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2023 MLS Power Rankings averages for preseason

Nine sites published for preseason. How accurate will they be in October?

9 sites published leading up to MLS first kick. More will be added in the coming weeks. If you find or know of any that I have not listed below, please comment below.

A reminder of what Power Rankings should be (not that every site does, of course):

"If two teams played tomorrow, given their current injury concerns, form, and other considerations, who is likely to win on a neutral field? All things being equal, who is the best team going forward, based on what we know now?"

— Richard Farley, NBC Sports ProSoccerTalk. March 11, 2014.

Sites Used

You may notice the inclusion of 'analytic' sites; they serve to function as a 'control group' to the rest which are based on personal opinions. There are also sites included that some will argue are 'prediction rankings' - but that also is a form of Power Ranking is (see the quote at the top) since it uses algorithms to calculate a team's likely final position.

Bias for or against certain teams are sometimes an unfortunate feature of power rankings. It can be based on their analytic formula, or the raters preference. In some cases the bias can become extreme - If you feel a site got the ratings wrong for your team I invite you to contact them regarding it.

I will typically only remove sites for two reasons.

  1. Duplicating / copying ratings from another source on the list.

  2. Failure to update for 6 consecutive weeks. Previous ratings will not be removed, but new ones may or may not be added. I will still periodically check them to see if they have resumed.

All the averages use the Olympic method (I.E. Truncated Mean value) of dropping the highest and lowest scores, and then averaging the rest to reduce bias.

The full spreadsheeet is here.

  • Highest Standard Deviation: Toronto 7.79
  • Lowest Standard Deviation: Philadelphia 0.44
  • Biggest Rise: N/A
  • Biggest Fall: N/A
  • New Lows: N/A
  • New Highs: N/A
  • Most accurate site of the week: Reddit r/MLS with 8 teams exactly on average.
  • Least accurate site of the week: Sonny Moore with 10 off by 7+.

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