A Guide To Betting On MLS Matches In California | Major League Soccer

If you’re interested in betting on MLS matches in California, then this guide is for you.

In this article we’ll cover the basics of MLS betting and some of the different bet types available. We’ll also take a look at some of the best places to bet on MLS matches in California.


What To Look For In MLS Betting

Betting on MLS matches is similar to betting on other soccer leagues in that there are so many factors to consider, such as:

  • Starting line ups
  • Home advantages
  • Weather conditions
  • Past performances
  • Psychological factors

As a starting point, we recommend following a team’s coaching staff to identify a distinct approach and style. This makes it easier to predict the way upcoming matches are likely to play out, and what players will feature.

Throughout the season you’ll want to pay particular attention to a team’s upcoming schedule. A team will play at least one game per week. Tiredness from excessive travel is known to hamper some teams more than others during the busiest periods of the season.

Referring to statistics, as well as staying current with soccer teams/players on social media, will help to assess upcoming games. But some elements of the game cannot be easily measured — such as the emotional state of players going into a match. For instance, some players will not perform to their fullest when the stakes are high; perhaps while their club is in contention for the CONCACAF Champions League spot. So be aware of the limitations of your analyses.


MLS Odds Are Displayed In American Style

MLS matches have a wide variety of betting options, with markets comparable to those available for European leagues.

Importantly, MLS odds are usually displayed in the American style odds format — which is different from the default format used in other locations across the world. However, some MLS sports betting fans prefer to switch their odds over to the European decimal odds format for MLS matches. This makes it easier to calculate the potential return on a successful bet, and means that transitioning to other leagues is smoother. Furthermore it enables MLS bettors too interpret soccer resources from other regions — such as articles featuring betting tips.

The most popular way to place bets on MLS games is on the three-way moneyline odds (which is known as the 1×2 or Match Odds market in Europe). This market allows you to bet on either team to win or draw a match. The odds are usually lower with a three-way line than with a two-way line due to the possibility of a draw outcome in the former. But either way, you can bet on the outcome that you feel represents the most value.

Bare in mind that high volumes placed on one outcome will alter the odds. For example a favorite team will usually see more betting action than an underdog team, which helps to reduce the favorite’s odds. In this situation the oddsmakers may improve the odds of the underdog, potentially presenting a good bet.


MLS Betting Totals are Similar to Basketball or Baseball

Total bets are popular in American sports such as basketball and baseball. It refers to betting on the number of runs/goals/points scored by the two teams combined. The two options a bettor has is to bet “over” or “under” a certain total. MLS betting totals are set by the oddsmakers who use statistics and trends to set their lines.

Goal differentials should be considered when betting on MLS totals. The home team is expected to have the highest goal differential, but some teams perform significantly better/worse than others while playing away. This could have a baring on how high scoring an upcoming game will be.

However, it’s important to delve deeper into the strengths and weakness of the opposing teams. For example, a matchup between two very defensive, robust teams with a mediocre attack may not result in a high scoring game. On the contrary, two highly offensive teams with leaky defences would most likely result in several goals being scored.

MLS totals can be placed on many events including regular league games, the MLS Cup and Supporters’ Shield.


MLS Futures are Bets on Later Outcomes

MLS futures are bets placed on the achievements of certain players or teams. For example, you can bet on a player to win an award by the end of a season, or a club to win the MLS Cup.

For regular games, MLS odds are released a week or two before kick off. This gives gamblers time to research the teams and make an assessment before placing a bet. However futures bets tend to refer to bets made with a much longer view; hence many odds are released before the season begins.

Remember that futures odds will change as the season unfolds — so it can be advantageous to make an early prediction before the odds are slashed. While betting on MLS futures bettors should consider factors such as injuries to key players — which can make it more difficult for that player/team to achieve their targets. It’s up to you as a MLS fan to determine the impact such changes in circumstances are likely to have on a future outcome.


In-Play Betting Is Available for Most MLS Matches

In-play betting is available for the majority of MLS matches. This enables you to place bets on a match after it has started. Odds will constantly fluctuate as the match progresses, so you’ll want to stay up to date with what’s occurring — whether that be watching the game, or checking for updates.

It’s still possible to bet In-play on MLS matches if you’re unable to watch the match live. For instance, you might opt to place bets on how many yellow cards will be shown, or how many corners will be awarded. These types of bets, and many others, might be based around historical statistics rather than your interpretation of the live game.

When placing in-play bets be sure to research the line-ups and typical team patterns of play before placing your bet. You could, for example, discover that some players tend to lose energy in the latter stages of the game. Or that some teams tend to score a high percentage of their goals within the closing minutes. This information can help you make informed decisions about what’s likely to occur in the time remaining. 


Betting on MLS in California

California sports betting is restricted to online and mobile access only. There are no retail sportsbooks in California.

The best way to bet on MLS in California is to find an online sportsbook that offers odds on MLS matches. Some of the top online sportsbooks that offer MLS betting include BetOnline, Bovada, and SportsBetting.ag.

These sportsbooks offer a wide variety of markets for MLS matches. You can bet on moneyline odds, spread odds, and over/under totals. You can also bet on MLS futures — such as which team will win the MLS Cup or Supporters’ Shield.

When signing up for an account at an online sportsbook, you’ll need to provide some personal information such as your name, address, and email address. You can then provide a credit or debit card to fund your account. Once your account is funded, you can start placing bets on MLS matches.

Most online sportsbooks offer welcome bonuses for new customers. These bonuses give you extra money to bet with, which can be used on MLS matches. Just be sure to check the terms and conditions of the bonus before claiming it, as you will need to meet certain requirements — such as making a minimum deposit or placing a certain number of bets.


Betting on MLS in California is a great way to add excitement to following your favorite soccer clubs. With so many betting options available, players can enjoy an experience comparable to that which is immensely popular across other regions of the world. Just be sure to research teams and players before placing any bets. And don’t forget to take advantage of welcome bonuses from online sportsbooks.

Toby @ Punter2Pro
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