The BIG FotMob 2024 MLS Preview: Eastern Conference

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With the 2024 season about to get underway, we thought we’d take you through a team-by-team look at how things are shaping up.


By James Nalton


Atlanta United

Who?

A 2017 expansion team that won the MLS Cup just a year later. One of their stars of that successful season, Miguel Almirón, moved to the Premier League, joining Newcastle United.

They’ve struggled to reach those heights since but unlike some of the other contenders in the Eastern Conference have no continental football in 2024 so can focus on the league and could challenge again.

Familiar names?

Brad Guzan, the 39-year-old former Aston Villa and Middlesbrough goalkeeper who has 64 caps for the United States.

Young star

Argentine World Cup winner Thiago Almada, 22, is constantly linked with a move away from the club and is one of the best players in the league. 19-year-old Caleb Wiley is already a regular on the left flank.

New signing

Stian Gregersen should slot into the back four in place of Miles Robinson who left to join FC Cincinnati.

Charlotte FC

Who?

One of the newest teams in the league having joined in 2022.

They are now coached by former Aston Villa and Norwich manager Dean Smith as they look to improve on last season when they made the wildcard round of the playoffs but lost to New York Red Bulls.

Familiar names?

Last year they signed former Burnley midfielder Ashley Westwood, and another former Burnley player, Scott Arfield, is among their ranks.

Young star

22-year-old Frenchman Adilson Malanda is a regular at centre-back, while 20-year-old Nikola Petković will be looking to get games in midfield this season.

New signing

Charlotte acquired towering Frenchman Djibril Diani who will be a big presence in their midfield this season and can also play centre-back if required.

Chicago Fire

Who?

The Fire joined the league in 1998 and enjoyed some early success winning the MLS Cup and Open Cup double in their first year.

They also have a Supporters’ Shield title to their name but have not qualified for the playoffs now for the past five seasons, regularly finishing near the bottom of the table in the East. 

Familiar names?

Xherdan Shaqiri has not quite lived up to expectations since joining from Lyon in 2022, but the former Liverpool and Bayern man could have more support this season and find some form.

Young star

Chris Brady replaced Gabriel Slonina in goal for the Fire after his fellow young American left to join Chelsea. 

In his performances so far, Brady, 19, has hinted he has similar potential to his predecessor.

New signing

The Fire broke their club transfer record by bringing in Hugo Cuypers from Belgian side Gent.

The 27-year-old striker scored 27 goals in 39 games in Belgium in the 2022/23 season, and Chicago fans will be hoping that kind of return is replicated in MLS.

FC Cincinnati

Who?

Defending Supporters’ Shield winners who were the best team in the league last season.

They also boast the league’s current best player and 2023 MVP award winner, Luciano “Lucho” Acosta.

Cincinnati, coached by Pat Noonan, are hoping to build on last season’s success and add an MLS Cup to their name in 2024.

Familiar names?

The diminutive Acosta is the most recognised player, having spent several years in MLS with DC United and now Cincinnati.

Assistant coach Dominic Kinnear is an experienced coach known throughout the country, and won several titles as head coach of Houston Dynamo. 

Young star

20-year-old Guatemalan forward Arquimides Ordóñez will be hoping for more game time with the first team in 2024 having scored nine goals in 11 games for the reserves last year.

New signing

Cincy secured something of a coup when they acquired 26-year-old American defender Miles Robinson on a free transfer.

The former Atlanta centre-back was tipped to move to Europe but makes a big move within the league to add some extra narrative in the East.

Columbus Crew

Who?

A storied team whose very existence was under threat not too long ago, but the club was saved by a collective supporter movement and new ownership in 2018.

The Crew were one of the most exciting attacking teams in the league last season, scoring 67 goals in 34 regular season games.

Their head coach, Wilfried Nancy, has an interesting, bold style of play that transcends the league, and all of this came together at the right moment to help them win the MLS Cup last season. 

Familiar names?

MVP in the 2023 MLS Cup final was Cucho Hernández, who played in the Premier League with Watford. 

Young star

At 22, Aidan Morris is an age group above many of the other young players mentioned but is still improving and impressed last season.

Taha Habroune is the younger player in the squad, but remains to be seen how many minutes the 18-year-old gets. 

New signing

Colombian wide player Marino Hinestroza joins as part of a low-key pre-season transfer window for the Crew, and could operate at left wing-back in Nancy’s 3-4-3.

D.C. United

Who?

D.C. United are one of the most successful clubs in the history of American soccer, not that you’d know it to watch them recently.

Former player Wayne Rooney recently had a go at dragging them off the bottom of the table – where they had finished in 2022 – and back into the playoffs for the first time in four years, but they didn’t quite make it.

In 2023 they were at least no longer the worst team in MLS, so there is something to build on for their new head coach, Troy Lesesne.

Familiar names?

Christian Benteke is one of the club’s designated players and is relied on to get the goals. He scored 14 last season—a decent return and something else for United to build upon.

Young star

22-year-old Theodore Ku-DiPietro emerged as a potential star of the team after being given game time by Rooney, while 21-year-old Gabriel Pirani will also have a regular role to play in attacking midfield areas.

New signing

Finnish midfielder Matti Peltola filled the club’s final designated player spot in the off-season, but at 21 is himself one of the younger players in the team.

Inter Miami CF

Who?

David Beckham’s franchise which entered the league in a cut-price deal thanks to a clause in Beckham’s old MLS contract from his playing days with LA Galaxy.

They have been in the league since 2020 but are yet to make an impact on it. 

That is expected to change with the arrival of Lionel Messi and other high-profile players who begin their first full season in MLS this year.

Familiar names?

Messi is reasonably well known! Then add Luis Suárez, Sergio Busquets, and Jordi Alba, as well as former Newcastle right-back DeAndre Yedlin.

Young star

There could be plenty of game time for 20-year-old midfielders David Ruíz and Diego Gómez after former captain, Gregore, departed just before the start of the season to make sure Miami’s star-studded squad remained within MLS salary cap rules.

Federico Redondo, set to join the club from Argentinos Juniors, is a highly rated 21-year-old midfielder of whom big things are expected.

New signing

Inter Miami’s squad looks unbalanced, favouring the attack, so there will be a lot of pressure on new arrival at centre-back, Nicolás Freire, to shore things up at the other end.

CF Montréal

Who?

The most recent Canadian club to join the league did so back in 2012 under the much more imaginative name, Montreal Impact. The original Impact de Montréal FC go back to 1992, so there is some history beyond MLS.

In the present day, they have experienced mixed results, finishing as high as third in the overall table in 2022 under Wilfried Nancy. After the French coach departed to Columbus they lost a lot of key players and dropped down to 20th last year—10th in the conference—missing out on the playoffs.

They are now hoping for a return to 2022 form under new coach Laurent Courtois who arrived in the opposite direction to Nancy, from Columbus Crew.

Familiar names?

Former Tottenham midfielder Victor Wanyama captains the side.

Young star

A few to choose from, with 22-year-old Ghanaian forward Kwadwo Opoku likely to be the youngest player getting the most minutes, but Nathan-Dylan Saliba just turned 20 and could play semi-regularly in midfield. 

New signing

Their move for former Atlanta United and Inter Miami forward Josef Martínez caught a few people by surprise, and many doubt he can recapture the goalscoring form of his Atlanta days. He’ll be out to prove that wrong, though might have to do so from the bench initially.

Nashville SC

Who?

Brightly coloured rock ‘n’ rollers from the Music City who played their first season in the league in 2020.

Their home stadium, Geodis Park, is also one of the best soccer-specific stadiums in the country. Their current position is that of a defensively solid team, but one that struggles to score. 

They conceded the joint-fewest goals in MLS in 2023 along with Seattle, but were knocked out in the first round of the playoffs.

Familiar names?

German attacking midfielder / forward Hany Mukhtar is one of the league’s standout players, and his partner in attack Sam Surridge made 20 appearances in the Premier League in 2022/23 for Nottingham Forest. They will be looking to combine to add more goals in 2024.

Young star

Nashville are not a team that look ready to give minutes to plenty of young players, but they did sign 22-year-old forward Woobens Pacius from Canadian Premier League side Forge FC in the off-season.

Teenagers Adem Sipić and Isaiah Jones were signed to homegrown deals so could be worth looking out for.

New signing

The likely starter of a handful of new signings is winger Tyler Boyd who joined following a spell with LA Galaxy. 

New England Revolution

Who?

An original member of MLS who won the Supporters’ Shield in 2021 but await an elusive MLS Cup having finished runner-up on five occasions.

Based in Foxboro, Massachusetts, they share a stadium with New England Patriots of the NFL which will be used for the World Cup in 2026.

Former MLS Cup winner with Portland and Columbus, Caleb Porter, is their new head coach for 2024.

Familiar names?

Former Aston Villa player Carles Gil is among the best playmakers in the league and remains a key player for the Revolution.

Young star

Midfielder Noel Buck is one of MLS’s standout young players across all teams. The 18-year-old is eligible for England and the United States, and is wanted by both such is his talent.

New signing

Having lost Matt Turner and Djordje Petrovic to the Premier League in recent years, New England will hope Henrich Ravas becomes the latest in a line of top goalkeepers at the club.

New York City

Who?

The New York team that plays at baseball stadiums, but is set to move into a Queens-based soccer-specific stadium in 2027.

They are part of the Manchester City-led City Football Group, won the MLS Cup in 2021, and are currently coached by former Man City Women’s head coach Nick Cushing.

Having failed to make the playoffs last season, they have assembled an exciting-looking team ahead of 2024.

Familiar names?

New signing Hannes Wolf has played in the Austrian and German Bundesligas while midfielder James Sands had a spell with Rangers. No marquee names these days, though.

Young star

There are several, but perhaps the one with the most potential is 18-year-old Serbian forward Jovan Mijatović who joined ahead of the new season and is highly rated by City Football Group as a whole.

20-year-old SuperDraft pick Malachi Jones has also looked promising in pre-season and the forward could be a surprise part of the team this year.

New signing

Having already mentioned a few, this is an excuse to mention another young star, Agustin Ojeda. The 19-year-old looks like an exciting, direct winger, who could give the goal-shy NYCFC some much-needed go-forward.

New York Red Bulls

Who?

The New York team that plays in New Jersey (which isn’t a bad thing).

Formerly known as the MetroStars, they were taken over by Red Bull in 2006 and won the Supporters’ Shield three times since, in 2013, 2015, and 2018. But like New England Revolution, an MLS Cup continues to evade them.

They have a new coach for 2024 in Sandro Schwarz.

Familiar names?

Lewis Morgan moved to Inter Miami from Celtic in 2020 and emerged as one of the league’s best players in a poor team. 

Having joined the Red Bulls in 2022, he’s hoping for a return from injury and a return to form in 2024.

Young star

Another team with several promising players, but 21-year-old left-back John Tolkin is the most established and could attract interest from Europe if his good form continues in 2024.

Also look out for Serge Ngoma, Dennis Gjengaar, and Daniel Edelman.

New signing

The team used their Red Bull connections to sign Emil Forsberg from RB Leipzig, and he has already been named captain for 2024.

Orlando City

Who?

Joined the league with New York City in 2015 and have been one of the best additions to the conference.

Under head coach Óscar Pareja they finished second in the overall standings last year—their highest ever—and were the only team anywhere near FC Cincinnati by the end of the season.

The question now is, can they keep it up or even build on last season?

Familiar names?

Colombian forward Luis Muriel, who has experience in Serie A and La Liga, arrived as one of the team’s designated players for 2024.

Young star

Defensive midfielder César Araújo is now 22, so is just over the cusp of young star status, but 19-year-old left-sided centre-back Thomas Williams is promising and will hope for some minutes this season as a rotation option with one of the best defenders in the league, Robin Jansson.

New signing

Uruguayan attacking midfielder Nicolás Lodeiro moves to Florida after eight seasons on the west coast with Seattle Sounders, during which he became one of the club’s and the league’s standout players.

He’s 34 now, but could still play a key role in important moments for Orlando.

Philadelphia Union

Who?

One of the most consistent teams in the league in recent years, who are good at getting the most from their academy and shrewd scouting network.

It’s all knitted together by head coach Jim Curtin, who has been in the role since 2014.

They were MLS Cuo finalists in 2022 and won the Supporters’ Shield in 2020.

Familiar names?

Not necessarily for anyone unfamiliar with MLS, but for anyone who does watch the league they will know most of the Union starting lineup given how consistent it is.

Jamaican goalkeeper Andre Blake is one of the best in his position in the region.

Young star

It’s easy to forget that Union midfielder Jack McGlynn is only 20 years old, given how well he’s slotted into the team.

He’s a talented playmaker and set-piece specialist who is already an important part of the starting XI.

New signing

Nothing that made too many headlines, but they have added 19-year-old Danish midfielder Sanders Ngabo to give some depth and potential in the centre of the park.

Toronto FC

Who?

Became the first Canadian team in MLS when they joined the league in 2007.

Won the MLS Cup and Supporters’ Shield in 2017, but finished bottom of the overall standings in 2023 despite some big-name signings.

They have appointed former Canada national team coach John Herdman in an attempt to improve togetherness and see an upturn in fortunes in 2024

Familiar names?

Lorenzo Insigne is the second highest-paid player in the league after Messi but has not yet lived up to expectations. The same could be said of Federico Bernardeschi.

Young star

Canadian youth international Jahkeele Marshall-Rutty has spent time training with Arsenal and Liverpool in the past as part of his development.

The 19-year-old is still yet to have a breakout season, so will be hoping this is it.

New signing

Honduras international Deybi Flores has provided midfield depth. The main job for Toronto lies not in the transfer market, but in turning this existing group of stars and young potential into an effective team unit.


(Images from IMAGO or MLS Club Media)


You can follow every MLS game live with FotMob — featuring deep stats coverage including shot maps, xG, and player ratings. Download the free app here.

The BIG FotMob 2024 MLS Preview: Eastern Conference

With the 2024 season about to get underway, we thought we’d take you through a team-by-team look at how things are shaping up.


By James Nalton


Atlanta United

Who?

A 2017 expansion team that won the MLS Cup just a year later. One of their stars of that successful season, Miguel Almirón, moved to the Premier League, joining Newcastle United.

They’ve struggled to reach those heights since but unlike some of the other contenders in the Eastern Conference have no continental football in 2024 so can focus on the league and could challenge again.

Familiar names?

Brad Guzan, the 39-year-old former Aston Villa and Middlesbrough goalkeeper who has 64 caps for the United States.

Young star

Argentine World Cup winner Thiago Almada, 22, is constantly linked with a move away from the club and is one of the best players in the league. 19-year-old Caleb Wiley is already a regular on the left flank.

New signing

Stian Gregersen should slot into the back four in place of Miles Robinson who left to join FC Cincinnati.

Charlotte FC

Who?

One of the newest teams in the league having joined in 2022.

They are now coached by former Aston Villa and Norwich manager Dean Smith as they look to improve on last season when they made the wildcard round of the playoffs but lost to New York Red Bulls.

Familiar names?

Last year they signed former Burnley midfielder Ashley Westwood, and another former Burnley player, Scott Arfield, is among their ranks.

Young star

22-year-old Frenchman Adilson Malanda is a regular at centre-back, while 20-year-old Nikola Petković will be looking to get games in midfield this season.

New signing

Charlotte acquired towering Frenchman Djibril Diani who will be a big presence in their midfield this season and can also play centre-back if required.

Chicago Fire

Who?

The Fire joined the league in 1998 and enjoyed some early success winning the MLS Cup and Open Cup double in their first year.

They also have a Supporters’ Shield title to their name but have not qualified for the playoffs now for the past five seasons, regularly finishing near the bottom of the table in the East. 

Familiar names?

Xherdan Shaqiri has not quite lived up to expectations since joining from Lyon in 2022, but the former Liverpool and Bayern man could have more support this season and find some form.

Young star

Chris Brady replaced Gabriel Slonina in goal for the Fire after his fellow young American left to join Chelsea. 

In his performances so far, Brady, 19, has hinted he has similar potential to his predecessor.

New signing

The Fire broke their club transfer record by bringing in Hugo Cuypers from Belgian side Gent.

The 27-year-old striker scored 27 goals in 39 games in Belgium in the 2022/23 season, and Chicago fans will be hoping that kind of return is replicated in MLS.

FC Cincinnati

Who?

Defending Supporters’ Shield winners who were the best team in the league last season.

They also boast the league’s current best player and 2023 MVP award winner, Luciano “Lucho” Acosta.

Cincinnati, coached by Pat Noonan, are hoping to build on last season’s success and add an MLS Cup to their name in 2024.

Familiar names?

The diminutive Acosta is the most recognised player, having spent several years in MLS with DC United and now Cincinnati.

Assistant coach Dominic Kinnear is an experienced coach known throughout the country, and won several titles as head coach of Houston Dynamo. 

Young star

20-year-old Guatemalan forward Arquimides Ordóñez will be hoping for more game time with the first team in 2024 having scored nine goals in 11 games for the reserves last year.

New signing

Cincy secured something of a coup when they acquired 26-year-old American defender Miles Robinson on a free transfer.

The former Atlanta centre-back was tipped to move to Europe but makes a big move within the league to add some extra narrative in the East.

Columbus Crew

Who?

A storied team whose very existence was under threat not too long ago, but the club was saved by a collective supporter movement and new ownership in 2018.

The Crew were one of the most exciting attacking teams in the league last season, scoring 67 goals in 34 regular season games.

Their head coach, Wilfried Nancy, has an interesting, bold style of play that transcends the league, and all of this came together at the right moment to help them win the MLS Cup last season. 

Familiar names?

MVP in the 2023 MLS Cup final was Cucho Hernández, who played in the Premier League with Watford. 

Young star

At 22, Aidan Morris is an age group above many of the other young players mentioned but is still improving and impressed last season.

Taha Habroune is the younger player in the squad, but remains to be seen how many minutes the 18-year-old gets. 

New signing

Colombian wide player Marino Hinestroza joins as part of a low-key pre-season transfer window for the Crew, and could operate at left wing-back in Nancy’s 3-4-3.

D.C. United

Who?

D.C. United are one of the most successful clubs in the history of American soccer, not that you’d know it to watch them recently.

Former player Wayne Rooney recently had a go at dragging them off the bottom of the table – where they had finished in 2022 – and back into the playoffs for the first time in four years, but they didn’t quite make it.

In 2023 they were at least no longer the worst team in MLS, so there is something to build on for their new head coach, Troy Lesesne.

Familiar names?

Christian Benteke is one of the club’s designated players and is relied on to get the goals. He scored 14 last season—a decent return and something else for United to build upon.

Young star

22-year-old Theodore Ku-DiPietro emerged as a potential star of the team after being given game time by Rooney, while 21-year-old Gabriel Pirani will also have a regular role to play in attacking midfield areas.

New signing

Finnish midfielder Matti Peltola filled the club’s final designated player spot in the off-season, but at 21 is himself one of the younger players in the team.

Inter Miami CF

Who?

David Beckham’s franchise which entered the league in a cut-price deal thanks to a clause in Beckham’s old MLS contract from his playing days with LA Galaxy.

They have been in the league since 2020 but are yet to make an impact on it. 

That is expected to change with the arrival of Lionel Messi and other high-profile players who begin their first full season in MLS this year.

Familiar names?

Messi is reasonably well known! Then add Luis Suárez, Sergio Busquets, and Jordi Alba, as well as former Newcastle right-back DeAndre Yedlin.

Young star

There could be plenty of game time for 20-year-old midfielders David Ruíz and Diego Gómez after former captain, Gregore, departed just before the start of the season to make sure Miami’s star-studded squad remained within MLS salary cap rules.

Federico Redondo, set to join the club from Argentinos Juniors, is a highly rated 21-year-old midfielder of whom big things are expected.

New signing

Inter Miami’s squad looks unbalanced, favouring the attack, so there will be a lot of pressure on new arrival at centre-back, Nicolás Freire, to shore things up at the other end.

CF Montréal

Who?

The most recent Canadian club to join the league did so back in 2012 under the much more imaginative name, Montreal Impact. The original Impact de Montréal FC go back to 1992, so there is some history beyond MLS.

In the present day, they have experienced mixed results, finishing as high as third in the overall table in 2022 under Wilfried Nancy. After the French coach departed to Columbus they lost a lot of key players and dropped down to 20th last year—10th in the conference—missing out on the playoffs.

They are now hoping for a return to 2022 form under new coach Laurent Courtois who arrived in the opposite direction to Nancy, from Columbus Crew.

Familiar names?

Former Tottenham midfielder Victor Wanyama captains the side.

Young star

A few to choose from, with 22-year-old Ghanaian forward Kwadwo Opoku likely to be the youngest player getting the most minutes, but Nathan-Dylan Saliba just turned 20 and could play semi-regularly in midfield. 

New signing

Their move for former Atlanta United and Inter Miami forward Josef Martínez caught a few people by surprise, and many doubt he can recapture the goalscoring form of his Atlanta days. He’ll be out to prove that wrong, though might have to do so from the bench initially.

Nashville SC

Who?

Brightly coloured rock ‘n’ rollers from the Music City who played their first season in the league in 2020.

Their home stadium, Geodis Park, is also one of the best soccer-specific stadiums in the country. Their current position is that of a defensively solid team, but one that struggles to score. 

They conceded the joint-fewest goals in MLS in 2023 along with Seattle, but were knocked out in the first round of the playoffs.

Familiar names?

German attacking midfielder / forward Hany Mukhtar is one of the league’s standout players, and his partner in attack Sam Surridge made 20 appearances in the Premier League in 2022/23 for Nottingham Forest. They will be looking to combine to add more goals in 2024.

Young star

Nashville are not a team that look ready to give minutes to plenty of young players, but they did sign 22-year-old forward Woobens Pacius from Canadian Premier League side Forge FC in the off-season.

Teenagers Adem Sipić and Isaiah Jones were signed to homegrown deals so could be worth looking out for.

New signing

The likely starter of a handful of new signings is winger Tyler Boyd who joined following a spell with LA Galaxy. 

New England Revolution

Who?

An original member of MLS who won the Supporters’ Shield in 2021 but await an elusive MLS Cup having finished runner-up on five occasions.

Based in Foxboro, Massachusetts, they share a stadium with New England Patriots of the NFL which will be used for the World Cup in 2026.

Former MLS Cup winner with Portland and Columbus, Caleb Porter, is their new head coach for 2024.

Familiar names?

Former Aston Villa player Carles Gil is among the best playmakers in the league and remains a key player for the Revolution.

Young star

Midfielder Noel Buck is one of MLS’s standout young players across all teams. The 18-year-old is eligible for England and the United States, and is wanted by both such is his talent.

New signing

Having lost Matt Turner and Djordje Petrovic to the Premier League in recent years, New England will hope Henrich Ravas becomes the latest in a line of top goalkeepers at the club.

New York City

Who?

The New York team that plays at baseball stadiums, but is set to move into a Queens-based soccer-specific stadium in 2027.

They are part of the Manchester City-led City Football Group, won the MLS Cup in 2021, and are currently coached by former Man City Women’s head coach Nick Cushing.

Having failed to make the playoffs last season, they have assembled an exciting-looking team ahead of 2024.

Familiar names?

New signing Hannes Wolf has played in the Austrian and German Bundesligas while midfielder James Sands had a spell with Rangers. No marquee names these days, though.

Young star

There are several, but perhaps the one with the most potential is 18-year-old Serbian forward Jovan Mijatović who joined ahead of the new season and is highly rated by City Football Group as a whole.

20-year-old SuperDraft pick Malachi Jones has also looked promising in pre-season and the forward could be a surprise part of the team this year.

New signing

Having already mentioned a few, this is an excuse to mention another young star, Agustin Ojeda. The 19-year-old looks like an exciting, direct winger, who could give the goal-shy NYCFC some much-needed go-forward.

New York Red Bulls

Who?

The New York team that plays in New Jersey (which isn’t a bad thing).

Formerly known as the MetroStars, they were taken over by Red Bull in 2006 and won the Supporters’ Shield three times since, in 2013, 2015, and 2018. But like New England Revolution, an MLS Cup continues to evade them.

They have a new coach for 2024 in Sandro Schwarz.

Familiar names?

Lewis Morgan moved to Inter Miami from Celtic in 2020 and emerged as one of the league’s best players in a poor team. 

Having joined the Red Bulls in 2022, he’s hoping for a return from injury and a return to form in 2024.

Young star

Another team with several promising players, but 21-year-old left-back John Tolkin is the most established and could attract interest from Europe if his good form continues in 2024.

Also look out for Serge Ngoma, Dennis Gjengaar, and Daniel Edelman.

New signing

The team used their Red Bull connections to sign Emil Forsberg from RB Leipzig, and he has already been named captain for 2024.

Orlando City

Who?

Joined the league with New York City in 2015 and have been one of the best additions to the conference.

Under head coach Óscar Pareja they finished second in the overall standings last year—their highest ever—and were the only team anywhere near FC Cincinnati by the end of the season.

The question now is, can they keep it up or even build on last season?

Familiar names?

Colombian forward Luis Muriel, who has experience in Serie A and La Liga, arrived as one of the team’s designated players for 2024.

Young star

Defensive midfielder César Araújo is now 22, so is just over the cusp of young star status, but 19-year-old left-sided centre-back Thomas Williams is promising and will hope for some minutes this season as a rotation option with one of the best defenders in the league, Robin Jansson.

New signing

Uruguayan attacking midfielder Nicolás Lodeiro moves to Florida after eight seasons on the west coast with Seattle Sounders, during which he became one of the club’s and the league’s standout players.

He’s 34 now, but could still play a key role in important moments for Orlando.

Philadelphia Union

Who?

One of the most consistent teams in the league in recent years, who are good at getting the most from their academy and shrewd scouting network.

It’s all knitted together by head coach Jim Curtin, who has been in the role since 2014.

They were MLS Cuo finalists in 2022 and won the Supporters’ Shield in 2020.

Familiar names?

Not necessarily for anyone unfamiliar with MLS, but for anyone who does watch the league they will know most of the Union starting lineup given how consistent it is.

Jamaican goalkeeper Andre Blake is one of the best in his position in the region.

Young star

It’s easy to forget that Union midfielder Jack McGlynn is only 20 years old, given how well he’s slotted into the team.

He’s a talented playmaker and set-piece specialist who is already an important part of the starting XI.

New signing

Nothing that made too many headlines, but they have added 19-year-old Danish midfielder Sanders Ngabo to give some depth and potential in the centre of the park.

Toronto FC

Who?

Became the first Canadian team in MLS when they joined the league in 2007.

Won the MLS Cup and Supporters’ Shield in 2017, but finished bottom of the overall standings in 2023 despite some big-name signings.

They have appointed former Canada national team coach John Herdman in an attempt to improve togetherness and see an upturn in fortunes in 2024

Familiar names?

Lorenzo Insigne is the second highest-paid player in the league after Messi but has not yet lived up to expectations. The same could be said of Federico Bernardeschi.

Young star

Canadian youth international Jahkeele Marshall-Rutty has spent time training with Arsenal and Liverpool in the past as part of his development.

The 19-year-old is still yet to have a breakout season, so will be hoping this is it.

New signing

Honduras international Deybi Flores has provided midfield depth. The main job for Toronto lies not in the transfer market, but in turning this existing group of stars and young potential into an effective team unit.


(Images from IMAGO or MLS Club Media)


You can follow every MLS game live with FotMob — featuring deep stats coverage including shot maps, xG, and player ratings. Download the free app here.