The Major League Soccer regular season resumed at 6 p.m. today with the San Jose Earthquakes visiting Real Salt Lake -- both currently ahead of the Sounders in the MLS Western Conference.
Here's a game preview from the league:
* Real Salt Lake resume league play riding a seven-game undefeated streak, ending the Galaxy’s unbeaten run to start the season in a 1-0 victory on June 9. * Following a four-game unbeaten streak, the Quakes staggered into their World Cup recess by taking just one point in a three-game stretch over eight days, ending with a 2-0 loss at FC Dallas. * Both teams were in action during the break: Real Salt Lake earned a 2-0 victory in an international friendly against Costa Rica’s Puntarenas FC at Rio Tinto Stadium;the Earthquakes played Chivas USA to a scoreless draw in an exhibition match in Sacramento, winning 6-5 in a penalty shootout. * The teams are playing for the third time this season. Real Salt Lake won 3-0 in the MLS season opener for both clubs on March 27 at Buck Shaw Stadium, and the Quakes advanced in a penalty kick shootout after a 3-3 draw in a U.S. Open Cup play-in game April 14.
And a few more notes from the league in advance of everyone else getting back into action:
As the MLS season nears its halfway point, both conferences feature ties atop the standings. Real Salt Lake pulled even in the Western Conference with the LA Galaxy – despite a remarkable start – following a 1-0 win in their meeting in one of the final matches before the World Cup break. In the East, the Columbus Crew and New York Red Bulls are level with 21 points, one fewer than Real and the Galaxy.
A number of teams are riding hot – and cold – streaks coming out of the midseason break:
Who’s hot? * Real Salt Lake: 7-game unbeaten streak (6-0-1) * Toronto FC: 5-game unbeaten streak (3-0-2) * Colorado Rapids: 4-game unbeaten streak (3-0-1) * Chicago Fire: 4-game unbeaten streak (1-0-3) * D.C. United: 3-game unbeaten streak (2-0-1) * New York Red Bulls: 2-game winning streak * Marco Pappa (CHI) & Fredy Montero (SEA): back-to-back games with goals * Jamie Smith (COL) & Davy Arnaud (KC): back-to-back games with assists * Nick Rimando (RSL): 228 consecutive shutout minutes