Two of the hottest teams in MLS will wrap up this weekend's slate of games when the Vancouver Whitecaps play host to the New England Revolution on Sunday night.
Both the Revolution (6-5-5, 23 points) and Whitecaps (6-8-2, 20 points) have overcome slow starts to the season. They each have 16 points over their past eight games, tied for second-most in the league in that span.
New England is unbeaten in its past eight (4-0-4) despite a revolving door up front.
Striker Adam Buksa left on a transfer to France's RC Lens earlier this month, after the departure of winger Tajon Buchanan to Belgium's Club Brugge last winter.
But the reigning Supporters' Shield winners just keep chugging along.
"(Nearly) every game we've played without Adam, we've scored two goals," Revs coach Bruce Arena said. "Not that I'm pleased about that (transfer). I'd still rather have Adam here, but our team is scoring goals in different ways and hopefully other players pick up the slack."
New England is coming off a 2-1 victory last weekend against visiting Minnesota, with Dylan Borrero and Gustavo Bou scoring second-half goals. Reigning league MVP Carles Gil had an assist.
"Gustavo's playing the role as a big brother kind of with Dylan, and that's good to see," Arena said. "I think each game they've gotten better, and Dylan has responded quite well to the move here and dealing with MLS and our team and all that, so it's been real positive."
The Whitecaps are 5-2-1 over their past eight, including a 2-0 victory last weekend at Dallas, with Lucas Cavallini and Deiber Caicedo scoring first-half goals. Cavallini scored in the second minute and Caicedo in the 44th.
"It was huge," Whitecaps coach Vanni Sartini said of the victory. "The guys really stepped up in terms of concentration, in terms of approach. The proof of that is that we scored after like 90 seconds. And we were concentrated the entire game.
"They were pushing us, but we defended very well. So it's a clear victory against a very good team. So yeah, top (performance). Away. What can you ask for more?"
--Field Level Media