Over the weekend I described the process I’m using to simulate MLS seasons, and the odds that a team reaches the playoffs. After using this tool for most of this year, I’ve recently tried extending this work to look at how team projections change during a season.
Over the course of this season I’ve been occasionally running simulations of how the rest of the Major League Soccer season might end up. The feedback I’ve gotten from this work has been generally positive, and a number of people have asked about my methodology. This post is, finally, my attempt to explain the process… Continue reading How I’m simulating playoff odds
I recently shared on Twitter an updated visualization that summarizes the outcome of all the expansion drafts in MLS history. Particularly now that the league has 20+ years of history, and has more than doubled in size since its inception, it seems worth preserving the history of events like the expansion draft.
While Toronto and Seattle are preparing to face off in MLS Cup, the rest of the teams in Major League Soccer are turning their attention towards next season. Most immediately, teams are making decisions about which players should return and which should be let go.
Given the emphasis that Columbus coach Gregg Berhalter places on possession and passing, it probably isn’t a surprise that I’ve started to focus on those statistical categories. Throughout the 2016 season, as troublesome results started to accumulate, I’ve tried to understand the Columbus approach to possession and passing within the context of other teams in… Continue reading Possession, Passing, and Shooting in MLS in 2016
Every so often I go back and refresh this chart – one of the first I ever tried – that plots players used in World Cup cycles (both qualifying and tournament finals) by the US men’s national team from 1998 through the present. With the 2018 Hexagonal set to begin next month, this seems like… Continue reading Players used in World Cup qualifying, 1998 – 2016
The 2016 season for Columbus Crew SC is turning into one of the hardest in team history. A year after hosting MLS Cup, the team is mired near the foot of the Eastern Conference standings. The collapse is threatening to set several team records for futility, including lowest number of victories and the fewest points… Continue reading Winless stretches in Columbus Crew SC history
One of my goals for this season is to expand the scope of my analysis efforts. For the last few seasons I’ve been able to capture not just Columbus data, but all of MLS. For 2016, my hope has been to expand that further and capture leagues like the NASL and USL. These efforts have… Continue reading Website design, data consistency, and how analysis is hampered
Last summer, I published an article that examined the repeatability of success in Major League Soccer’s regular season. Using data from recent seasons, I concluded that “[a]n MLS team’s performance one year has very little relationship to its performance the following year.” With the 2016 season starting tomorrow, it seems appropriate to build upon that… Continue reading Revisiting the repeatability of team success
A few weeks ago I discussed the coding project which I’ve set myself for this offseason – to rebuild as much of my data processing infrastructure as possible. At the time the MLS postseason was still grinding along, however, so I was focused mostly on that rollercoaster. Now, with MLS Cup complete and the offseason underway… Continue reading Setting the structure of Project Trapp