LAFC have yet to beat the LA Galaxy in five tries. The Philadelphia Union went undefeated in their two prior games vs. Atlanta United this season. Toronto FC are a tough matchup with a daunting postseason history for New York City FC. And Real Salt Lake thumped the Seattle Sounders 3-0 in their most recent meeting.
All that is just anecdotal window dressing for the powerful analytical models at FiveThirtyEight.com, whose latest projections predict all four higher-seeded home sides winning this week’s Conference Semifinals in the Audi 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs.
Homefield advantage played a key role in the weekend’s Round One action, with the home side winning in five of the six matches, and FiveThirtyEight’s data suggests that will likely continue.
LAFC vs. LA Galaxy
As they have for months, LAFC continue to top the renowned data-crunching site’s MLS index and the Supporters’ Shield winners are rated at 85% likelihood to defeat their crosstown rivals at Banc of California Stadium on Thursday and advance to the Conference Finals. They also retain a more-than-likely prospect of hoisting MLS Cup as well, with a 55% probability.
NYCFC vs. Toronto FC
Eastern Conference top seeds NYCFC follow in 538’s second spot with a 71% probability to defeat TFC at Citi Field on Wednesday, are rated at 47% probability to win the East side of the bracket and 18% to win MLS Cup.
Atlanta United vs. Philadelphia Union
Defending champs Atlanta come third overall in the index and are calculated at 68% likely to beat Philly at home on Thursday to move on.
Seattle Sounders vs. Real Salt Lake
The Seattle Sounders are slated at 70% probability to advance past RSL when they face off at CenturyLink Field on Wednesday, though their prospects of reaching MLS Cup are tabbed at a much slimmer 16%.
Peruse FiveThirtyEight’s full rundown here.