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Ship’s Log, April 6: Can a winless team be favored?

The oddsmakers have the Sounders favored in Saturday's match. There are actually good reasons for that.

Last Updated
4 min read
© Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports


Take that Betteridge’s Law.

Let’s start off with a few statements of fact, some that we don’t really want to be reminded of – the Seattle Sounders are still looking for their first win. They’ve played 5.1 games to this point in the season, only scoring four goals and have merely two points on the table.

C.F. Montreal is 2-1-2, which is a lot better than 0-3-2.

Why would Seattle be favored? The first answer is simple. Home teams almost always are in MLS. There are not substantial talent differences in MLS like the major Euro leagues.

But also, the Sounders will be favored because Montreal is a team that struggles to generate shots, struggles to defend, struggles to possess, struggles in the air and the list goes on and on.

Advanced metrics also still like the Sounders (aided by their ability to draw penalties). Seattle is a midtable team when it comes to xG, xGA, xGD. Montreal is also a midtable team by those measures, though better in the attack than the Sounders.

The two sides go about their advanced metrics differently. Montreal is good at dribbling and taking infrequent but effective shots. Seattle is better at fouling in non-dangerous positions and taking frequent shots.

Seattle only struggles at one thing – scoring. That’s a really big thing. One that has to be fixed in order to be even mediocre, let alone be the trophy contenders that most people expected. They have to get good at scoring to be a great team.

Even being favored, this little block from WhoScored has me worried.

That's a story we've seen too frequently since May 2022.

– Dave Clark

Catching up on Sounder at Heart

Missed the week's Puget Sound soccer news? Here are our latest stories


v. Montreal preview (Saturday, April 6 at 7:30 p.m. PDT on MLS Season Pass at Lumen Field)



They're off this weekend for the international break. Six players were called up, including all three Welsh dragons (Fishlock scored twice Friday morning). The USWNT is in the SheBelieves Cup facing Japan today.


Tacoma hosts LAFC2 on Sunday, April 7 at 5 p.m. PDT on at Starfire. LAFC2 are second in the conference. Defiance are 3rd.


Tacoma Stars are in the MASL playoffs, beating the Chihuahua Savage Friday night 6-5, their 10th straight win. Stars travel to Savage on Sunday, 6 p.m. PDT on Twitch TV. If they win, they advance.

Spokane Velocity are off this weekend.

Purchasing the new jersey or planning to get MLS Season Pass? Use our affiliate links to toss some coin to your bloggers.

Looking back at the week's news

Everything else you need to know.

Red Bulls pulled their Academy teams out of the GA Cup after the U-17s were subjected to two different incidents of racism, with only one being punished.

Big CBS is hosting Louisville City v. Indy XI prior to the men's Final Four tomorrow, at 1 p.m. PDT. Former Defiance star Ray Serrano is now a key player in Lou City's attack. This is the USL's first match on broadcast TV.

The Athletic suggests Obed Vargas might go to the Olympics, but not Josh Atencio.

That rain-suspended Philly match did give us this great Andrew Thomas feature.

Hany Mukhtar is observing Ramadan and playing 339 minutes with a goal and assist for Nashville.

MLS VAR is now headquartered out of North Texas.

New England Revolution continue to crawl towards a stadium in the city.

Opta raised MLS to a top 10 league in the world. The only Western Hemisphere league ahead is Brazil. This is all while MLS still can't beat Liga MX teams if Seattle isn't involved in the CCC/CCL. The league's revenue is exceptionally strong.

SaH partner Backheeled reviewed Round Two of the Open Cup, including the Watts-Kerr PBP combo that used 235 Taylor Swift songs during live coverage.

Reality dating TV is having a soccer moment.

Fishlock nearly quit Wales (instead she's scoring bangers) after their loss in the Euro playoffs. This may be her last run though.

Woodham talked to a Welsh site about why she joined Reign FC.

Denver, Cleveland and Minnesota are among the leaders to be the NWSL's 16th team.

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