MLS roundup: Cincinnati and Philadelphia extend winning streaks
Eastern Conference leaders FC Cincinnati made it five wins in a row with a 1-0 win over the Chicago Fire in Major League Soccer on Saturday while Julian Carranza scored twice as the Philadelphia Union beat Montreal 3-0.
Wayne Rooney's D.C. United ruined Javier Morales' debut as Inter Miami coach with a 2-1 win in South Florida while the New York Red Bulls suffered a 3-0 loss at home to Orlando.
Cincinnati are the form team in MLS at the moment with 12 wins and just one defeat from their opening 16 games, but they had to graft for the three points against Chicago.
It took a moment of individual skill from Luciano Acosta to decide the game, seven minutes from the end, when the Argentine brought down a deep ball into the box from Santiago Arias and squeezed a shot under Fire keeper Spencer Richey.
Cincy are the first team in MLS history to take 39 points in their first 16 games of a season, since the end of match-deciding shoot-outs in 1999 and are eight points clear of second placed Nashville.
Nashville, unbeaten in eight, beat Dallas 2-1 thanks to Hany Mukhtar's 77th minute winner in Texas.
Philadelphia's Argentine striker Carranza took his tally for the season to nine goals as the Union, last season's beaten finalists, begin to look like contenders again with their fourth straight win.
Carranza opened the scoring, cutting in from the left and firing a right-foot effort from outside the box into the far, bottom corner.
The forward then had a hand in Philly's second, his shot from a tight angle parried by Montreal keeper James Pantemis only for Mikael Uhre to pounce to double the lead.
Carranza wrapped up the win in the 61st minute when his shot took two deflections and looped into the net to make it 3-0.
Morales took over as Miami's interim coach on Thursday following the dismissal of Phil Neville, but his debut took a swift turn for the worst when defender Kamal Miller was sent off in the eighth minute.
Miller brought down D.C. striker Christian Benteke as he bore down on goal and although he was initially shown the yellow card, the red was produced by the referee after a VAR review.
Morales' team battled well with 10 men, with three injuries hardly helping the cause, but their defence was finally breached in the 76th minute when Donovan Pines hit the post from close range and after a tussle with keeper Drake Callender bundled the ball home.
Belgium international Benteke made it 2-0, with a left-foot finish after he broke free of the Miami back line but the home side restored some late hope when substitute Ian Fray scored his first league goal in stoppage time.
The 11th loss of the campaign leaves Inter still rooted to the bottom of the East.
St. Louis go top
The Pacific North West derby between the Seattle Sounders and the Portland Timbers ended goalless which allowed St.Louis City to take over at the top of the West.
St.Louis beat Houston 3-0 thanks to an Eduard Loewen penalty a goal from Tomas Ostrak and another spot-kick from Nicholas Gioacchini.
Facundo Torres scored twice, his second from the penalty spot, as Orlando ran to a 3-0 win at New York Red Bulls after Ivan Angulo had opened the scoring in the 18th minute.
Christian Ramirez scored twice for the Columbus Crew in their weather-delayed 4-2 win over Charlotte.
The Crew were 3-0 up after goals from Ramirez, Max Arften and the impressive Cucho Hernandez before three goals in the space of three minutes.
Polish forward Karol Swiderski struck for Charlotte and then moments later Justin Meram added a second for the visitors.
A minute later Ramirez restored the Crew's two goal cushion with a firm drive from the edge of the box.
Italian striker Lorenzo Insigne looked to have given Toronto a much-needed win at Minnesota before Kervin Arriaga's deflected shot in the 89th earned Adrian Heath's team a point.