Major League Soccer Betting Tips
Discover our tips, predictions and all the information required for your sports betting on the next American MLS match day.
Major League Soccer, or the MLS as it’s most commonly known, is the first football division in Northern America. In 2019, the 24th edition of this competition will consist of 24 teams from the US and Canada, which are divided into two conferences: Eastern and Western. During the Regular Season, which runs from March 2nd to October 16th 2019, each team will play 34 games - twice meeting each opponent from their own conference, and playing their non-conference opponents only once. The team that finishes at the top of the MLS Overall Standings at the end of the regular season will be awarded with the Supporters’ Shield, which also grants qualification to the CONCACAF Champions League.
The format of the MLS then runs in a similar way to other US sporting competitions such as the NFL or NBA - the teams that rank at the top of each conference will qualify for the MLS Playoffs, which run until the MLS Cup at the end of the overall season. The format of the MLS Playoffs has changed for this 2019 edition, as now 14 teams will qualify for the single round Playoffs at the end of the season. The seven top-ranked teams will qualify for the Playoffs, which will begin on October 19th, and the two teams that finish at the top of each conference will receive a first-round bye.
The MLS Cup Final will then be held on November 10th, between the two teams that qualify from the knockout Playoff rounds. There’s plenty of opportunity for action in this football league, which is growing in popularity amongst fans from around the world. Whether it is on the regular season, the Supporters’ Shield winner, the Playoffs or the MLS Cup - there are plenty of betting opportunities on offer on Major League Soccer, which promises many exciting games and shocks in its 2019 edition.
Major League Soccer: The Conferences
|Western Conference||Eastern Conference|
|Colorado Rapids||Atlanta United FC|
|FC Dallas||Chicago Fire|
|Houston Dynamo||FC Cincinnati|
|LA Galaxy||Columbus Crew SC|
|Los Angeles FC||D.C. United|
|Minnesota United FC||Montreal Impact|
|Portland Timbers||New England Revolution|
|Real Salt Lake||New York City FC|
|San Jose Earthquakes||New York Red Bulls|
|Seattle Sounders||Orlando City SC|
|Sporting Kansas City||Philadelphia Union|
|Vancouver Whitecaps FC||Toronto FC|
MLS: the stats to know
There are many different statistics and variables that are important to be aware of for your bets on the MLS. Perhaps the most significant of these statistics is the vast amount of goals that are scored in each game of Major League Soccer - in 2018 the average number of goals recorded per match was a whopping 3.19! This indicates that the 2019 edition of this competition is also likely to be a goal-fest, always an entertaining prospect for fans of football betting.
In light of this important statistic, it might help you to take into account the volume of goals scored per game in the MLS. For the entire 2018 season, only 18% of MLS matches ended with a scoreline of 1-0 or less, as 23% of games saw at three goals, while almost 21% of games finished with at least two goals marked on the scoreboard. With this in mind you might consider placing bets on ‘Over 1.5’ or even ‘Over 2.54’, which in 2018 came true in 84% and 63% of matches respectively - food for thought!
While we are on the subject of goals, another interesting point to note is that in 2018, both teams scored in 61% of MLS matches, an increase of 6% from the figures recorded in the previous season. A positive trend, and maybe a bet to consider for your 2019 MLS predictions.
The final important statistic to know for your bets on the MLS is that the home team does not always have the greatest advantage, with 54% of games in 2018 seeing victory for the home side. Not a bad figure, and no doubt more favourable than the recorded wins for the visiting team (25%). However, a high rate of draws were recorded in the MLS last season - 21% to be exact. Should this trend continue into 2019, it might not be a bad idea to avoid betting on the victory of one team or the other, and turn instead to other betting markets on the match of your choice - the word of the experts.
How to predict MLS Regular Season fixtures
Now that you are aware of all of the most important statistics surrounding the MLS, let's take a look at some other important factors that will impact your predictions on this US football league. As is the case in any football competition, the form of a team’s key players will always have an impact on the result a team can achieve. For the MLS in particular, as it is such a young league, the presence of experienced players can affect how a team performs. The presence of players who have transferred from Europe’s top leagues, such as Zlatan Ibrahimovic at LA Galaxy, Wayne Rooney at DC United, and now Nani at Orlando City, can give their teams extra experience on the field, and can often be the difference between two sides.
It is also important to remember that the MLS regular season runs over course of 6 months, in which teams must travel around the country to play games week-in and week-out. As a result, it is important to be aware of the possibility that a team could have accumulated fatigue when placing your bets, especially in the final months of the season.
Finally, you must also consider the stake of a match before placing your bets. If a team has already secured a Playoff spot in their conference, they may not have the same motivation to win each game that comes their way as a team that is still not certain to qualify for the final knockout stages. Teams at the top of the conference may choose to retain their energy before the Playoffs if their qualification position seems to be certain - an important factor to keep in mind.
How to predict MLS Playoffs
As we’ve said, the format for the Playoffs will change this season - the stakes are higher and there are more teams competing for a place in the MLS Cup on November 10th. With the each round of the Playoffs now consisting of only a single game, this stage of the competition will be played in true knockout format. There will be plenty of opportunities for you to bet on this stage of the competition - be it on each individual match, or on which teams will make the cut for the final round of the competition: The MLS Cup. The odds on such bets will no doubt be interesting - be sure to check them out.
American MLS 2019: our free betting tips
So finally, and what we’re sure you’ve been waiting for, to our experts predictions on the teams to watch in this MLS 2019. Obviously, you can’t write off last years MLS Cup winners Atlanta United, who claimed the title for the first time in their history. The New York Red Bulls will no doubt be in contention for this years title, after finishing top of the regular season standings and claiming the Supporters’ shield in 2018. The two Los Angeles franchises are also not to be written off - in particular LA Galaxy, who have won the MLS Cup 5 times in their history. There are plenty of teams in contention, and considering the format of this competition, the MLS will always offer exciting betting opportunities to football fans.
Who will win MLS 2019?
- Los Angeles FC - 9/2
- LA Galaxy - 5/1
- DC United - 10/1
- Toronto FC - 12/1
- Seattle Sounders - 14/1
- Atalanta United - 16/1
- New York Red Bulls - 18/1
Who will be the MLS Top Goalscorer 2019?