Wagering on the Cards market in the MLS

Updated: 303 Football

We dig deeper into the MLS and look at which teams you can count on when it comes to receiving yellow cards in their matches, are there circumstances when more are produced than others?

Wagering on the Cards market in the MLS
Andy Powell Content Editor

Horse Racing stats man, Andy has contributed to OLBG for 18 years - An Ipswich fan and F1 fanatic, he also contributes EFL football and Motor Sport opinion.

MLS Card Betting Strategies

Below we are going to look at the MLS and more specifically the yellow card statistics, which teams are involved in matches that receive the most? Are there circumstances where more are given out and others?

A yellow card on average over the past five seasons has been given out every 23 minutes, on average a player from the home team gets booked every 50 minutes whilst a player from the visiting team every 44 minutes.

Each soccer sportsbook may offer different card markets so be sure to check with them, the majority will offer the number of cards in a match, some will offer card points, and plenty will offer the number of home or away cards too.

Many of the expert soccer handicappers will use statistics as we list below when they are looking to find a wager, history can help you narrow down which teams to look at when placing a wager on the card markets.

Most Carded MLS Teams

Over the past five seasons, the team who has been involved in games with the most average yellow cards is New York City FC from a total of 156 matches in which they have been involved, those games have seen a total of 688 yellow cards, that is on average 4.41 yellow cards per match with the hosts picking up 335 of those (49%) and the visitors picking up 353 (51%).

Here are the teams whose matches on average have received the most cards over the past five seasons:

New York City FC1566884.413352.153532.26
Houston Dynamo1566654.262901.863752.40
San Jose Earthquakes1566644.263152.023492.24
Portland Timbers1566544.193252.083292.11
Inter Miami1225114.192442.002672.19

Least Carded MLS Teams

Topping the charts for 'cleanest' matches with their average of just 3.45 yellow cards in matches they have been involved in over the last five seasons are Toronto FC who have seen a total of 538 yellow cards produced in their 156 games. The hosting team has picked up 51% of those cards (272) with the visiting team picking up the remaining 49% (266).

Here are the teams whose matches on average have received the least number of cards over the past five seasons:

Toronto FC1565383.452721.742661.71
Seattle Sounders1555443.512511.622931.89
Minnesota United FC1545543.602551.662991.94
Austin FC1023713.641741.711971.93
New England Revolution1565733.672731.753001.92

Top Card Producing Matchups

Here we have the top card-producing matchups over the past five seasons where the matchup has happened five or more times. These ten matchups have all produced on average five yellow cards or more per match

Some which are not surprising are when the New England Revolution visits New York City FC which has averaged 5.33 yellows per game which is no surprise given the New York vs. New England rivalry which goes back a long way in history before it even got into sports, it also appears in the NFL with the Jets and Patriots rivalry and the Yankees and Red Sox rivalry in the MLB.

Sporting Kansas City @ Los Angeles FC5336.60173.40163.20
Los Angeles FC @ Los Angeles Galaxy7456.43284.00172.43
New York City FC @ Columbus Crew6386.33203.33183.00
San Jose Earthquakes @ Portland Timbers6366.00193.17172.83
Chicago Fire @ Philadelphia Union5306.00173.40132.60
FC Cincinnati @ New York City FC6355.83203.33152.50
Real Salt Lake @ Los Angeles FC5295.80142.80153.00
Orlando City @ Inter Miami5285.60163.20122.40
New York Red Bulls @ Atlanta United FC5285.60112.20173.40
Colorado Rapids @ Portland Timbers5285.60163.20122.40

Addition Notes - Red Cards

Red cards are not as common as yellow cards as you would expect, While there have been on average 3.87 yellow cards per match over the past five seasons, we only saw a red card on average every five matches.

The visiting has picked up more reds than the host, with 163 visiting players seeing red and on average one every 10 games whilst 122 home players have seen red which works out as one every 13 games.

Most ill-disciplined Teams

  • 20 Reds - Chicago Fire
  • 19 Reds - Atlanta United Fc
  • 18 Reds - Montreal Impact
  • 17 Reds - Sporting Kansas City
  • 17 Reds - Seattle Sounders

*Statistics only include regular season games, the home team is the official team listed as hosting, and figures for seasons from 2019 to 2023 are taken from football-data.co.uk.

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