This week's celebrates a lot of players who maybe didn't have exceptional games so much as exceptional moments. Lining up in a 4-4-2 again this week.
GK Jeff Attinella (Real Salt Lake): There were a lot of clean sheets in MLS this week and Attinella did give up a goal, but he should have conceded a few more. Plus, unlike David Ousted who put in great work to keep Vancouver in a game that was also won late, Attinella is RSL's back-up 'keeper. He kept Toronto FC's Sebastian Giovinco at bay almost single-handed. Five saves, mostly of shots from Giovinco, kept his team ahead for much of the game. It would not have been his fault if RSL did not win this game (it took a last-minute winner to grab all three points) and he deserves a lot of credit for the fact his team was still in the match and in position to grab the win at the death.
RB Ike Opara (Sporting Kansas City): Not a right back, but that's where Opara is getting shoehorned into this lineup. Four games into the season and KC still hasn't got a goal out of someone who could reasonably be described as an attacking specialist. Who cares? Sporting Kansas City can ride Ike Opara's hot streak in front of goal until the forwards warm up. This week, Opara got his second (and KC's third) goal of the season: the winner in his team's first victory of MLS 2015 - 1-0 on the road against NYC FC. He defended vigorously also: nine interceptions, 13 clearances and two blocked shots (out of three KC managed to block in the match). A clean sheet and the winning goal is a good day's work for any defender.
CB Adailton (Chicago Fire): The Fire started Week 4 as the only team in MLS with 0 points. No longer. Adailton got on the end of a set piece to give Chicago a lead in the 37th minute, and then contributed to a defensive effort that kept Philadelphia Union from registering a single shot on target. Clean sheet, winning goal etc. etc.
CB Kendall Waston (Vancouver Whitecaps): The 'Caps had to absorb a lot of pressure from Portland Timbers this week, but did just enough to eke out another win. Waston led the backline with 10 clearances, four interceptions and three very important blocked shots.
LB Chris Tierney (New England Revolution): The Revs finally scored some goals this week (they had gone three games without a goal to start the season), and held on for the win over San Jose. The first goal was essentially a fluke (Kelyn Rowe got a very fortunate deflection), but the second (also scored by Rowe) was brought about by Tierney's unerring set-piece delivery (he was denied a goal of his own by Quakes' 'keeper David Bingham in the 14th minute) and ensuing chaos in the box. The Revs won't get very far this year if - as for Rowe's opening goal - they need freakish deflections to put the ball in the net, but they know they can rely on Tierney to create opportunities from set pieces all season long.
RM Nick DeLeon (D.C. United): One special moment in the very last minute of stoppage time conjured a goal and all three points for DC against a Galaxy team which could be forgiven for thinking it had done more than enough to secure a point.
CM Pedro Morales (Vancouver Whitecaps): Rarely is the phrase "threading the needle" quite so apt as when Vancouver's playmaker put Robert Earnshaw through on goal for the 'Caps winner (over Portland) this week with a pass that split four defenders. That pass alone is worth a place on this week's team.
CM Javier Morales (Real Salt Lake): RSL is transitioning to a new system, and the initial result appears to be the team makes soccer look a lot harder than traditionally been the case over the past few seasons. But Javier Morales is still one of the best creative players in the league, as he demonstrated with two pin-point assists this week - providing the two goals Salt Lake required for its first win of the season.
LW Mike Grella (New York Red Bulls): Will this be the second week running a Red Bull scores the goal of the week in MLS and isn't even nominated for MLS's Goal of the Week competition? Grella's first goal for RBNY was a match-winner, the 1,000th goal of all time for the club, his own first goal in a top-flight national league, and quite simply a strike he and Red Bulls fans won't forget for a long time.
FWD Bradley Wright-Phillips (New York Red Bulls): Another goal and assist for BWP, another win for RBNY - it's early days yet in MLS 2015, but we may be watching a pattern develop. For the second week in a row, BWP led his team to three points with a performance that should put him contention for another Player of the Week award. First, he produced a carbon copy of the pass that gave Lloyd Sam a goal last week. This time around, against Columbus, it won a penalty - converted by BWP. Next, he executed his coach's high-press instructions perfectly, winning the ball and sending Mike Grella through with enough time to summon the confidence for that goal.
FWD Pedro Ribeiro (Orlando City SC): Orlando was missing so many players this week it could only get 14 playersto Montreal (a full matchday squad is 18), but the shorthanded squad was bailed out of a 0-2 deficit by a goal and an assist from a Brazilian. Not that Brazilian. Kaka got a goal and an assist too, as it happened. But Ribeiro was an equal partner in the two-goals-in-two-minutes blitzkrieg that brought Orlando back to level terms in the match. Kaka certainly deserves credit for his work in Montreal. But Kaka was once considered the best player in the world. Ribeiro is just a player the Philadelphia Union didn't think worth protecting in the Expansion Draft, and he didn't look at all out of place helping a Ballon d'Or winner get his team back from two goals down to snatch a point on the road.
COACH Jesse Marsch (New York Red Bulls): A win on the road against what had looked one of the best teams in the early stages of the season to date, with yet another change to the back line and without compromising the tactical identity the new coach is trying to instill at RBNY. Yes, it was another good week for Jesse Marsch.