The 2018 MLS schedule was released on Thursday and fans can start planning their weekends for this upcoming season.
In the case of those clubs facing the toughest schedules of 2018, they can use all the help they can get from supporters in the stands.The MLS schedule is broken up pretty simply: Every team plays conference opponents either two or three times and they face out-of-conference teams just once. So not every schedule is made the same, making the strength of schedule calculation all the more interesting.
Another factor that throws a wrench into this calculation is that there will be a new team in MLS this year. Though LAFC are on every team's schedule, their effect on this number could not be calculated
Below you'll find the complete table, calculated by taking the 2017 average points per game at home and on the road for each team's opponent.
Who has the toughest challenge in 2018? 🤔— Major League Soccer (@MLS) January 5, 2018
Dig in to the Strength of Schedule Rankings: https://t.co/zMZWMn3rN0pic.twitter.com/LDrU0ZXCx1
The differences between many of the schedules are negligible and this calculation cannot account for differences in a team's performance from 2017 to 2018, but LAFC will be heading into 2018 with what appears to be the easiest schedule. This could be ascribed to the fact that the only team they will be playing three times is the LA Galaxy, who finished 2017 with the league's worst record.
The Montreal Impact will have to play Toronto FC, the Supporters' Shield-winners three times in 2018 (two coming at home), helping to up their average up to 1.45. The Impact also have to travel to New England twice, where the Revolution picked up 2.29 points per game in 2017. The cherry on top comes with the fact that they will have visit both Portland and Seattle, where the teams had a combined record of 22-3-9.