Who will be the 2022 MLS Champion?

March 29 – The 2022 Major League Soccer season has got off to a rapid a start, with the Philadelphia Union, LAFC, and Real Salt Lake leading the table in points.

Teams have played either four or five games in the 34-game season, setting up a long and relentless battle for playoff positioning and, ultimately, a tough playoff bracket.

It is a season that for the first time is fully embracing the sports betting business with most clubs having sponsors. That exposure is in turn spiking betting volumes for football and a sharper focus on the title race.

Here is a breakdown of the teams expected to contend heavily for the title.

Los Angeles FC (+700)

Despite finishing ninth in the Western Conference and missing the playoffs last season, Los Angeles FC is the top-ranked team by the best sports betting app US like BetMGM. They have claimed 10 points from a possible 12 in their first four matches and have expected Golden Boot winner Carlos Vela to lead their line, which is why the oddsmakers favor them so heavily.

The season is still extremely young, but LAFC has looked impressive in their opening matches and should finish in a better position than it did last season; whether or not they can go all the way to the title is an entirely different prospect, but on form at this point, they are a highly-deserving favourite.

New England Revolution (+750)

The New England Revolution won the Eastern Conference in 2021, finishing with 73 points and a 19-point gap on the second-place Philadelphia Union. The Revs have only managed four points in their first four games, but their prolific attack is pretty much guaranteed to start finding the net eventually.

New England play well at home and theis is where they will build the foundation of their season, but some warning signs are developing; for example, they just let a three-goal lead slip away against Pumas in the CONCACAF Champions League and ultimately lost the match. It is hard to imagine a world where the Revs are not near the top of the table this season, but they have still to find their previous form.

Seattle Sounders (+750)

The Seattle Sounders are level with the Revolutions with the second-best odds to win the MLS title, although they too have only managed four points in their first four matches. If good news can be taken from this, it is that all of these points have come in the team’s last two outings as they continue to kick off the off-season’s rust.

Seattle finished second in the West and had the second-best goal differential last season, driven by defensive solidarity and offensive prowess. The biggest concern for Seattle is the health of striker Raul Ruiduaz, who had to be withdrawn at halftime of the second match of the season with a hamstring injury. Ruidiaz led the attack with 17 goals scored last season and was expected to battle for the Golden Boot this time around. Staying injury-free looks to be essential to the team’s success.

New York City FC (+1100)

All the way down in fourth place in the oddsmakers’ list is New York City FC, last year’s league champions who managed to get past a fourth seed to eventually finish on top, defeating the Portland Timbers on penalties in the final. Once again, New York has taken just four points from its first four games, which seems to be a common trend amongst the highly-favoured teams. Their lone win was a 4-1 decision against Montreal CF, and although it was a commanding scoreline, it was not against a great opponent.

New York relied heavily on the output of forwarding Valentin Castellanos last season, during which he scored 22 goals, but their 23-year-old star is yet to get off the mark in the current campaign. Once they get him firing, they will be a tough club to beat due to their proficiency at both ends of the pitch.

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