The season is almost upon us, which means it’s that time of year when we all predict things. Today, we present the results of the Dirty South Soccer Writer’s Room poll on which teams from each conference will make the playoffs. Without further adieu:
1. Toronto FC - The defending treble winners rightfully sit on the throne that everyone in the league is looking to usurp this season.
2. Atlanta United - Our Five Stripes seem like they’ve upgraded both in the Starting XI and to the overall depth of the squad. Time will tell if that’s an accurate assessment.
3. NYCFC - The trio of Toronto, Atlanta, and NYCFC are the general favorites to finish in the top 3 in the East (and all of MLS), so no surprises here. Younger and talented.
4. Columbus Crew - Not Crew SC. Columbus freakin Crew. If it’s not gonna be Atlanta, I hope the Crew win the title, just for the awkwardness of it all.
5. New York Red Bulls - Yes, they’ve lost Klejstan, but they add one of Argentina’s most prolific attacking players in Kaku, plus get an older and more experienced Tyler Adams.
6. Orlando City - Shame on our writers! But to be honest, Orlando will/should be a much improved side this year with a ton of additions. The only real quesiton mark is whether the players will gel in time to form a cohesive unit.
- Seattle Sounders - A somewhat safe pick considering the Sounders have played in the last two MLS Cup Playoff Finals. *These picks were made prior to Jordan Morris’ season-ending knee injury, so maybe bump Seattle down a couple spots.
- Sporting Kansas City - With veteran leadership and one of the best coaches in MLS who always has his team very well-drilled, Kansas City is one of the more predictable teams (in a good way) in an unpredictable conference.
- Portland Timbers - How will the Timbers fare in a new era, without longtime head coach Caleb Porter and attacking midfielder Darlington Nagbe? We think they’ll do just fine.
- FC Dallas - Dallas was Awful with a capital A down the stretch last year and shockingly missed the playoffs because of it, but manager Oscar Pereja has consistent track record of success, and I imagine that one or two players that we don’t know right now will become household names.
- Real Salt Lake - On the other end of the spectrum from Dallas was RSL, who vaulted up the table and nearly made the playoffs after having one of the worst records in the league in the first half of the season. Mike Petke should be able to get his team over the red line this year.
- LA Galaxy - The Galaxy has literally never been bad for long in its MLS history, so expect a bounceback from them this year under a veteran coach in Sigi Schmid who knows how to win in this league.
Click here to see the full table of predictions for each individual writer’s rankings. But enough from us — give us y’alls predictions in the comments!