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Five Thirty Eight unveils Top 426 soccer clubs in the world

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Advanced statistical site Five Thirty Eight has put together a weekly ranking of the top and bottom club teams in the world, and its algorithm gives us a theoretical answer into where Major League Soccer fits into the club soccer landscape.

[ MORE: Julian Green back on transfer market ]

At its very base level, the rankings will give reason to check back all season. Can Manchester United break into the Top Three? Will an MLS side leap into the Top 100? Can the worst American club avoid the bottom slot?

Here’s the list of clubs, and Five Thirty Eight has also gone through the trouble of giving its statistical analysis of who’s best set-up to win leagues and even games.

A note on the methodology:

We’re using recent matches played between teams from different leagues, supplemented with league market values (from Transfermarkt), to assign a strength rating to every league that we’re forecasting. Our new league ratings also give us the ability to a calculate a global Soccer Power Index (SPI) rating for each team — a number from 0 to 100 that represents the overall strength of each team.

The Premier League and La Liga combine for six of the Top Ten teams in the world, with Real Madrid No. 1 and Man City, Manchester United, and Chelsea running Nos. 7, 8, and 9.

Brighton and Hove Albion is the lowest ranked Premier League club, 188th in the world. The only PL sides outside the Top 125 are the three promoted clubs. Swansea is 113th, the lowest (or highest) ranked PL side aside from the new promotions.

Brighton is 17 spots below MLS’ top representative: Toronto FC. The same web site ranked MLS as the 28th best league in the world earlier this month, between Denmark and Croatia.

New York City FC shows up next, at 259, then rivals New York Red Bulls at 267. The bulk of MLS clubs fit between 320 and 422, where Minnesota United brings up the rear. The study ranks 426 teams, with three Scottish clubs running 424-426.

[ MORE: Man City 1-1 Everton | 3 things ]

As for some other odds, Five Thirty Eight gives Manchester United the best odds to win the league at 31 percent, with Man City, Chelsea, and Spurs joining them with the best odds to place in the Top Four.

The average simulated season has United besting rivals City by two points, with 80. Tottenham (72) tops Arsenal (68) for fourth by four points, while No. 6 Liverpool finishes 10 points clear of Merseyside rivals Everton (57 points).

It’s no surprise that the three promoted clubs — Huddersfield Town, Newcastle, and Brighton — are the top bets to be relegated, with Bournemouth, Crystal Palace, and Swansea City the next best bets to find life in the Championship.

Other notes:

— Manchester United is the fourth-best defensive team in the Premier League, behind only Atletico Madrid, Bayern Munich, and Juventus.

— Spurs are also in the Top Ten amongst defensive teams, a 8.

— Man City is the best offensive team in the PL, seventh in the world.

— Watford is this week’s highest PL riser, up 22 spots.

— MLS side Chicago Fire suffered the fourth biggest drop in the world this week (40 spots).

Five Thirty Eight is one of the best predictive web sites in the world, and one of the only ones who gave more than an outside shot (though still ranking it a long shot) of the 2016 United States presidential election turning out for the winner of the electoral college. So this is certainly food for thought.

Premier League Power Rankings: Chelsea awaits its crown

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The Premier League Power Rankings include a remarkably muddled middle, with so many teams still harboring top half hopes thanks to significant drop-offs from clubs like West Bromwich Albion.

Let’s see where we stand ahead of the final two weeks of fixtures.

[ MORE: Mourinho reacts to UEL semi win ]

200px-Middlesbrough_crest 20 (19) Middlesbrough: Officially relegated, Boro drops a spot (and, yeah, Sunderland winning a match helped the move, too).
source: 19 (20) Sunderland: Beginning the race for re-promotion with a win over desperate Hull City. It’s something.
Hull City logo 18 (17) Hull City: Still not sure the loss to Sunderland actually happened.
source: 17 (18) Swansea City: Gylfi Sigurdsson calling upon the spirit of Iceland, and Fernando Llorente continues to come good at the right time.
source: 16 (11) Crystal Palace: Three-straight losses, two to Premier League powers, could have the Eagles in a precarious spot should Hull take three points at Selhurst Park this weekend.
source: 15 (10) Watford: Thumped by Leicester to walk its losing streak to three.
source: 14 (14) West Bromwich Albion: When the preseason goal is clearly “survive”, should it be any surprise when the Baggies start yawning soon after the 40-point mark?
13 (14) Burnley: Sean Dyche has the Clarets primed for another Premier League season. Unlike West Brom, this is a fine preseason goal come good.
source: 12 (16) Stoke City: The PL’s muddled middle is keeping a top half finish possible for Mark Hughes‘ Potters.
source: 11 (9) Southampton: The Arsenal loss is no shame, and Saints’ shutout of Liverpool was pretty good, too.
source: 10 (12) Bournemouth: The wins over Boro and Sunderland were nice (and important), but the 2-2 draw with Stoke shows that Eddie Howe remains in control of the Cherries’ upward growth.
logo_westham 9 (15) West Ham United: Unbeaten in five with four clean sheets since the 3-0 loss to Arsenal.
8 (6) Everton: It’s probably difficult to play with desperation when you’re dead set in 7th, but we still expect more from Ronald Koeman‘s bunch.
7 (8) Leicester City: With respect to the Craig Shakespeare effect, we can’t help but wonder if the Foxes would still be competing for a spot in Europe if Wilfried Ndidi was signed in August instead of January.
source: 6 (5) Manchester United: See: The Red Devils can lose. They just need to play a second-tier lineup and be focused on a match in the future.
source: 5 (7) Arsenal: With the odds very long, the Gunners are finally piling up wins. Too little, too late for the Top Four?
source: 4 (3) Liverpool: Disappointing draw, even given Saints’ dogged defense.
Logo_Manchester_City 3 (4) Manchester City: Back in the win column with style, cruising past Palace 5-0.
source: 2 (2) Tottenham Hotspur: Everyone loses (besides Celtic) every now and then.
source: 1 (1) Chelsea: Will be popping champagne come Friday unless West Brom reverses form in fabulous fashion.

Premier League Power Rankings: Jumbled at the top

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Few people truly believe Spurs will catch Chelsea in the race for the Premier League title, but that’s not what Power Rankings are about, are they?

[ MORE: PL Player Power Rankings archive ]

Not to us. Our PLPR’s have always been about how a team’s current form melds into their overall season, and that just may be enough for us to put a new team up top for the first time in a while.

That’s if we don’t change our mind by the time we finish filling out the chart…

20 (20) Sunderland: Stewing on their plight through the weekend, and daydreaming of burying derby mates Middlesbrough next time out.
200px-Middlesbrough_crest 19 (19) Middlesbrough: Single-handedly making the argument for offense, Boro’s decent defense hasn’t been helped nearly enough by those outside of Alvaro Negredo.
18 (18) Swansea City: Guidolin goes defense? Swans lose. Bradley goes for broke? Swans lose. Clement tries a bunch of things? Swans show signs of life for a bit… but only a bit. Swans lose.
Hull City logo 17 (16) Hull City: #BeTwoPointsBetterThanSwansea doesn’t go great on a shirt or a Tweet, but it’s the strategy.
16 (15) West Ham United: Need a summer of rest and a transfer window in a bad way.
source: 15 (13) Bournemouth: After a 3-week gauntlet of Liverpool, Chelsea, and Spurs, “Home to Boro” probably looks amazing on the fixture list.

14 (14) Burnley: If there was a home Champions League (6th best record), Burnley would be headed for Europe. Only problem? The Clarets are two losses away from a winless season away from Turf Moor.
source: T-11 (12) Crystal Palace: Tip of the cap to ol’ Sam Allardyce. We just wish he was willing to take a little bit of credit.
source: T-11 (17) Stoke City: Finally back in the win column, Stoke rises
10 (10) Leicester City: With the Champions League era over, can we all agree that Leicester, unfettered by Europe, will probably win the league next season? Arsenal’s next.
source: 9 (7) Southampton: Man City loss reminds us that Virgil Van Dijk was really important.
source: 8 (11) Watford: Winners of three-in-four and that loss came to Spurs, who look capable of outracing a fighter jet right now.
source: 7 (8) Arsenal: Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez are the main reasons the Gunners aren’t comfortably seventh or worse.
6 (5) Everton: We know the Toffees can dust the lower half of the table, but they really need to beat Chelsea or Arsenal in the run-in to engender any Top Four confidence for next season.
source: 5 (4) Liverpool: Quietly (?) unbeaten in seven.
4 (6) Manchester City: For the first time since their red-hot start, City is starting to consistently show what a Pep Guardiola team can be in the Premier League. Will summer reinforcements allow them to do it for a full year?
source: T-2 (3) Manchester United: Still have not lost in league play since October 23rd.
source: T-2 (1) Chelsea: Yes, they are going to win the league. No, we wouldn’t pick them on a neutral field against Spurs right now. Yes, they’ll probably prove us wrong at Wembley this weekend.
source: 1 (2) Tottenham Hotspur: The best team going right now, just too late to make a difference to the title fight. Probably. Right?

Premier League Power Rankings: Northeast in the nether regions

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The Premier League Power Rankings don’t see much tumult this time of year, with the desperation of the relegation and Top Four chases often mirroring the positioning on the PL table.

With three traditional top teams — Manchester United, Manchester City, and Arsenal — idle thanks to last weekend’s EFL Cup Final, there certainly wasn’t much movement up top.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s PL coverage ]

As for the bottom, well, here is the latest batch of Premier League power rankings…

20 (19) Sunderland: No happy reunion for David Moyes at Goodison.
200px-Middlesbrough_crest 19 (16) Middlesbrough: Boro risks relegation almost exclusively on their failure to finish, as Aitor Karanka‘s side is not poor in defense and simply hasn’t found consistent quality in attack. The Palace loss was baffling.
source: 18 (20) Crystal Palace: Their 1-0 win over Boro feels a bit more like a match they didn’t lose, but the three points are all that matter.
Hull City logo 17 (17) Hull City: Decent performance in draw versus Burnley. Now have the only true six-pointer of the weekend with a visit to resurgent Leicester.
source: 16 (15) Bournemouth: Four-straight losses after loss at the Hawthorns.
source: 15 (13) Swansea City: Not much shame in losing at Chelsea.
Leicester City logo
14 (18) Leicester City: Well that was a coming out party following the firing of Claudio Ranieri, though the pure enthusiasm and effort in defeating Liverpool feels damning on the character of the players.
source: 13 (14) Watford: The Hornets pick up another point en route to safety.
source: 12 (12) Southampton: DNP
source: 11 (11) Stoke City: Absolutely clobbered by Spurs in a brutal performance. Hopefully a reunion of Geoff Cameron and Glenn Whelan can steady the middle of the park.
burnley fc crest 10 (10) Burnley: Showed good fight back in 1-1 draw at Hull.
source: 9 (9) West Ham United: Didn’t take the next step, again, and are proving they’re simply a mid-table team.
source: 8 (7) Liverpool: Jurgen Klopp, right now at least, is answerless.
source: 7 (8) West Bromwich Albion: Tony Pulis and the Baggies continue to overachieve, beating the teams they should more often than not.
source: 6 (5) Arsenal: DNP. Off to Anfield on Saturday in a must-win for both sides’ sanities.
Source: Everton FC
5 (6) Everton: Ronald Koeman‘s guys wouldn’t hate starting the table at zero right now. Very good litmus test coming up Sunday at White Hart Lane.
source: 4 (4) Manchester United: DNP. Hosts Bournemouth in the early match on Saturday.
source: 3 (3) Tottenham Hotspur: Throttled Stoke City in infuriating fashion given the Europa League decision versus Gent.
Logo_Manchester_City 2 (2) Manchester City: DNP. Sunderland’s next.
source: 1 (1) Chelsea: Ten-point lead ahead of a fierce-looking Monday afternoon trip to West Ham for a London Derby.

Premier League Power Rankings: Week 16

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Expect some movement after a couple weeks between our Premier League Power Rankings, although perhaps not as much as usual given three match days.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s PL coverage ]

We have a new bottom team, though it’s not difficult to predict who’s atop the Power Rankings.

[ MORE: PST’s Player Power Rankings for Weeks 15/16 ]

Without further ado, let’s dig in.

Hull City logo 20 (18) Hull City: Last league win was Nov. 6. Players needed at the KC.
burnley fc crest 19 (15) Burnley: Sean Dyche‘s men are losers of four-in-five, now five points off 18th.
source: 18 (20) Sunderland: Moyes’ boys again making monumentally poor starts into survival seasons. Watford next at home.
source: 17 (19) Crystal Palace: Alan Pardew can thank his lucky stars for Wilfried Zaha and Christian Benteke, because defending’s been optional at Selhurst Park.
200px-Middlesbrough_crest 16 (14) Middlesbrough: Hull win turning out to be huge, as Boro just three points clear of the drop.
source: 15 (17) Swansea City: Bob Bradley is two weeks away from getting to the transfer window, where defenders have to be purchased.
source: 14 (13) Leicester City: Beating Man City was great, but it’s sandwiched between losses to Sunderland and Bournemouth.
logo_westham 13 (16) West Ham United: A brutal stretch in the rear view, can the Irons take advantage of Hull-Swans-Leicester?
source: 12 (9) Watford: Just can’t get a read on these guys. It would help if Odion Ighalo started firing again.
source: 11 (7) Stoke City: Desperately in search of more consistent scoring.
source: 10 (10) Southampton: Now done with Europe, will Claude Puel‘s side deliver expected performances in the Premier League?
source: 9 (11) Everton: The Arsenal win could be a turning point for Ronald Koeman, who was facing serious heat at Goodison Park. Could another U.S. goalkeeper be on his way?
source: 8 (12)
Bournemouth: Eddie Howe continues to make his name as the best British manager going, and a derby win over Saints would be another feather in his cap.
source: 7 (8) West Bromwich Albion: Tony Pulis doing his best top-half Papillon, telling folks “I’m still here!”
source: 6 (5) Tottenham Hotspur: Beating up on bad teams, but failing several big tests.
Logo_Manchester_City 5 (3) Manchester City: Rebounded from the Leicester City loss to handle its business versus tricky Watford.
source: 4 (6) Manchester United: Zlatan Ibrahimovic has been ripping off shots all season, and his finishing is currently shutting up skeptics.
source: 3 (2) Liverpool: Capable of anything, but that’s not always good. See: the 0-0 draw vs. Saints and the 4-3 loss to Bournemouth.
source: 2 (4) Arsenal: Tuesday’s loss at Everton its first PL setback since Opening Day.
source: 1 (1) Chelsea: Ten-straight league wins. Did you expect anything less?

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