We’re half-way through September, and the playoff slots are quickly being filled by teams in the MLS and USL. Still plenty of action happening in NASL, and throughout the Canadian 3rd Division L1O & PLSQ. Let’s jump right in.
In MLS play, Toronto FC continues to dominate. As a result of their sustained presence, they’ve continued to outpace their Canadian rivals. Both Montreal Impact and Vancouver Whitecaps continue to sink in the ELO ranking. Thankfully there is a considerable gap between them and the 2nd Division NASL teams. The gap between Montreal Impact and Vancouver Whitecaps has shrunk to a mere 8 points as a result of Vancouver’s win over Columbus Crew. Vancouver’s CONCACAF Champions League performance would probably boost them well over Montreal, but those matches are excluded from these ELO rankings in 2016 and prior years.
In NASL action, FC Edmonton has suffered a couple of losses and a home-tie over the past couple of weeks. As a result, their rating, although still above the NASL average, has dropped by almost 30 points. In contrast, Ottawa Fury FC continue their draw-streak. Since their recent matches against Puerto Rico and Carolina are both road matches, this has helped their rating by 8 points. With recent rumours swirling about a potential league change to USL, their team seems to be in good condition for that league.
Speaking of USL, there’s been a slight shift in the rankings in the past couple updates. Vancouver Whitecaps FC2 continue to be the top Canadian teams, through they’ve been in a bit of a slump the past couple weeks. FC Montreal, who once flirted with PDL’s Victoria Highlanders for their ELO rating, now have a 6-point lead on rivals Toronto FC II. Vancouver continues to challenge for a USL playoff berth, but both Toronto and Montreal have been mathematically eliminated from the running.
A round of L1O play has further cemented the reigning order of the league. With Durham United FA now having lost to both Vaughan Azzurri (1st place) and Woodbridge Strikers (2nd place), they seem to be stuck in 3rd. FC London have climbed by a couple of points, but remain in 4th with a 10-point gap. Thanks to the conclusion of the semi-finals for the PLSQ cup, we’re seeing those numbers further solidify as well. AS Blainville remains top of the pack, followed by CS Mont-Royal Outremont (2nd), FC Gatineau (3rd) and a distant Lakeshore SC (4th). FC Gatineau has the potential to jump into 2nd if they do well between now and the PLSQ Cup final at the end of October.
That’s it for the ELO Ratings this week. Besides the upcoming matches, we’re also keeping a ear on the various rumours swirling about the Canadian Premier League. One of the most recent being that the Vancouver Whitecaps, Montreal Impact and Toronto FC may no longer be considered secure in MLS if the Canadians as domestics issue remains unresolved. If the CPL manages to snatch these three franchises from MLS, it will be a phenomenal coup for the potential league and may simplify ELO Ratings. With the rumoured target being 2018, there’s still plenty of time for more information to be leaked between now and the CPL’s start date. Fingers crossed!