MLS Players by birthplace - March 2018 - World

Major League Soccer is once again leading the charge in diversity (as determined by birthplace) in the North American sports landscape. From its current pool of 637 players, 72 countries are represented in MLS, the most of any soccer league in the world.


Among those 637 players, 234 (36.7 percent) have been capped by their national teams, including 36 of 53 current Designated Players. Among these, 40 have been included on a FIFA World Cup roster.


During the offseason, MLS clubs signed its youngest group of newcomers in league history. Those 96 players (not counting rookies, Homegrown signings or transfers from USL-affiliates) maintain an average age of 25.05 years old, and 50 percent had international experience. Of note, MLS clubs signed 30 players hailing from South American countries, averaging 22 years of age.


The current class of DPs is the youngest in league history, with the 53 Designated Players in the league averaging 27.32 years of age. This offseason, MLS clubs signed 13 new Designated Players to the league, with those players averaging 23.46 years of age.


Diversity of North American Sports Leagues

League
Total Number of Players
Born outside US/Canada
Total nations represented
Average age
MLS (2018)
637
315 (49.4%)
72
25.36
Liga MX (2017-18)
497
207 (41.7%)
23
27.00
MLB (2017)
1087
326 (29.9%)
24
28.33
NHL (2017-18)
779
225 (28.8%)
22
27.17
NBA (2017-18)
496
96 (19.4%)
47
26.22
NFL (2017)
2104
57 (2.7%)
26
26.36

Foreign-born MLS players by country


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Country
No. of Players
Argentina
23
England
19
France
19
Ghana
18
Colombia
15

MLS Players by State/Province


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State/Province
No. of Players
California
61
New York
21
Ontario
18
Texas
18
New Jersey
17

Average age of MLS newcomers at the end of the regular season

Year
Age
2018
25.05*
2017
26.06
2016
25.70
2015
27.02
2014
27.53

*Age at the beginning of the season

Average Age of Designated Players at End of Regular Season

Year
Age
2018
27.32*
2017
28.29
2016
29.38
2015
29.21
2014
29.34

Age at the beginning of the season
All Statistics Courtesy of the Elias Sports Bureau
Leagues in season include all players on current rosters.
Leagues out of season include players on rosters when the season ended.
Totals as of March 6, 2018