Skip to Main Content

Interactive Regular Season Review: 2020 MLS


Stats Perform’s season reviews feature a comprehensive breakdown of performance at the key ends of the pitch, as well as insights on team playing styles, both in and out of possession. Ahead of the MLS Cup Playoffs, unearth new narratives and discover hidden gems in this review of the regular season.


By: Stats Perform

Having shared insights from the leading European leagues during the summer, Stats Perform’s latest season review focuses on the standout performers from the 2020 MLS regular season.


These reviews apply advanced metrics to deliver key performance insights, at both the team and player level. The advanced metrics used in the report are derived from event data and include Expected Goals (xG), Expected Assists (xA), Expected Goals on Target (xGOT) and Sequences and Possessions.

Key findings highlighted in the MLS review include:

– Supporters’ Shield winners Philadelphia Union and MLS Is Back Tournament winners Portland Timbers were the joint-highest scorers from open play (34), with both teams exceeding their xG output by seven and ten goals respectively.

– Newcomers Nashville SC created over 30% of their total xG from set pieces, with goals from set plays accounting for half of their total regular season output.

– Both New York teams looked to win the ball back high up the field, ranking first and second in MLS for high turnovers. This approach paid off for New York City, who scored five goals from shots resulting from a high turnover.

– New England Revolution stopper Matt Turner enjoyed a strong campaign for the second year in succession. Excluding penalties and own goals, he conceded 21 times, over eight fewer goals compared to what we would expect from the xGOT his team conceded.

– Cristian Espinoza was one of only two players to create over 40 chances following a ball carry. He scored or assisted eight times for San Jose Earthquakes after completing a carry, a combined output substantially higher than any other player.


Check our other season reviews below:

Premier League 2019/20 Interactive Review

EFL Championship 2019/20 Interactive Review

WSL 2019/20 Interactive Review

La Liga 2019/20 Interactive Review

Ligue 1 2019/20 Interactive Review

Serie A 2019/20 Interactive Review

Bundesliga 2019/20 Interactive Review

Enjoy this? Subscribe to The Analyst to receive five stories each Friday from Stats Perform. It’s free.