SEBA Projections

Updated SEBA Projections through October 2

Welcome to the Statistical Extrapolation Bayesian Analyzer Projection System, which is, of course, a tortured gathering of words used to form the SEBA Projection System.

The system consists of a model projecting the probabilities of game results and then a barrage of simulations which account for the remaining luck. So the probabilities you see below show, essentially, what the odds are of an outcome if the team continues to play like it has been.

Below are the current season forecasts using data from games through October 2, 2016.

Power Rankings

The “Power Rankings” we concoct are the actual “strength” of the team according to competitive expectations. They are computed showing average expected points result if every team in MLS played every team both home and away.

SEBA has the Union remaining at No. 7. ESPN has Philadelphia declining one spot to No. 7, At SI drops them two spots to No. 11, and Soccer America drops them three spots to No. 15.


Playoffs probability and more

The following charts show the probabilities for making the playoffs, winning the Supporters’ Shield, winning the MLS Cup, winning the USOC Cup, and qualification for CONCACAF Champions League.

The Union declined to 96.3% from 99.7% last week in their probability of making the playoffs. They have fallen behind Montreal in rankings of playoff likelihood.

While Philadelphia’s poor run recently has hurt their odds of a lot happening, it has not seriously hurt their playoff odds. While it is true they could miss the playoffs (and even finish as low as eighth in the Eastern Conference), this is extremely unlikely and requires bad luck as well as continued bad results.

On the other hand, the Union have no chance for a bye and their chance for hosting a first-round match is now improbable seeing as the 6th playoff spot is the most likely scenario. Getting a double-win at home against Orlando and NYRB would help tremendously in obtaining a critical home match in the first round. The home match is particularly important seeing as home field advantage dictates an enormous amount of result-prediction and as the following two playoff rounds (should the Union make them) don’t offer much in the way of home field advantage unless you subscribe to the idea that the order in which you play a home-away aggregate series is important.mlsgraphs2016-10-03-page-006

Philadelphia has no chance at the Supporters’ Shield.


The Union decreased from 5.1% last week to 3.8% in their odds of capturing the MLS Cup.


Philadelphia’s probability of qualifying for the CONCACAF Champions League has declined to 3.8% from 6.6%. Philadelphia’s sole opportunity to qualify is now tied to winning the MLS Cup.


Philadelphia finishing

The following shows the probability of various playoff categories and Philadelphia’s probability of each of them.


The following is a “density” chart showing the relative probability of Philadelphia finishing at the different after-playoffs rankings from 1 to 20.


The following is the list of Philadelphia’s remaining scheduled matches accompanied by result probabilities as predicted by SEBA.


The charts below show the average results of all the simulations and the probabilities associated with all of the above. The chart is broken up into two parts in order to better fit on your screen.

(Note: CCLAlternate refers to qualifying for CONCACAF Champions League non-traditionally. U.S. teams qualify by winning the MLS Cup, winning the Supporters’ Shield, winning the Conference in the regular season, and by winning the U.S. Open Cup. If a Canadian team wins any of these or a U.S. team wins more than one, the extra slots are filled by top regular season performers. Also, “regSeasConfWin” refers to finishing the conference in first place AND not winning other CCL slots like MLS Cup, Supporters’ Shield, and USOC)



Changes Over Time

This chart shows how Philadelphia’s chances at each of the outcomes has evolved over the course of the season.


This shows the evolution of Philadelphia’s movement within SEBA and other media outlets’ power rankings.


This shows the MLS Eastern Conference’s power rankings’ evolution in SEBA throughout the season.


USL Projections

With the USL now in postseason play, Bethlehem remained at 25th and the Harrisburg City Islanders remained at 22nd.



Changes over time

Below shows the evolution of SEBA’s power rankings for Bethlehem Steel FC and the Harrisburg City Islanders.


Below shows SEBA’s power rankings evolution for the USL East over the course of the season


NWSL Projections





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