By Guillermo O'Rourke
"Power Rankings, largely based on an accumulation of data."
(Ed. Note: We know you, our cherished Golden Boys and Girls, rely on the thoughtful, objective insight and commentary we provide in the form of our weekly Power Rankings. Unfortunately, not everyone sees it the same way and last week, we received a cease and desist order from a certain U.S. professional sporting league office.
While we stand by our, uh, reporting and firmly believe this order to be frivolous and having no legal standing, out of advice from our counsel, we voluntarily held last week's edition of the Power Rankings. Per that same advice, we must withold the name(s) of our accuser(s), so for any future references, we'll use the pseudonym "Dan Gorber."
Last week notwithstanding, we will be undeterred in our dogged pursuit of the Truth, no matter the levers of power we may cross doing so. We remain 💯-percent committed to providing you with the same hard-hitting, deeply-sourced, unbiased coverage of Columbus Crew SC, MLS and the sporting world at large --along with dated pop culture references and fart jokes -- that you've come to expect. To put it another way: Lord help us, we're back on our bullshit.)
22. Toronto FC
The 2016 MLS Cup losers are coming off a 2-2 stalemate with Don Garber Darling Atlanta United last weekend. The poster boys for the league's "F*ck it, why not?" philosophy toward its own salary rules have draws in four of five matches so far this season and their sole win came against the pre-Tony Tchani Vancouver Whitecaps, so it doesn't even really count.
21. Dom Oduro
Fast dude with busted hair who's been traded six times and has the diet of a second grader Dom Oduro fired some shots at our esteemed city. Don't worry Dom, just two more trades to and you can get a free medium one-topping from Papa John's!
20. Chicago (sic) Fire
The Fire managed to dive their way to three points against an injury-riddled Crew SC team last Saturday in Bridgeview. The following night, we assume, the team boarded an express flight to Louisville and cheered while that doctor got "re-acommodated."
19. Kitchen Knives
18. The Rest of the Soccer World Catching On
Oh please, tell us more about how teams are starting to use their fullbacks in the attack.
17. Fightin' Snowmen
Kevin Kievet's squad dropped a cool 81 points to pace the last round. The Fightin' Snowmen (366) have put 33 points between themselves and second-place Club Toledo in the young GCGAG Fantasy League season. Blast FC (220), TitiesNBeer (216) and Ookie Cookies (177) would be sitting in the drop zone.
16. Potential USMNT Drama
Sporting Kansas City's Dom Leroux-Dwyer became an official U.S. citizen last month and if reports are to be believed, a call up from Bruce Arena could be in short order. We can hardly fault the Cuckfield, England-born attacker for wanting to follow in the footsteps of his much more accomplished wife, but Mr. Sydney Leroux probably didn't help his cause much when he drew the ire of Tim Howard -- the USMNT's first-choice keeper for life, apparently -- after SKC's victory over Colorado last weekend.
15. North American Group Soccer Hosting Agreement
So America and our northern and southern neighbors put in a group bid to host the 2026 World Cup. For the sake of argument, we'll presume that FIFA is still a thing after the 2018 tournament in Russia, where we've got [state-sponsored] hooligan brawls to look forward to, and the 2022 tournament in Qatar, where, you know, people are literally dying during construction for stupid, exorbitant stadiums in the middle of the desert. The good ol' US of A gets all the good games and Canada appears to be pulling out all the stops (real grass)! Oh, we were just reminded of another reason to hate FIFA.
14. Mama Manneh's Movie Picks
Mom asked me to watch lethal weapon... now gooing through the series 👌🏿— Kekuta Manneh (@kekuta16) April 9, 2017
Fingers crossed "Roadhouse" is next!
13. Advanced Simulations
After running more than 10,000 simulations -- you should really check out the director's cut -- the latest GCGBAG FIFA Scouting Report is out. Let's just say a certain "Lethal Weapon" viewer is in line for a big-time debut performance for the Black and Gold.
12. Philadelphia Union Supporters
Some of you may be under the impression that we are predisposed against other MLS clubs' supporters on account of their support for other MLS clubs. Well, that's mostly true, but real recognize real and making fun of Portland and their stupid log is a National Service that should be celebrated on all occasions.
10. Footy McFooty Face
We knew The Man would never let it happen. But we wanted so much to believe. Footy McFooty Face was just too beautiful for this world.
9. The Lads (⤵️)
The Lads were so upped going into last weekend. So upped. But alas, Chicago's (sic) propensity for going to ground dragged The Lads down as well. Fortunately, our sources assure us The Lads are going to be upped like they've never been upped before Saturday at MAPFRE Stadium.
8. Cheeky Luis Silva
Forget one moment that, given that the league postponed a New England match because they heard it was going to be cold, Real Salt Lake and Vancouver Whitecaps had no business playing last weekend. We love whiteout games because of moments like this.
There's no rule that says a dog can't play soccer! Oh God, now we're stuck in the Animal Athlete Loop!
6. The People's Save Of The Week
Chicago (sic) spent millions to bring in Bastian Schweinsteiger to capitalize on free kick opportunities like the one presented in 76th minute last Saturday in Toyota Park. Columbus, meanwhile, acquired Zack Steffen, a T-800 android originally sent back in time to kill the unborn leader of the human resistance, and reprogrammed him eliminate any perceived threat to victory on the footy pitch. Who will triumph!?
5. Giving Forward
Much love to all the good folks who helped out last weekend!
April 13 was the 21st anniversary of the first ever game in Columbus Crew SC, nee The Columbus Crew, history. It was, as we all remember and nonetheless appreciate The Dispatch for commemorating, a 4-0 shit-pumping of D.C. United at The 'Shoe -- an entree befitting The World's Greatest Team. Seriously, check out the photo gallery they put together. It's Golden.
3. Pint-size Ultras
This week on GCGBAG's "Hunt for the Golden Crewzer" we have a touching story about the bond between a father and his son and their diehard support of Crew SC. That's right, we start 'em early here in Columbus.
We live in a pretty messed up world. But remember: the good folks way out-number the assholes. Shout out to all the Dortmund fans -- our Golden Jungen und Mädchen -- who hosted visiting Monaco fans Tuesday night after the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinal was postponed. UEFA, which forced BvB to play the day after their freaking bus was bombed, can get bent.
1. Columbus Crew SC
The World's Greatest Team still sits atop the Eastern Conference standings and should be bouyed by the return of Pipa, Harrison Afful and potentially Jonathan Mensah. Now take into account that Crew SC is 12-10-6 all-time vs. their Trillium Cup rivals (that contrived enough for you?) and 8-3-4 within the friendly confines of the Tiny Demon Fortress.