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North American Parity Index - June 2017

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North American Parity Index
Kreg Asay

As most soccer fans are well aware, FIFA keeps a ranking of every national team. It’s primary purpose is to determine seeding draws in official FIFA competitions such as the World Cup; though each confederation also use it in similar fashion for their own championship matches, qualifiers, and other competitions.

FIFA uses a complex mathematical formula to calculate the rankings after every game; these are calculated on everything from rank of opponent, difficulty (which is based on what confederation the each team is from), importance of the match (friendly, or tournament), and of course end result of the match. The points are cumulative over a 4 year span.

Points=Result * Importance * Opponent (FIFA rank - 200) * Confederation

There are a handful of sites that make an attempt at it. Football Database Rankings is one, Club World Ranking is another. Their methods are similar to FIFA’s, but of course are adapted to club-level.

As part of my weekly Power Ranking Averages articles, I have at times attempted a sort of “FIFA-esque” ranking using various methods of calculation; none have really worked great. Ultimately I thought to myself, it would be great to make a full table for North American teams to show how Liga MX, Ascenso (Mexican 2nd division), MLS, NASL, and USL compare. Naturally that’s quite a tall order, not to mention a very big spreadsheet. To adapt the FIFA method, or the versions used by the above sites is also a major undertaking, which frankly I (being a lowly amateur writer doing this for fun) would be hard pressed to complete.

Thus I give you a “FIFA Lite” version for North America. First a caveat - these rankings are not based on individual results, it is entirely based on points earned in league play, national cups (Copa MX, USOC and Canadian), league playoffs, and champions league. I’ve gone back to track the last 5 years worth of points per game for each league (Liga MX, Ascenso, MLS, NASL, and USL). Leagues are adjusted based on difficulty from a poll of fans to gauge how they compare:

  • Liga MX 81%
  • CCL 76.7%
  • MLS 67.8%
  • CopaMX 64.4%
  • Ascenso MX 55.3%
  • USOC 45.6%
  • USL 38.3%
  • NASL 36.7%
  • Canadian Cup 14.4%

So my calculation is thus:

Team 5 year Points Per Game * Competition Multiplier.

  • Teams that have been in more than one league during the time period tracked (5 years), are listed with an * next to the league they are currently in.
  • Teams that have re-branded during the time period tracked (5 years), or changed names are listed with a # after their current name.

North American Club Rankings

Team League 2016 2017
Team League 2016 2017
Altamira Ascenso 515.585 144.256
Athletico San Luis Ascenso* 880.143 381.248
Atlante Ascenso* 809.066 807.99
BUAP Ascenso 795.998 732.816
Celaya Ascenso 564.256 576.247
Coras# Ascenso 499.219 673.792
Correcaminos UAT Ascenso 797.412 709.499
Cruz Azul Hidalgo Ascenso 307.769 139.104
Delfines FC Ascenso 247.821 161
Estudiantes Tecos Ascenso 368.753 185.472
Irapuato Ascenso 469.616 182.896
Juarez Ascenso 197.687 377.237
La Piedad Ascenso 344.281 64.4
Merida Ascenso 791.735 367.08
Murcielagos Ascenso 197.841 251.482
Neza Ascenso 380.289 85.652
Oaxaca Ascenso 654.5 774.074
Sinaloa Ascenso* 863.511 742.873
Sonora Ascenso 33.18 168.854
Tampico Madero Ascenso 0 53.641
Tapachula Ascenso 197.687 257.964
UAEM Ascenso 0 137.333
Universidad de Colima Ascenso 0 45.346
Universidad de Guadalajara Ascenso* 795.925 751.118
Venados Ascenso 219.261 292.32
Zacatecas# Ascenso* 583.247 697.97
Zacatepec Ascenso 309.029 352.163
America Liga MX 1888.883 1682.771
Atlas Liga MX 1019.962 901.758
Chiapas Liga MX 939.45 818.79
Cruz Azul Liga MX 1552.336 1322.8
Guadalajara Liga MX 1183.141 1098.398
Monterrey Liga MX 1195.362 1144.319
Morelia Liga MX 1680.25 1440.148
Pachuca Liga MX 1149.634 923.886
Puebla Liga MX 971.264 884.206
Pumas UNAM Liga MX 1563.401 1436.988
Queretaro Liga MX 1078.672 980.298
Santos Laguna Liga MX 1189.903 930.913
Tigres UANL Liga MX 1397.951 1287.829
Tijuana Liga MX 1714.782 1459.785
Toluca Liga MX 1398.288 1273.595
Leon Liga MX* 1311.686 1353.912
Necaxa Liga MX* 1473.436 1510.742
Veracruz Liga MX* 804.692 830.723
Atlanta United MLS 0 87.462
Chicago Fire MLS 849.366 862.248
Colorado Rapids MLS 702.774 628.272
Columbus Crew MLS 740.742 730.572
DC United MLS 1167.495 1055.703
FC Dallas MLS 1064.29 1212.562
Houston Dynamo MLS 1037.999 882.565
LA Galaxy MLS 1374.748 1220.149
Minnesota United MLS* 508.755 439.48
Montreal Impact MLS 891.196 910.342
NE Revolution MLS 756.948 777.288
New York FC MLS 181.704 290.184
NY Red Bulls MLS 1110.449 1056.669
Orlando City SC MLS* 846.761 795.687
Philadelphia Union MLS 954.924 857.748
Portland Timbers MLS 1109.966 1150.646
Real Salt Lake MLS 1155.977 967.512
San Jose Earthquakes MLS 843.796 707.17
Seattle Sounders MLS 1318.831 991.877
Sporting Kansas City MLS 1371.253 1219.537
Toronto FC MLS 606.618 578.322
Vancouver Whitecaps MLS 893.63 980.29
Atlanta Silverbacks NASL* 402.348 239.4
FC Edmonton NASL 376.608 377.342
Fort Lauderdale Strikers # NASL* 475.014 188.271
Indy Eleven NASL 276.994 300.482
Jacksonville Armada NASL 140.699 272.59
Miami FC NASL 45.875 262.681
New York Cosmos NASL 555.089 611.974
North Carolina FC # NASL 618.397 661.428
Puerto Rico Islanders NASL 81.107 51.013
San Francisco Deltas NASL 0 193.685
Bethlehem Steel FC USL 35.619 80.813
Charleston Battery USL 694.383 781.933
Charlotte Independence USL 289.73 407.92
Colorado Springs Switchbacks USL 307.641 430.81
FC Cincinnati USL 140.021 323.93
Harrisburg City Islanders USL 620.351 630.422
LA Galaxy II USL 259.9 285.561
Louisville City FC USL 301.693 442.863
NY Red Bulls II USL 145.54 199.926
OKC Energy FC USL 413.575 599.016
Orange County SC # USL 328.84 465.64
Orlando City B USL 44.811 95.75
Ottawa Fury USL* 169.728 263.807
Phoenix Rising FC # USL 324.29 450.14
Pittsburgh Riverhounds USL 465.28 485.196
Portland Timbers 2 USL 167.214 179.087
Real Monarchs USL 154.192 259.517
Reno 1868 FC USL 0 131.212
Richmond Kickers USL 712.384 612.961
Rio Grande Valley Toros USL 65.11 124.475
Rochester Rhinos USL 729.349 797.366
Sacramento Republic USL 454.939 635.784
Saint Louis FC USL 248.073 442.323
San Antonio FC USL 139.841 299.395
Seattle Sounders 2 USL 193.461 243.634
Swope Park Rangers USL 61.28 116.432
Tampa Bay Rowdies USL* 473.89 485.759
Toronto FC II USL 64.727 88.473
Tulsa Roughnecks USL 145.766 340.016
Vancouver Whitecaps 2 USL 98.431 143.242

If you’d like to see other leagues represented, suggest them in the comments below and I’ll try to add them for the next update.