The Best Teams In The MLS (Ranking All-Time History)

The Best Teams In The MLS (Ranking All-Time History)

Welcome to our ultimate list of the very best Major League Soccer teams of all time. We have selected teams that lit up the league in a single season, rather than focusing on dynasties or franchises that have enjoyed continued success over several decades. These are the specific teams that we feel represented the absolute pinnacle of MLS quality since the league began:

5. Toronto FC, 2017

Toronto FC became the first Canadian team to win the Supporters’ Shield when they secured a 4-2 victory over New York Red Bulls in 2017. They got the better of the Red Bulls and Columbus Crew in the playoffs, before easing to a 2-0 victory over Seattle Sounders in the MLS Cup final. They scored the third largest regular season goals tally in MLS history thanks to the devastating strike partnership of Italian veteran Sebastian Giovinco and the electric Jozy Altidore. They were defensively solid, and a midfield led by Michael Bradley and Jonathan Osorio was magnificent.

4. Columbus Crew, 2008

Columbus Crew finished 11 points clear of their closest rivals to clinch the Eastern Conference in 2008, winning the Supporters’ Shield in the process. They then swept their opponents aside in the playoffs to seize the MLS Cup, vindicating a major rebuilding exercise under head coach Sigi Schmid. This team did not boast many superstars – although veteran Argentinian forward Guillermo Schelotto scored 12 goals and provided 19 assists in 27 games – but it epitomized teamwork and diligence. It did not enjoy a particularly astounding statistical season, but it overcame several obstacles and Schmid formed a team that was far greater than the sum of its parts.

3. D.C. United, 1999

D.C. United kicked off a dynasty by winning the MLS Cup in 1996 and 1997. In 1998, D.C. United and LA Galaxy set a joint record for the most wins in an MLS season, with 24 apiece. D.C. United scored 74 goals that season, and it was the heavy favorite to win a third consecutive MLS Cup, but it suffered a shock defeat to Chicago Fire. However, it bounced back by winning the CONCACAF Champions’ Cup, becoming the first MLS team to win a CONCACAF tournament, and that set the springboard for a tremendous 1999 campaign. D.C. United won one fewer regular season game, with 23 victories, but it easily claimed the Supporters Shield and then obliterated its opponents in the playoffs. The squad disbanded after that triumph following the introduction of a strict salary cap, but fans will look back fondly to the superteam led by Roy Lassiter and Jaime Moreno.

2. Atlanta United, 2018

The Five Stripes blazed a trail of destruction across the MLS in 2018. It was only the second year of existence for this expansion franchise, but former Barcelona manager Gerardo Martino had a wealth of talent at his disposal. From Brad Guzan in goal to Josef Martinez and Miguel Almirón in attack, this team was stacked with star quality. They won 21 games and scored 70 goals throughout the regular season, before beating New York City in the playoff semifinals. They came up against the Red Bulls – a team that finished two points ahead of them in the regular season – in the conference final, and surged to a 3-1 aggregate victory, before destroying Portland in the MLS Cup final.

1. LA Galaxy, 2014

There have been many great LA Galaxy teams over the years. They set regular season records in 1998, won the CONCACAF Champions’ Cup in 2000, completed a Supporters’ Shield and MLS Cup double in 2002 and won two MLS Cups during the David Beckham era. Yet the 2014 LA Galaxy was the best of the bunch. It did not have high-profile superstars like Steven Gerrard, Ashley Cole or Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who have graced the franchise over the years, but it did have Robbie Keane and Landon Donovan operating at the peak of their powers in attack. They ripped their opponents apart with gleeful abandon, before scraping past a very strong Seattle Sounders team in the conference final and beating New England to claim the MLS Cup.
  • William Hill Casino

    $500 Risk Free Bet

    To be eligible for this Promotion, all eligible Patrons must place their first real money sports wager via the William Hill mobile app or desktop site, within 7 days of opening a William Hill NJ Account. If their Qualifying Wager is graded as a Loss the Participant will earn a one-time Free Bet token equal to the lessor of: 1) The full value of the Qualifying Wager or 2) $500 (“Free Bet(s).
  • 888 Sport

    $500 Welcome Bonus

    Player must be at least 21 years old, located in New Jersey, has completed the full registration process with us.888sport.com, makes a first deposit equal to or greater than $10 and may be entitled to a Welcome Bonus of 100% up to $500 on the players first deposit at us.888sport.com.
  • Unibet Sportsbook

    Play Now

    Join Unibet Sportsbook today and once you add funds, we'll insure your first cash bet - get up to $500 back if you don't hit a winner. Make your first cash bet on any event. If your first settled cash bet loses, you will receive a refund to your account equal to the amount of your losing wager (up to $500). Your first cash bet ($10 or over) will qualify. You will receive the refund within 72 hours.
  • Sugar House

    100% Up To $250 Deposit Match Bonus

    Player must create a new account, make a first deposit up to $250 to get a Deposit Match Bonus. Use code 250MATCH.
  • FanDuel Sportsbook Review

    $500 Risk Free Bet

    New Sportsbook Customers Only NJ. Join FanDuel Sportsbook today and make your first bet. If you lose, we'll give you a refund of up to $500 in site credit (within 72h). Your first bet will qualify (If you have multiple selections on one betslip, it will be the first selection you made)
  • Draft Kings Sportsbook

    Get a deposit bonus up to $500!

    Join Draft Kings today and with your first deposit of $5 or more, you will receive a free $3 ticket to play in any $3 paid contest. A user’s first deposit (min. $5) made between 5/13/20 – 8/17/20 qualifies the user to receive up to $500 in bonus funds in the form of site credits that can only be used on DraftKings. Bonus amount is equal to 20% of that deposit amount, not to exceed $500 (the user must deposit $2,500 to be eligible to receive the maximum possible bonus amount of $500).
  • Caesars

    $300 Free Bet

    Make your first deposit using SPORTS300 and we will match your first sports bet up to $300! Cash bet must have minimum odds of -200. On Parlay wagers, each legs must have odds of -200 or greater.
  • Bet America

    Bet $50 Get $50 [code: BET50]

    Join BetAmerica today for an exclusive Bet $50 and Get $50 using code [BET50] on your next sports bet. Register today and enjoy our Freeplay contests where you can use your sports and casino knowledge to win $1000's in prizes every week.

Latest news