Monday, June 01, 2009

MLS Week 11 Notes

1) Jeff Cunningham is seven games away from history. At that point, he'll tie Jason Kreis for the dubious record of having played the most MLS regular season games without playing in an MLS Cup. See the top 25 post-2008 here. Kreis has held the record for three years now, but Cunningham should have it all to his own shortly.

2) The Colorado Rapids are second in the league for offense with 1.60 goals per game. If you have a gut feeling that it's unusual to see them scoring so frequently, then you're right. They've never finished higher than 4th in that category, and they've only been in the top half in two of thirteen years. I suppose looking back, they were on the right track last year, finishing 5th and breaking a nine year streak of lower half finishes.

3) New England's offense, on the other hand, has been pathetic. Maybe that'll change now that Taylor Twellman is back, but currently they're averaging a goal per game which is tied for worst in the league. They're also on pace to set two new records: Fewest shots per game (8.0) and fewest corner kicks per game (3.4). The current records are held by 2007 Toronto (9.2) and 2006 Dallas (3.5) respectively.

4) Chicago was the league's last undefeated team. How have those teams done in previous years? Usually pretty well, although the last two years (NY and Dallas) are exceptions. Before the past two years, every year a team in that category finished in the top three of the league (a couple years featured multiple teams tying for the last undefeated status).

Columbus was the league's last winless team, and the omens aren't good for them. Only once has such a team advanced past the first round of the playoffs (2002 NE).

I counted shootouts as draws in both these categories, and also I went by the number of games into the year rather than by the calendar.

5) Even though there have been plenty of draws (did you hear?), this year's home field advantage (0.68) is right in line with the all time average (around 0.67 PPG). So it's not like away teams are having a harder time getting points than in previous years.

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