These are really high times in Seattle Sounders land. The giddiness over the 11 match all competitions unbeaten streak is hard to contain. While the defense has been a little rough, it isn't awful and the offense is just playing amazing right now. Since game four Seattle has been earning two points a game. As I said, plain giddy. So what is the future for this team that as of this moment is still just a wild card team? Can we surmise a way to look at performance and estimate the expected finish?
In fact there are more ways than just that. Sidereal obviously has his methods. There's a soccer version of pythag that is a little more complex than I like, and even one that I'm developing involving Shots For/Against and Save Percentage. We'll get to that one later in the week as it requires a lot more data. But the thing is at this point in the season we start to get a look at how the table is now, as well as how it should be.
Those of us that follow teams in the Western Conference won't be surprised that the top four are still from the West with just a tiny shift as Seattle is expected to edge FC Dallas while Real Salt Lake and the Los Angeles Galaxy compete for the Supporters Shield. The Eastern Conference should see the same three teams at the top as typical with the Philadelphia Union possibly challenging, though two matches are responsible for nearly all of their Goal Differential. There are only tiny difference between New York Red Bulls and the Columbus Crew. Most intriguingly is that the battle for the final three wild card slot will be intense. There are six teams between 41 and 43 expected points and even the Portland Timbers sit within two wins of 43 at 37 expected points. And Oh, Canada, your two teams are battling for last.
|Los Angeles Galaxy||1.86||39||1.29||0.76||11||57||61|
|Real Salt Lake||1.76||30||1.35||0.71||11||59||60|
|Seattle Sounders FC||1.73||38||1.45||1.05||9||54||57|
|New York Red Bulls||1.38||29||1.62||1.14||10||56||50|
|San Jose Earthquakes||1.21||23||1.16||1.11||1||46||43|
|Sporting Kansas City||1.21||23||1.26||1.32||-1||44||42|
|New England Revolution||0.84||16||0.84||1.37||-10||33||31|
|Vancouver Whitecaps FC||0.70||14||0.95||1.40||-9||35||28|
Here's a legend. Teams in Blue are the teams that are currently top 3 in West by PPM. Teams in Red are the top 3 in East by PPM. The teams in Purple are the 4 Wild Cards by PPM. In each case goal differential was used as next tie-breaker since head-to-head can't be done.
x34 applies Graham's formula over a pure 34 match league season.
xFinish applies the formula only for remaining games and includes points already won.