Can I Get Bonuses to Bet on MLS?
Our recommended betting sites all offer promotions that are perfect if you want to bet on MLS online. You can claim welcome bonuses when you sign up at our top sites, and opt in for additional offers after you open your account.
Here’s a breakdown of a few of the most common types of MLS bonuses:
Deposit Bonus: This type of bonus rewards you for making a deposit into your account. These are typically match bonuses.
For instance, if a betting site offers you a 100% match up to $100, that means that for each dollar you put in your account, you’ll get a dollar in bonus funds as well – up to the maximum of $100.
Deposit bonuses are common when you open your account, but they are also be offered as reload bonuses to reward existing players.
Free Bets: Free bets give you the chance to win a wager with absolutely no risk. You’ll be able to put down a bet with the sportsbook’s own money, and if you win, the money will go right into your account.
Odds Boosts: Some betting sites will offer you the chance to make a legitimate bet, but with greatly improved odds. These promotions aren’t guaranteed to go your way, but typically allow you to bet on a favorite with a huge payout, giving you a chance to quickly build your bankroll.
These are just a few of the most common types of MLS betting bonuses. You can find these and other promotions at each of our recommended sites.
How We Rate MLS Betting Sites
Not just any online sportsbook can make our list of the top MLS betting sites. Our team of experts considers a variety of factors in rating each website we review. Only those legal sites that excel in each of our key areas can appear on our recommended list.
Types of MLS Bets
Betting sites offer many different ways to bet on Major League Soccer throughout the season. Here’s a breakdown of the key bet types you should be aware of.
A moneyline bet is a simple wager on the result of a soccer match. You can bet on either team winning, or on the game ending in a draw. A typical moneyline market will look something like this:
New York Red Bulls: -200
Philadelphia Union: +430
Be aware that you must get the result exactly right to win; otherwise, the bet is a loss. This is different than in many sports, where a tie or a draw results in a push. Keep in mind that soccer bets normally pay out based on the 90 minutes of normal play plus any stoppage time; any extra time periods or shootouts are not considered.
In spread betting, one team is given a handicap that will be applied to the final score. Here’s a quick example:
Seattle Sounders (-1): +160
Handicap Draw: +250
Vancouver Whitecaps (+1): +150
In this example, a bet on Seattle only wins if the Sounders win by at least two goals. Meanwhile, a bet on Vancouver wins if the Whitecaps either win the game or draw. The handicap draw would pay out if Seattle wins by exactly one goal. Spreads sometimes include half-goals (such as -1.5) in order to avoid the possibility of a draw.
In an over/under bet, you must predict whether the total number of goals will be over or under the listed total. For instance:
Over 2.5 Goals: -150
Under 2.5 Goals: +125
If three or more goals are scored, the over wins; if two or less are scored, the under wins.
Future bets ask you to predict the outcome of a tournament or season. For instance, you might see the following market for the winner of the MLS Cup:
Toronto FC: +600
Atlanta United: +750
Seattle Sounders: +800
Philadelphia Union: +1000
These futures odds will change throughout the season, based on how teams are performing, injuries, and other factors.
How Can I Bet on MLS?
If you’re not sure how to bet on MLS games, don’t worry: it’s easy to get started. Here’s a step-by-step guide to placing your first bet.
Our MLS Soccer Betting Tips
MLS betting is similar to gambling on other soccer leagues, but it does have its own quirks. Here are a few of our best tips for betting on Major League Soccer.
A League of Parity
Most major soccer leagues worldwide have a few big clubs that dominate the rest of the competition. That’s not the case in MLS, where competitive balance rules keep teams on relatively equal footing. That means you should be wary of big favorites in most cases, as upsets are common.
While home field advantage matters in all soccer leagues, it can be critical in MLS, where teams may have to fly thousands of miles from coast to coast to play away matches. If a team has been traveling a lot in recent weeks, it’s worth considering that when evaluating the odds on a game.
The Playoff Push
Unlike European leagues, the team with the best record doesn’t necessarily win at the end of the MLS season. Instead, clubs then compete in a playoff for the MLS Cup. Teams will run out their best possible lineups for all playoff matches, and you should expect maximum effort – meaning the best squads are more likely to come out on top.
MLS History and Format
Major League Soccer began play in 1996 as a 10-team league based entirely in the United States. In the early years, DC United was the dominant club, winning the MLS Cup in three of the first four seasons.
MLS struggled in its early years, nearly folding in 2001 before an infusion of financing kept the league alive.
In the years that followed, the league altered its rules to be in line with international standards, put teams in soccer-specific stadiums, and added a designated player rule that allowed teams to sign international stars.
That rule paid off when David Beckham signed for the LA Galaxy in 2007. Other stars like Thierry Henry and Wayne Rooney followed in his boots by joining the league in the later years of their playing careers.
Today, the league features 26 teams – including three based in Canada – with plans to expand to 30. Teams are divided into Eastern and Western Conferences, and play a 34-game regular season. 14 teams reach the MLS Cup Playoffs, a knockout postseason tournament that crowns the MLS Cup winner.
Unlike most international soccer leagues, the MLS season runs from spring to fall, rather than through the winter. MLS is also unique in that it does not utilize a relegation and promotion system.
MLS Betting FAQs
There are a number of great sites that offer betting on MLS, though no one site is perfect for every player. Take a look at our list of the top MLS betting sites to find an online sportsbook that’s right for you.
Yes, all of our recommended betting sites offer mobile betting, allowing you to place your bets on your phone, tablet, or other mobile device.
Making a profit in MLS betting takes patience, bankroll management, and research into the league to find the best bets with the most value – the same formula necessary to win at any form of sports betting.