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Reading MLS Standings

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The Sounders have already played seven matches. The Columbus crew just wrapped up their fourth. If you read the current standings at MLSsoccer.com you will notice that the Sounders are in 5th.

Don't believe them.

Due to the different amount of games played the only way to compare teams is based on points per match (or you could do percentage of points won). Now the first tie-breaker for MLS is actually head-to-head, but at this point I feel a more accurate way to rate teams would be to look at Points Per Match Played, a first tie-breaker of number of games remaining (since that gives a team opportunities to earn points that other teams don't have) and lastly by Goal Differential.

By this measure the Sounders are 9th and three of the teams in front of them have 2 or 3 games in hand.

Team

Played

Pts

PPM

GD

LA

6

16

2.67

8

New York

6

15

2.50

4

Columbus

4

8

2.00

3

San Jose

5

9

1.80

0

Houston

6

10

1.67

3

Colorado

6

10

1.67

2

Kansas City

5

7

1.40

1

Chicago

6

8

1.33

2

Seattle

7

9

1.29

0

New England

6

7

1.17

1

Salt Lake

6

7

1.17

1

Chivas USA

6

7

1.17

-3

Toronto

6

6

1.00

-5

Dallas

5

4

0.80

-1

Philadelphia

5

3

0.60

-5

DC

5

0

0.00

-11

 

Seattle's early season, starting with a complete roster rather than one that kept adding players during the season was an opportunity to take an early lead. That opportunity is now gone.

While we continue to see positive signs the mantra of "If they keep playing like this the points will come" can't let the team relax. That has been true for a month now. Only the match at Salt Lake was played poorly in general, and they got the draw there. The losses to Red Bull, Toronto and the draws with Dallas and Columbus were all matches where Seattle was the "better" team.

Those two points in four really should be five, or maybe seven. Seattlewas not the better team in the only portion of the match that matters. Seattle is a talented MLS side, one of the most talented, and they have a great coach.

Is the shift from a 4-2-3-1 to a 4-2-1-3 going to be the difference maker?