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MLS Cup Futures
Which teams are worth your money?
Every team enters the season hoping to win MLS Cup. But only one of the 27 teams will get to do it in December. Trying to pick which one of the 27 teams that will take home the ultimate crown is probably a fool’s errand, but we’re going to do it anyway!
Below you can find MLS Cup Futures for every MLS team but one (will get to that in a sec) and I’m going to tell you where there is and where there isn’t value. Keep in mind how this works: +2000 equals 20-1 so if you bet $100 you would win $2000 and so on.
If you want to look back at last year — which you probably shouldn’t because of COVID — the Crew were +4400 heading into the season according to Fanduel.
Disclaimer: Due to my relationship with Austin FC, I will not be discussing them on this site.
MLS Cup Futures (BetMGM/Bovada)
No chance/No value
These teams either don’t have a prayer of winning MLS Cup or the books have created no value in betting with the odds they have them and the low chances of actually winning.
FC Cincinnati (+5000/+5000): Sure they do have some talent now, but they would need to be MUCH higher to make it worth a bet considering their history.
Houston Dynamo (+10000/+12500): The Dynamo have the worst odds of any team in the league and it makes sense — Tab Ramos’ team is probably going to be one of the worst in MLS in 2021.
Montreal Impact (+5000/+6600): This team is a bit of a mess heading into the season after losing Thierry Henry and yet their highest odds are +6600? I don’t get it.
Real Salt Lake (+6600/+8800): RSL figure to be the worst team in MLS in 2021 as they search for a new owner. They should have the longest odds of any team and yet they don’t.
This could really go either way as there are many teams that don’t have much of a chance to win MLS Cup, but there are some teams whose odds are too low for it to make any sense to place a bet.
Chicago Fire (+3300/+3300): There’s no doubt that the Fire have a lot of talent — and they have had a year to gel — but I don’t think they should be anywhere below +5000 and yet they’re at +3300.
Columbus Crew (+900/+550): It’s hard for me to get behind any team that has better than 10-1 odds. There’s just too many things that can happen throughout the season and the playoffs. The Crew are one of the top teams coming into the season and if you want to grab them at +900, I wouldn’t fault you.
FC Dallas (+3300/+2500): While there’s plenty of talent and playoff experience on this team, there just aren’t those stars you need to win MLS Cup (look at the winners in recent years) and there’s little chance they will acquire any. If the future sat at +4000, it might have enticed me.
LAFC (+500/+400): As stated above, it’s tough for me to get behind any team that has odds less than +1000. And we know Bob Bradley’s team has had it’s struggles finishing off knockout competitions.
Inter Miami (+2200/+2200): 2020 was a disaster and 2021 figures to be a little hectic with a new coach. There’s plenty of talent on this team but it’s doubtful that it will all be able to gel so quickly. If they were closer to +4000, I may have laid a unit down.
NYCFC (+1000/+1200): This team has failed in the playoffs over and over again and this year they come in with little depth. They could make some signings this summer, but I just can’t see why this team has such low odds.
New York Red Bulls (+2200/+2500): There is a very good chance the Red Bulls bounce back to their old ways under new coach Gerhard Struber, but they just don’t have the top-end talent to win MLS Cup and have shown no desire to make that kind of move.
Seattle Sounders (+800/+700): We’ve been through this before as the Sounders are at +800/+700. And they’re getting older.
Toronto FC (+1200/+900): See Seattle. You can take a stab at +1200 though.
Vancouver Whitecaps (+6600/+8000): This has been one of the worst teams in MLS in recent years and while they have made some interesting signings, it’s tough to imagine them going from where they’ve been all the way to winning the ultimate trophy. +6600 is about right but maybe +8000 is worth it if Lucas Cavallini goes off.
Colorado Rapids (+4000/+4000): +4000 is just enough for me to get intrigued about a team that reached the playoffs and have young players that will probably be better in 2021 (Bassett, Vines). If Padraig Smith goes out and gets a star striker I’d feel really good about this.
D.C. United (+10000/+10000): Put simply: I feel the odds are way out of whack. D.C. should be in the 50-1 or 60-1 and yet they’re at 100-1. Hernan Losada will put a fire under some of their underperforming players from 2020.
LA Galaxy (+2500/+2800): With the additions of Kevin Cabral and Samuel Grandsir, this team has talent. If Chicharito can bounce back under a competent coach — and if they get a quality center back — they can get back into the playoffs. Then if Chicharito gets hot…
Nashville SC (+5000/+5000): The model for this team is the 2016 Colorado Rapids but with better attacking talent. They made it all the way to the Conference Semis last year and could take it a step further now that Jhonder Cadiz is settled in. They also brought in another quality attacker on the wing with Rodrigo Piñeiro.
Orlando City SC (+1800/+1200): This is more about the +1800 number than the +1200 one. The Lions added some depth and if they can keep Nani fresh into the winter, they have a good shot at lifting their first trophy.
Philadelphia Union (+1200/+1200): This is mostly a bet on the fact that I don’t believe they lost too much with the Brenden Aaronson and Mark McKenzie transfers. They have ready-made replacements and it will be all about keeping their strikers healthy and seeing improvement from the likes of Olivier Mbaizo, Anthony Fontana and other homegrowns.
San Jose Earthquakes (+6600/+10000): This is another one where you can do some line shopping to make it make sense. Matias Almeyda’s team made the playoffs last year and they added two more of his former players that should help them. Is it enough? Probably not. But you can definitely have some fun at +10000.
All these teams have a good shot at winning MLS Cup and have odds that make sense.
Atlanta United (+2000/+2000): They didn’t look particularly impressive against Alajuelense but Josef is back and they have a competent coach. With all the talent on this roster, +2000 could be a steal.
Minnesota United FC (+2500/+2500): We saw what the Loons did last year. They made the final four in both the MLS is Back Tournament and the playoffs. Of course Kevin Molino is gone, but if Ramon Abila is truly an answer up top, this team should be considered one of the best in MLS. At +2500, they would be a steal.
New England Revolution (+2500/+2000): Bruce knows how to win in the playoffs. He has the top-end talent in Matt Turner, Gustavo Bou and Carles Gil. They have made some additions in the offseason. You can clearly see them coming out of the East and if it gets to that point, you can hedge in the final.
Portland Timbers (+2000/+2000): We’ve probably been saying this for a couple years but…one last ride. Gio Savarese has clearly made CCL a priority so they could get off to a slow start but expect them to start their run once Jaroslaw Niezgoda comes back and Sebastian Blanco gets some time to find himself again.
Sporting Kansas City (+1600/+3000): This is all about the +3000 number as they would probably be in the Little Value section with the +1600 number. Sporting won the West last year without having Alan Pulido for much of the year (though he’s likely to miss time in 2021 while with Mexico). Peter Vermes brought in some reinforcements and we could see a big jump from Gianluca Busio.