Tampa Bay Rowdies 5 -2 1-0-3 The Rowdies’ attack took the week off and they relied on their defense to salvage a 0-0 draw in Pittsburgh. The team has been erratic so far this year but has yet to lose. They play Miami on Thursday.
8 San Antonio 6 -2 2-1-2 San Antonio were completely stymied by the Las Vegas defense and barely found any openings. They were outplayed and consequently went down 0-1. Struggling a bit and a big game against Orange County coming up.
9 FC Tulsa 12 3 1-1-1 Tulsa’s 3-3 draw with Phoenix was a wild affair high in entertainment value. They probably should have won, if not for some excellent goalkeeping by Rocco Rios Novo. But get rid of those garish pink kits please. A big test in Sacramento this week.
10 Hartford Athletic 8 -2 3-1-0 Hartford won 3-2 at home over Miami in a shootout, although it really wasn’t quite that close. Romario Williams missed a PK, and a stoppage time own goal kept the margin to just one goal. Riding high and getting a breather this week.
11 Monterey Bay Union 14 3 2-1-2 The Union got a late goal to beat Oakland 1-0 in a…contentious…match. They are eking out points in most of their games. They welcome Las Vegas this week but will do it without 2 players as 4 players were ejected in a post-game incident.
12 Indy Eleven 10 -2 1-3-1 It was Indy’s turn to run into the Louisville buzzsaw this week. A brace from Jack Blake and a Lou City own goal made it a respectable, but it really wasn’t anywhere near that tight. Charleston visit on Saturday.
13 Birmingham Legion 21 8 2-2-0 How often does a team go 4 games into a season and have own goals as the top scorer? Still, the Legion rebounded from going down a goal to win comprehensively 3-1 over Loudoun in its home opener. Turnaround? We’ll see next week in North Carolina perhaps.
14 New Mexico United 13 -1 3-1-1 New Mexico scored twice after the 88th minute in a wild 3-2 win over El Paso, who themselves had scored twice after the 80th minute. 3rd in the West but their only game against quality opposition was a 0-4 loss. Off this week.
15 North Carolina FC 9 -6 1-2-2 North Carolina had one shot on goal in the 0-1 loss to Detroit. Detroit had only 1 on goal too, so it counts as a close game? The winner was technically an own goal although the shot was probably on target anyway. NC gets a revived Legion next.
16 Loudoun United 11 -5 1-2-1 Loudoun took the lead early in the second half on a golazo by Abdelattif Aboukoura but then got stomped on, losing 1-3 to an angry Birmingham team. A strong start to the season seems to have ebbed. They host Memphis next though.
17 Phoenix Rising 23 6 1-3-1 Phoenix scored 3 times in the draw in Tulsa, which is 3 times their previous scoring output. And they needed 2 PKs to do it. Still not a convincing team and they were very close to losing this one too. Colorado Springs comes to town this week for a possible refresher.
18 The Miami FC 15 -3 1-3-1 Miami and Hartford combined for 37 shots and 14 on target in a game sorely lacking in good defense. That week 1 win is looking like ancient history now. Tampa Bay next.
19 Rhode Island FC 20 1 0-1-3 Rhode Island continues to struggle. Still no wins but the 0-0 draw with Charleston was an improvement, especially playing 20 minutes with only 10. They play Pittsburgh in the cellar battle this week but will do it without Conor McGlynn.
20 Pittsburgh Riverhounds 22 2 0-3-1 The good news: the Riverhounds didn’t allow a goal for the first time this season. The bad news: they didn’t score either despite having the bulk of chances against Tampa Bay. They looked better though after a week off. Up to Rhode Island next.
21 El Paso Locomotive 19 -2 0-4-1 The Locomotive blew a late lead to fall 2-3 to New Mexico in a game they really should have closed out. They are still winless but have a chance to get on the right track against Oakland this week.
22 Memphis 901 17 -5 1-3-0 Memphis had most of the attacking chances against Orange County but wasted all of them and blew it big time defensively in the second half. Three straight losses now after the week 1 win over an unprepared Las Vegas. They head to Loudoun this week.
23 Oakland Roots 18 -5 1-3-1 Three straight scoreless losses for the Roots now as they go down 0-1 to Monterey Bay. They look out of sorts to say the least. 2 key players – Baboucar Njie and Neveal Hackshaw – were red carded at the end of the match and they will play El Paso (and possibly future games) without them.
24 Colorado Springs Switchbacks 24 0 0-4-0 The Switchbacks are – well – bad. The 0-2 home loss to Sacramento was perhaps a bit closer than the score suggests, but they have just 1 goal in 4 games and have yet to record a point. They head to a slowly improving Phoenix this week.

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