The MLS Supporters Shield is the award that goes to the MLS team with the best record overall, not just in the divisions. It is an award that also gives a place in the CONCACAF Champions League and as such, is coveted by MLS teams. FC Dallas are the current holders of the Shield, having won with 60 points in the 2016 season.
1. Toronto FC (Eastern Conference)
Record: 13-8-3 (47 points)
Form: WDDWDW (Last six games)
Toronto were on fire this week as they blazed past the Timbers 4-1 on Saturday. With all their attacking pieces working fluidly together, there is no reason why Toronto can’t continue this form and win the shield. At this stage, with ten games remaining, Toronto would need to win nine games to clinch the Shield. They will need to win games a little more consistently, otherwise the points they are bleeding from draws might hurt them.
2. New York City FC (Eastern Conference)
Record: 13-4-7 (43 points)
With David Villa firing on all cylinders, and the rest of the team seeming to more consistently work well behind him, there is no reason that NYCFC can’t keep up with Toronto and grab the Shield out from under them should they slip up. They have a mixed schedule ahead, with both difficult and easy encounters. One of the upcoming games is another New York Derby in two weeks, and having won the last one, they seem capable of repeating.
3. Chicago Fire (Eastern Conference)
Record: 12-5-6 (41 points)
Chicago have fallen from their seemingly unbeatable form from earlier in the season, and with a loss this week, it seems even less likely that they will manage to catch up to Toronto by the end of the season. Their talismanic scorer, Nemanja Nikolic, is not scoring consistently anymore and will need to get started again if they have any chance at the shield. With a game in hand, and only playing 4 other Top 10 teams in their last games, it is still possible.
4. New York Red Bulls (Eastern Conference)
Record: 12-2-9 (38 points)
Having only lost one of the last six games, the Red Bulls are in top-form. Their attack has been scoring goals phenomenally well, and their defence is not the worst. They will need to brace themselves, as more than half of their remaining games are against other Top 10 teams. With their game in hand, they are within a shout of the Shield.
5. Houston Dynamo (Western Conference)
Record: 10-7-7 (37 points)
The Dynamo are right in the thick of the scrap for the Western Division, and also have an outside chance at the Shield. With a tough schedule coming up, if they can manage to beat the other five Top 10 teams in their schedule then their chances are decent. With a ten-point gap to bridge, there is no telling how the rest of the season might go.
6. Seattle Sounders (Western Conference)
Record: 10-7-7 (37 Points)
The Western Division title is certainly achievable, with the Sounders currently sitting in a three-way tie with the Dynamo and SKC. The Sounders have a relatively easy schedule in comparison to the teams above them in the race for the Shield, having only to face one Top 10 team twice in their last games.
7. Sporting Kansas City (Western Conference)
Record: 9-10-5 (37 Points)
SKC have all but thrown away the division in their last six games. Having previously been ahead by a considerable amount, they now find themselves on the losing end of a three-way tie. With their next four games being against Top 10 teams, I can’t see them recovering from the slump that they have found themselves in, especially not after losing Dom Dwyer.
8. Columbus Crew (Eastern Conference)
Record: 11-2-12 (35 points)
The Crew have been nothing, if not inconsistent all season long, and the one-game deficit they have to the other teams in the Top 10 it doesn’t look good for the Crew’s chances. There is a twelve-point gap between the Crew and Toronto (who technically have a game in hand on the Crew), and I honestly don’t see it being bridged given how difficult the rest of their schedule is.
9. Atlanta United (Eastern Conference)
Record: 10-5-7 (35 points)
Atlanta have had patches of really good form multiple times this season, and they seem to be on the downward slope of one of them as we speak. Having failed to beat fellow Top 10 team SKC, Atlanta seem doomed to fail even though they have the two games in hand on Toronto. With a pretty difficult schedule to look forward to, they will need to give it their all to stay in the pack.
10. FC Dallas (Western Conference)
Record: 9-8-5 (35 points)
Dallas are currently stumbling, looking like a team that has lost its’ creativity in front of goal. A team that seemed very likely to stay in the hunt for the Shield two weeks ago, Dallas will need to do some soul searching if they are going to make use of their two-game advantage on the rest of the Top 10. With their next six games being against Top 10 teams that they have already proven they can beat, they have the opportunity to do some real damage and get back up with the pack leaders.