Major League Soccer has been around for more than 25 years now, but thanks to the rapidly improving quality of the soccer played, MLS is really coming into its own. Here in Canada, Toronto FC, CF Montréal and the Vancouver Whitecaps FC have loyal fan bases that are growing every season. In fact, the MLS brand of soccer is starting to reach every corner of the country.
With single-game betting revolutionizing Canadian sports betting, and at least Ontario keen to open its sports betting markets to private online sportsbooks, MLS betting is growing alongside the hundreds of new MLS betting opportunities available. Below is a look at how to get in on it in Canada, including live MLS game odds from top online sportsbooks, tips on soccer betting, and more.
How to bet on MLS in Canada
MLS betting can involve three-way or 1×2 betting, which means there are moneyline game markets where you can bet on three possible outcomes: a home team win, an away team win or a draw. Plus, there’s double chance betting, where you can cover two out of three possible outcomes with one bet.
Correct score betting pays big odds when you can correctly predict exactly how a game will end, and three-way spread betting requires you to factor a spread into the final score. Additionally, MLS totals betting is when you place an over/under wager at varying odds regarding the total number of goals in a game.
When it comes to goals, you can also bet on both teams scoring (GG) or one or both not scoring (NG). Plus, MLS sports betting features various other props that let you bet on individual and team stat lines, alongside the number of cards and corners. Finally, online sportsbooks offer live MLS betting where you can place bets during games at odds that change alongside the action on the field.
It’s easy to read MLS betting lines because each moneyline, double chance and spread bet is listed separately, with odds on the three possible outcomes clearly displayed. Other types of bets will also clearly display odds for each potential outcome.
Canadian MLS club odds
Canada has three MLS clubs you can bet on:
- Home stadium: BMO Field (capacity 30,000)
- Location: Toronto, Ontario
- Owner: Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment
- Top stars: Jozy Altidore, Ayo Akinola, Alejandro Pozuelo
- 2020: Second in Eastern Conference; first-round playoff loss
- Best season: 2017 Supporters’ Shield and MLS Cup
- Latest odds: Toronto FC odds
CF Montréal (formerly Montreal Impact)
- Home stadium: Saputo Stadium (capacity 19,619)
- Location: Montreal, Québec
- Owner: Joey Saputo
- Top stars: Romell Quioto, Bojan Krkić
- 2020: Ninth in Eastern Conference; play-in-round loss
- Best season: 2016 Conference Final loss to Toronto FC
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
- Home stadium: BC Place (soccer capacity 22,120)
- Location: Vancouver, BC
- Owners: Greg Kerfoot, Steve Luczo, Jeff Mallett, Steve Nash
- Top stars: Lucas Cavallini, Fredy Montero
- 2020: Ninth in Western Conference
- Best season: 2014 MLS Best Canadian Team
Live MLS betting and apps
Single-game betting also brings live soccer betting to Canada, meaning you can bet on MLS games that are already underway. For the most part, the bets are similar to the ones you can bet on before a game, at odds that change with the action on the field, based on things like time, score and momentum.
Live MLS soccer betting is a fun way to increase your personal interest in any game, hedge your winning bets or make up for betting mistakes. However, it all happens pretty fast, the odds shift rapidly, and online sportsbook apps are a necessity to keep up.
MLS player props & futures
Single-game betting opens the door to MLS futures and props. This means betting on everything from who will win the MLS Cup this season to who will score the first goal in the next Toronto FC game. Here are some popular MLS futures markets:
- MLS Cup
- Supporter’s Shield
- To make the playoffs
- Team win totals
- To win a conference
- Scoring leader
- Assist leader
- Landon Donovan MVP Award
MLS props also likely include the following, depending on the sportsbook:
- Player to score/get a card/score with a header
- First/last goal team/scorer
- Moneyline combinations
- Correct score group
- Winning margin
- Both teams to score (GG)
- One or both teams not to score (NG)
MLS playoff odds
The MLS postseason is referred to as the MLS Cup Playoffs. It is a single-elimination tournament culminating in the MLS Cup league championship game. The seven highest placed teams from both the Eastern Conference and the Western Conference qualify.
The tournament plays out through a traditional two-sided and seeded single-elimination tournament bracket. Although, the top seed in each conference gets a first-round bye and meets the winner of the fourth and fifth seed game in the Conference Semifinals.
The MLS Cup Playoffs are typically scheduled to begin in late Fall. The MLS Cup league championship game is scheduled directly after. You can bet on things like the MLS Cup winner, any team to make the playoffs, or win their conference all year long through MLS futures markets. All of the MLS betting options and game lines listed above are also available in the MLS Cup Playoffs.
MLS betting trends
Here are some facts of note about the MLS today that you may want to consider when betting on the league:
- The New York Red Bulls have qualified for the MLS Cup playoffs for 11 straight years (as of 2021). That’s the second longest active streak in the league and in the history of the league, next to the Seattle Sounders’ 12 straight. However, the Red Bulls have never won the MLS Cup, while the Sounders have become the class of the league, winning the MLS Cup in 2016 and 2019 and making the playoffs every year the team has been in the league.
- A Canadian team has won the MLS Cup: Toronto FC in 2017. Toronto also won the Supporters’ Shield as the team with the league’s best regular season record that year. In fact, betting against Toronto FC is probably a bad idea these days. The team finished second overall in 2020 and has made the MLS Cup the past two seasons.
- The LA Galaxy have won a record five MLS Cups. However, they haven’t won since 2014. MLS legend Landon Donovan was on four of those Galaxy teams, and he’s retired now. The team did not even qualify for the playoffs in 2020 and has gone from perennial MLS Cup favourites to the kind of team you can consistently bet against.
Recent MLS winners and results
Here are some results from the past five MLS seasons:
|Year||MLS Cup winner||Supporters’ Shield winner||MVP||Top scorer|
|2020||Columbus Crew SC||Philadelphia Union||Alejandro Pozuelo||Diego Rossi|
|2019||Seattle Sounders||Los Angeles FC||Carlos Vela||Carlos Vela|
|2018||Atlanta United FC||New York Red Bulls||Josef Martínez||Josef Martínez|
|2017||Toronto FC||Toronto FC||Diego Valeri||Nemanja Nikolić|
|2016||Seattle Sounders||FC Dallas||David Villa||Bradley Wright-Phillips|
Top Canadian players in MLS
In 2020, a total of 39 Canadians played in at least one MLS game. No fewer than 10 played for US-based MLS teams. There used to be a rule that designated American players as “domestic” whether they played in Canada or the US, but made Canadian players “internationals” if they played for a US-based MLS team. The league dumped it in 2017.
There have now been 121 Canadian players in MLS through the league’s first 25 years, but more than half of them have played over the past four years. The Whitecaps, Toronto FC and Montreal still have more Canadians than most (29), but Canadian players continue to have an impact all across Major League Soccer.
Alphonso Davies was Canada Soccer’s Men’s Player of the Year in 2020, but he plays in Germany for Bayern Munich. Canadian MLS stars include Jonathan Osorio, who has been with Toronto FC since 2013 and holds the club record for most appearances. Plus, Mark-Anthony Kaye has been with Los Angeles FC since the franchise got off the ground. The midfielder appeared in 16 games in 2020, scoring three times. Finally, goalkeeper Dayne St. Clair posted six shutouts for Minnesota United FC in his rookie year in 2020, putting him among Canada’s biggest rising MLS stars.
Here are the Canadian Men’s National Team players who play in MLS:
- Tesho Akindele
- Theo Bair
- Zachary Brault-Guillard
- Lucas Cavallini
- Jay Chapman
- Derek Cornelius
- Maxime Crépeau
- Raheem Edwards
- Liam Fraser
- Mark-Anthony Kaye
- Richie Laryea
- Kamal Miller
- Ashtone Morgan
- Jayden Nelson
- Noble Okello
- Jonathan Osorio
- Samuel Piette
- Tosaint Ricketts
- Jacob Shaffelburg
- Ballou Tabla
- Russell Teibert
How do MLS odds in Canada compare to Vegas odds?
We’re going to let you in on a little secret here: Most sportsbooks don’t employ an MLS expert to set game lines and odds for them. They just copy them from one another, which means that most MLS game lines start out the same at every sportsbook, from online sportsbooks in Canada to Las Vegas retail sportsbooks inside some of the world’s fanciest casinos.
The lines aim to draw an equal amount of betting to each side. That way, sportsbooks can make money through the vig without sweating the game. However, if a sportsbook is taking in more money on one side, that sportsbook will move the line to try to get back to even betting. But only that sportsbook’s line moves. Others keep the original lines. That’s why an MLS line might start the same everywhere, but end up a little different at online sportsbooks in Canada versus Vegas sportsbooks.
How to watch MLS online in Canada
You can stream every MLS game live and on-demand online through the subscription streaming service DAZN.
Various MLS games also air on TV via TSN. Toronto FC regional matches are split between TSN and Sportsnet. TSN has the rights to Vancouver Whitecaps FC regional matches. CF Montréal games air on TSN2.