It's an interesting time of the year, as some leagues are winding down — or are, in essence, already finished — while others are just getting going. Here's who's got the worst #CaseOfTheMondays after a weekend of beginnings and ending.
With all the focus on Minnesota’s rocky start, Real Salt Lake’s abysmal performances have very much flown under the radar. But when the no-win Loons — who, as someone pointed out, are on track to concede 153 goals this season as well as on track to be the worst expansion team in MLS history — topped RSL 4-2 over the weekend, their trouble was fully exposed.
RSL are currently bottom of the Western Conference table — two points behind Minnesota — after starting the season with three losses and two draws.They are the only team left in the Western Conference without a win yet. And the way they’re playing, it looks like newly appointed manager Mike Petke has a long road ahead of him before they get there.
But hey, at least they actually scored two goals? That’s a start.
At this point in the season, with this tight a race for the Champions League spots, draws just aren’t going to cut it anymore. Because of Manchester United’s 0-0 draw with West Brom and Arsenal’s 2-2 draw with Manchester City, both teams find themselves pretty solidly outside of the top 4 (MUFC in 5th, Arsenal in 6th).
For Arsenal, it marks only the second time they’ve been outside the top 5 this late in the season under Wenger. The Wenger Out crowd will likely be furious — and it will likely continue to grow. Although Manchester City is a tough team to beat, and Arsenal came back from behind twice, it ends up looking like just another string of disappointing results at a time in the league when you need to be grinding out wins.
For Manchester United, it’s just the continuation of a trend that’s been stunting them all season. Sure, they finally picked themselves out of the 6th-place spot they had occupied for over 140 days, but those fatal draws might just keep them from rising any higher. However, they’ll be feeling a little better than Arsenal this morning, as fifth will at least get them into the Europa League — if they can hold on and Arsenal keep slipping behind.
The reigning champions of the NASL have been given a wake-up call so far this season: the league might not be as much of a cake-walk for them as they’d have hoped.
In the first match they grinded out a 0-0 draw on the road, but when they returned home this weekend — to their brand new home — they were handed a tough 3-0 loss by current league-leaders Miami FC. The scoreline doesn’t flatter Miami; they handed down quite a beating.
And to make the loss sting even worse, the result marked the Cosmos’ first loss or shutout at home since 2015.
Of course, fans can be happy that they even have a team at all; as their coach said in the post-match presser, “The most important thing is the club is alive.” And they can look forward to the return of their captain Carlos Mendes, whose absence on the back line was felt intensely this weekend, and Irvin Herrera, whose return to the front line might help them get, at the very least, a shot on target — which they also haven’t had yet.
And they have a quick opportunity for revenge, as the Cosmos head to Miami for the same fixture next weekend.
Surprise, surprise: Celtic already won the Scottish Premier League. Again.
Don’t worry, though. They only did it by a respectable 25 point lead over second place Aberdeen and a +63 goal difference. All the other teams totally had a chance this year.