FiveThirtyEight has put out its latest projections for the MLS season, and their favorite to win MLS Cup might come as a surprise.
The best odds for the Supporters' Shield are the obvious pick at this point, as FiveThirtyEight has Columbus Crew SC with the best chance to take home the regular season title at 54 percent. Those are the highest odds of any team by a substantial margin, with the Philadelphia Union — three points behind them in the standings — given the next-highest Shield chances at 15 percent. No one else is higher than 6 percent, which is the mark given to the Seattle Sounders and Toronto FC, with last year's Supporters Shield winners LAFC given a 5 percent chance to repeat.
FiveThirtyEight: Projected Supporters' Shield Chances
- Columbus Crew SC - 54%
- Philadelphia Union - 15%
- Seattle Sounders - 6%
- Toronto FC - 6%
- LAFC - 5%
As for MLS Cup, LAFC have endured a rough patch recently, but FiveThirtyEight is sticking with them as the favorites to take home the league's top prize, giving them a 13 percent chance to make a championship run, also giving them a 97% chance to make the postseason even as they've slipped just below the playoff line. As far as MLS Cup odds are concerned, Columbus are right behind LAFC at 12 percent, and Philadelphia coming in at 11 percent. The teams that have made it to three out of the last four MLS Cups follow, with Seattle given a 9 percent chance and Toronto FC rounding out the top five at 8 percent.
FiveThirtyEight: Projected MLS Cup Chances
- LAFC - 13%
- Columbus Crew SC - 12%
- Philadelphia Union - 11%
- Seattle Sounders - 9%
- Toronto FC - 8%