MLS 2024 Predictions: A Too Early Look

Updated:

The 2023 Major League Soccer season may have only just finished, but I’m already prepared to make some early MLS 2024 predictions. 

Following the Columbus Crew’s triumph in Ohio, Los Angeles FC will be out for revenge next season. That said, a certain World Cup winner from Argentina will be looking to fire Inter Miami to glory in 2024. 

The bookmakers have already released their outright odds for next season. Before I reveal my way-too-early MLS 2024 predictions, let’s find out what the bookies make of the situation. 

2024 MLS Cup Outright Betting Odds 

  • Inter Miami (+525) 
  • Los Angeles FC (+650) 
  • Columbus Crew (+750) 
  • Philadelphia Union (+1000) 
  • FC Cincinnati (+1200) 
  • Orlando City SC (+1800) 
  • Seattle Sounders (+1800) 
  • Nashville SC (+2500) 
  • New York Red Bulls (+2500) 
  • Real Salt Lake (+2500) 
  • St. Louis City SC (+2500) 
  • Atlanta United (+3000) 
  • Houston Dynamo (+3000) 
  • Sporting Kansas City (+3000) 
  • Los Angeles Galaxy (+3300) 
  • FC Dallas (+4000) 
  • New England Revolution (+4000) 
  • New York City FC (+4000) 
  • Portland Timbers (+4000) 
  • San Jose Earthquakes (+4000) 
  • Vancouver Whitecaps (+4000) 
  • Minnesota United (+5000) 
  • CF Montreal (+6600) 
  • D.C. United (+6600) 
  • Austin FC (+7500) 
  • Charlotte FC (+10000) 
  • Chicago Fire (+15000) 
  • Toronto FC (+15000) 
  • Colorado Rapids (+20000) 

As you can see, Inter Miami is the bookies’ early favorite to win the 2024 MLS Cup. With Lionel Messi on board, the up-and-coming Florida franchise has the potential to cause a stir in Major League Soccer. 

After reaching back-to-back MLS Cup finals – triumphing in 2022 before finishing as the runner-up in 2023 – Los Angeles FC is the second favorite. The Columbus Crew comes in at number three after securing the silverware in 2023. 

The Philadelphia Union and FC Cincinnati bridge the gap between the favorites and outsiders, while Orlando City SC and Seattle Sounders are the only other teams priced under +2500. 

MLS 2024 Predictions – Who Will Win the MLS Cup? 

It goes without saying that Wilfried Nancy’s men will be eager to defend their title, although winning back-to-back MLS Cups is no easy task. Only three teams have triumphed in successive seasons over the years, with the LA Galaxy last achieving the feat in 2014. 

That said, Columbus has what it takes to mount another serious title charge in 2024. Not only did the Crew score more regular-season goals than any other team last season, but they also dominated the playoffs. 

Despite the Crew’s success last season, Inter Miami and LAFC are favored to reach the next final. With superstars like Messi, Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba in their ranks, the Herons could achieve something special. 

So, what are my MLS 2024 predictions for the title winner? 

I’m backing LAFC to return to the summit of Major League Soccer next season. Having reached two MLS Cup finals and secured two Supporters’ Shields in the past five years, the Californians know what it takes to go all the way. 

Plus, LAFC possesses Denis Bouanga, who racked up 25 goals and seven assists in 36 MLS appearances last season. 

Which Players Will Challenge for the MVP Award? 

The next of my early MLS 2024 predictions concerns the Landon Donovan MVP Award. FC Cincinnati’s Luciano Acosta scooped the prestigious prize last season, receiving more than 60% of the votes. Bouanga and Thiago Almada finished second and third, respectively. 

2023 MLS MVP VOTING RESULTS 

  1. Luciano Acosta, FC Cincinnati (60.37%) 
  2. Denis Bouanga, Los Angeles FC (14.97%) 
  3. Thiago Almada, Atlanta United (6.46%) 

We are still waiting for the bookies to release their 2024 MVP odds, but I’m 99% certain that Messi will be the favorite. The eight-time Ballon d’Or winner arrived in Miami midway through the previous campaign, but he still made a colossal impact. 

Since only one player – Preki – has won the MLS MVP Award twice, it will be difficult for Acosta to triumph again in 2024. That said, the Argentine playmaker racked up 21 goals and 14 assists for Cincy last season. 

Bouanga and Almada will also back themselves to go one better in 2024, but I can’t look past Messi when it comes to predicting the next MVP. Even at the ripe old age of 36, the former Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain superstar is in a league of his own. 

MLS 2024 Predictions – Who Will Clinch the Golden Boot? 

You probably won’t be surprised to learn that I’m also backing Messi to run away with the Golden Boot in 2024. 

Between August and October, Messi announced himself to North America in style, scoring 11 goals in 14 games for his new club. As a result, the Argentine megastar boasts a goals-per-game ratio of 0.79 for Inter Miami. 

If Messi averaged 0.79 goals per game throughout the entire MLS regular season, he would finish with almost 27 goals. Since the Golden Boot’s inception in 2005, 15 of the 19 winners have claimed the award with fewer than 27 goals. 

MLS GOLDEN BOOT WINNERS (27+ GOALS) 

  • Carlos Vela, Los Angeles FC (2019) – 34 
  • Josef Martinez, Atlanta United (2018) – 31 
  • Chris Wondolowski, San Jose Earthquakes (2012) – 27 
  • Bradley Wright-Phillips, New York Red Bulls (2014) – 27 

Of course, huge credit must be given to Bouanga, who netted an impressive 20 goals in 31 games on his way to securing the silverware last season. With all due respect, though, Bouanga is nowhere near Messi’s level. 

Stay Tuned for More MLS 2024 Predictions 

Unsurprisingly, Messi dominates my way-too-early MLS 2024 predictions. The legendary forward has won everything there is to win in soccer, so I can see him making a mockery of countless MLS defenders in 2024. 

The new Major League Soccer season is set to begin in late February, giving fans and bettors some time to lock in their MLS 2024 predictions. Still, I always enjoy making early calls, and I can’t wait to see if they come to fruition. 

Sports Hub will continue to cover Major League Soccer throughout the upcoming campaign. So, stay tuned for more MLS 2024 predictions, expert picks and betting advice.