MLS Team of the Week: Dempsey not slowing down

The Seattle Sounders playmaker made Goal's MLS XI for the third straight week after notching two assists in a 2-1 win over Chivas USA.
Clint Dempsey didn't score this week, but his influence still proved decisive.

After recording a hat trick against Portland two weeks ago and a brace at FC Dallas last weekend, Dempsey notched two assists — including the under-pressure feed on Obafemi Martins' late winner — as the Seattle Sounders grabbed a 2-1 victory over Chivas USA. As a result, Dempsey for the third straight week has been named to the MLS Team of the Week as voted by Goal USA staff.

In goal for this week's squad is Nick Rimando, who returned from a two-week injury absence and came up big late to close out Real Salt Lake's 1-0 win over Portland. In front of Rimando are two center backs who got the job done at both ends: Aurelien Collin, who scored in Sporting Kansas City's 4-0 win over Montreal, and Matt Hedges, who used his head to record a goal and an assist in Dallas' 2-1 defeat of Toronto.

Steven Beitashour gets the nod at right back after a solid performance — including the troubling long ball that created Darren Mattocks' strike — in the Vancouver Whitecaps' 2-2 draw with LA. Stepping in at left back is Roy Miller, who teed up Thierry Henry's opener in a 2-1 win against Philadelphia with a smart give-and-go, followed by a precise pass from the end line.

At the pivot of our diamond midfield is the Columbus Crew's Wil Trapp. In addition to competing 70 of 78 passes, the 21-year-old set up the late equalizer by stripping Fabian Espindola, carrying the ball 40 yards upfield, then spraying it to the flank for Hector Jimenez to connect with before scoring.

He is joined in midfield by RSL's Ned Grabavoy, who capped a fine performance on the ball with the 78th-minute winner against Portland. The versatile Eric Alexander makes the cut as well after bagging two assists while playing out of position on the left flank versus Philadelphia.

In front of Dempsey up top is Dom Dwyer, who poached a pair of late goals in SKC's thrashing of Montreal. Darren Mattocks is his forward partner after scoring an opportunistic equalizer for Vancouver, then assisting Kekuta Manneh's late strike to again draw the Whitecaps level.

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