Rivalry Week shakes up the rankings

Seven unanswered goals at Yankee Stadium gave the New York Red Bulls a nine position boost in the Sportify Power Rankings. Now in the sixth position, the Red Bulls’ performance against the nicknameless NYCFC was cause for celebration after the team’s poor performance at D.C. United earlier in the week.

In the West, the LA Galaxy dropped to third behind the Colorado Rapids and FC Dallas with a draw in the Cali Clásico after having spent four consecutive weeks in the top position. Colorado now leads the power rankings for the first time this season and for the first time since Week 32 of the 2013 season. (We’ll soon share an interactive tool with data going back to 2011. Stay tuned!)

The two lowest ranked teams, Houston Dynamo and Chicago Fire, faced each other, but Chicago’s victory did not result in a move for either team.

MLSWeek11
Data provided by Opta

The method: The Elo rating system
Elo ratings are a calculation of performance in head-to-head competitions originally developed for chess. This method has been used to rate a variety of competitions, including soccer. For each team, the calculation considers final scores, margin of victory, home field advantage and strength of schedule.

Sportify builds on existing ELO methodology, improving the season starting rating by using a combination of a proportion of a team’s rating in the previous season and a proportion of the league’s average rating. Wins always add points and losses always deduct points. Unexpected results, such as the upset of a strong team by a lower rated team, cause a greater fluctuation in points compared to “expected” results.