Last season's MLS Cup finalists, Toronto FC and Seattle Sounders FC, continued their poor start to the season with their second consecutive losses in the Week 3. The rest of Major League Soccer also posed some interesting questions as the final whistle blew to end the weekend's action.
Toronto FC traveled to face the Montreal Impact after a solid showing in the CONCACAF Champions League but they could not translate that performance once league action resumed for them once again. The Impact picked up a remarkable 1-0 victory thanks to a deflected shot by Jeisson Vargas in the 41st minute that wrong-footed goalkeeper Alex Bono. Toronto went into the second half fighting for a result but could not find the telling pass or strike that would give them at least a point in the first all-Canadian match of the 2018 MLS season. Vargas almost got a second in the 70th minute but the goal was called back due to an offside flag and Jozy Altidore almost got the equalizer in stoppage time had it not been for a goal-line clearance by Michael Petrasso so Toronto succumbed to their second defeat in succession.
Toronto's inability to get a result after a Champions League game continues on and now places them at the bottom of the Eastern conference table, something that many would not have foreseen before the season began. They pushed hard in this game to get a result but Montreal worked equally as hard to get their first win of the season and arrest the slide they had started on this season.
Another team that has been affected by playing in the Champions League as been the Seattle Sounders. After an opening day loss, the Sounders are now 0-2 after losing to FC Dallas this weekend who ran riot on the Sounders. Mauro Díaz played a great through ball in the 20th minute for Michael Barrios who then squared the ball to Roland Lamah for a tap in goal. Things got worse for the Sounders in the 37th minute when Clin Dempsey was sent off after video replay showed him striking out at Jacori Hayes during the run of play. FC Dallas took advantage of the extra space afforded to them with Seattle being down to ten men and added two more goals to their impressive outing. Maxi Urruti made it two in the 58th minute and Lamah got his second of the day in the 63rd minute.
Seattle may have been short-handed due to injuries and Dempsey's sending off did not help matters but that shouldn't take away from how well FC Dallas played throughout the match. They were threatening from the very beginning and they should have had more goals had it not been for Sounders goalkeeper Stefan Frei who kept the scoreline down. Just like Toronto, Seattle have not started the season well due to their Champions League participation and the ease at which FC Dallas managed to cut through Seattle will be concerning for anyone who watched the game.
New York City FC continued their great start to the season with a 2-0 win over Eastern conference rivals, Orlando City SC. It was hard going for the home side for most of the match and it took a mental error by Orlando goalkeeper Joe Bendik for them to find the breakthrough. In the 62nd minute Bendik miskicked his clearance and Ismael Tajouri capitalized on that mistake to give the hosts the lead. A flowing attack move in the 74th minute allowed Maximiliano Moralez to score the second and secure the three points for NYCFC, keeping them at the top of the Eastern conference table.
NYCFC will look back at this win as a confidence-building one as they managed to beat a tough Orlando outfit without the services of David Villa. Moralez stepped up in the absence of Villa and was the spark that NYCFC needed to get the win. Orlando will look back at the result with disappointment as they were still in the game until that mishap which lead to the opening goal. The pass to Bendik bobbled up on him which made his clearance difficult but the goalkeeper still should have done much better given the circumstances. Orlando now only have one point from three games, something that they will look to address quickly if they want to stay in the hunt for a playoff spot.
Minnesota United FC made it two wins on the bounce with a 2-1 over the visiting Chicago Fire. The home fans were made to wait until the second half for their team to score after they failed to capitalize on their chances in the first. Ibson started off the scoring in the 55th minute when he was quickest to react after the goalkeeper saved his header and he tapped home the rebound. Chicago answered back four minutes later through Elliot Collier, who was making his first MLS start, who was also quickest to react after the goalkeeper parried a shot back into the penalty area. Sam Nicholson got the game-winning goal in the 66th minute when he nodded home at the back post after Ethan Finlay's cross found him there.
Minnesota are making strides this season compared to last. They have won two games in a row, against some fairly decent opposition and managed to get three points in this game with Kevin Molino, who is out for the season. The Fire on the other hand, did not cope well without their talisman Bastian Schweinsteiger and will be happy to see him back in the starting line up as soon as possible.
D.C. United 2 - 2 Houston: D.C. United left it very, very late to grab the equalizer against the Houston Dynamo but they will take the points wherever they can get them. The Dynamo took a quick 2-0 lead thanks to goals by Alberth Elis and Mauro Manotas in the 30th and 31st minutes but D.C. found a new gear in the second half and pulled one back in the 50th minute through Darren Mattocks. Luciano Acosta was the hero of the day when he found the second D.C. goal deep into stoppage time, giving D.C. a big comeback draw.
Atlanta 4 - 1 Vancouver: Josef Martínez has not skipped a beat this season and has started where he left off in 2017. Martínez opened the scoring in the 15th minute with a well-placed penalty. Kendall Watson was sent off for his foul that lead to the penalty and it gave Atlanta United FC another advantage over Vancouver Whitecaps FC. Aaron Maund scored an own goal in the 58th minute to put Atlanta two up and Martínez got his second two minutes later. Erik Hurtado managed to grab a consolation goal for Vancouver in the 85th minute but Martínez was the man of the hour and nabbed his hat-trick in the 88th minute.
Sporting KC 3 - 2 San Jose: Sporting Kansas City are making a habit of this big scoreline games as they managed a 3-2 win over the San Jose Earthquakes in Week 3. Ilie Sánchez started things off in the 25th minute with Sporting's first goal but San Jose answered back thanks to a 34th minute goal by Valeri Qazaishvili. Graham Zusi was next on the scoresheet with his first of the season in the 56th minute and Felipe Gutiérrez got the hosts' third of the game in the 68th minute. San Jose pushed until the very end and found their second through Chris Wondolowski in stoppage time but it wasn't enough and Sporting KC got their second win of the season.
RSL 1 - 0 NYRB: Real Salt Lake produced one of the upsets of the weekend with a 1-0 win over the New York Red Bulls. The team from Utah had been struggling so far this season but a fourth minute Albert Rusnak penalty was enough for them to topple the Red Bulls and give RSL their first win of the season.
Philadelphia 0 - 0 Columbus: The Philadelphia Union were looking to get their second win of the season against Columbus Crew SC but it wasn't to be as both teams battled it out for a 0-0 draw. Gyasi Zardes almost gave Columbus the win but he couldn't find an accurate finish to push his team ahead.
Note: The LA Galaxy, Los Angeles FC, the New England Revolution, Portland Timbers FC and the Colorado Rapids all had their bye week.