I was recently asked if Seattle Sounders FC could make the playoffs in year one. Which considering that there are 15 teams in the league, as asking "Will this expansion team be an average team in the league?"
That question isn't that hard to answer. For me, the goal is to win 7 or 8 home games. If Sounders FC can do that they are in the MLS Cup Playoffs.
How can I say that?
Well 40 points is basically the magic number for points. A win gets a team 3 points, and a tie gets them 1.
Last year an average team won 7.57 games at home, and drew 4.07. As an away team, things were different only 3.36 wins and 4.07 draws. That average team gets 40 points.
The road is where the action happens.
Only 3 teams had six wins on the road, all made the playoffs. The Western Conference regular season team that had the best record were the Houston Dynamo and they only had 3 wins.
So that's the goal for SSFC, 7+ wins at home and 3+ on the road. That's all an average team would do. 10 wins, 10 losses, 10 draws. All it takes to be average is to score 42 goals and give up 42 goals.
Can Sounders FC crack the road code in MLS? Is this why they are spending half of training camp in "hostile" territory like Central Cali, Argentina, and the PDX? Will the bonding that this club forms create the unity needed to pick up at least 3 road wins?