(Reuters) - New York City continued their recent surge as Spaniard David Villa notched two classy goals, including the late winner, in a 2-1 away win over Montreal Impact in Major League Soccer (MLS) on Saturday.
The former Spain forward sealed the three points when he curled home a low free kick in the 82nd minute, five minutes after Argentine Ignacio Piatti had levelled the scores from the penalty spot.
It was New York’s fourth win in five games, a run that has lifted them into playoff contention after a horrible stretch earlier in the season when they went 11 matches without a win.
In other action, the lowly Colorado Rapids pulled off a big upset when they beat the high-flying Vancouver Whitecaps 2-1 for just their third win this season.
Colorado took a second-minute lead through Uruguayan striker Vicente Sanchez, before the visiting Whitecaps made it 1-1 courtesy of midfielder Kekuta Manneh in the 20th minute.
But the Rapids were not to be denied and Irish international Kevin Doyle headed home the winner in the 56th minute, his first MLS goal since he joined the league in May.
The loss left Vancouver level on points at the top of the Western Conference with Seattle Sounders, who beat Eastern Conference leaders D.C. United 1-0 on Friday night.
In Texas, Dallas trounced the visiting New England Revolution 3-0 with an early goal from Argentine Mauro Díaz paving the way for a comfortable victory.
Diaz drove a low free kick under the New England wall when the line of defenders jumped into the air and it only got worse for the Revolution as a comedy of errors gifted the second Dallas goal to Colombian Fabian Castillo.
In Ohio, Columbus Crew came from behind to beat New York Red Bulls 2-1, a pair of goals from midfielder Ethan Finlay overhauling an early strike on the break from Anatole Bertrand Abang.
In other matches, the Los Angeles Galaxy trounced Toronto 4-0, thanks in no small measure to a hat-trick from Ireland striker Robbie Keane, while Real Salt Lake and Orlando City drew 1-1.
Reporting by Andrew Both in Cary, North Carolina, editing by Nick Mulvenney