Phoenix Rising FC claimed its second Western Conference Title in the USL Championship in the 2020 postseason, and enters the 2021 campaign as favorite to win it all according to fivethirtyeight.com. | Photo courtesy Grace Stufkosky / Phoenix Rising FC
Two-time USL Championship Western Conference Title-winner Phoenix Rising FC will enter the 2021 season as the favorites to claim victory in the USL Championship Final, according to analytics website fivethirtyeight.com, but the chasing pack of fellow contenders appears to be growing as the new season arrives on Saturday.
Rising FC is rated an 18 percent chance to claim its first league title in club history in November ahead of its season opener against San Diego Loyal SC on Friday, April 30 (10 p.m. ET | ESPN2). That’s slightly down from its preseason odds a year ago, when Rising FC entered the season with 21 percent odds.
Leading the chasing contenders are defending Eastern Conference Title holder the Tampa Bay Rowdies, who come in at 10 percent. They’re followed by San Antonio FC at nine percent, Louisville City FC at eight percent, Orange County SC at seven percent, and both Indy Eleven and Sacramento Republic FC at six percent.
Tampa Bay (43% to win Atlantic), Louisville (36% to win Central), San Antonio (46% to win Mountain) and Phoenix (52% to win Pacific) sit in the top positions for their respective divisions, with Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, Indy Eleven, El Paso Locomotive FC and Orange County SC the favorites to claim second place in each division.
For a complete look at the fivethirtyeight.com preseason rankings, visit the Championship’s Club Soccer Prediction’s page.
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