The USASA Los Angeles Top 10: May 15 ed.
This ranking comes after first round Open Cup results are in, and just before the second round kicks off.
There is additional tweaking to my ranking, with the aim of being as fair and as precise as possible. But no matter how I or anyone else attempts to rank these teams, there is no clearer indicator for ranking clubs other than direct competition. That’s why for this ranking, and from now on, where there is no direct competition in the form of inter league play, overall league (or conference where necessary) competitiveness will be weighed.
This additional metric comes after reading feedback on another ranking, where a club suggested that X league is more competitive than Y league.
This ranking will, emphasis on will, reflect ongoing club and league performance in the Open and State Cups. For example, UPSL clubs are ranked higher because they are alive in the Cal South State Cup and Open Cup, and this is a reflection of the UPSL Western Conference, while the NPSL Southwest clubs are out of the Open Cup. The NPSL’s sole Southwest Conference representative in this Open Cup was Albion Pros of San Diego, and they were eliminated by Chula Vista FC, that isn’t competing in their usual So Cal Premier League play so far this year. Thus, no NPSL club represented the LA area at all in this Open Cup. Neither are there any So Cal Premier clubs remaining in the State or Open Cups.
Here are additional metrics to be included with my initial ranking, from May 3. My aim now is to solidify, codify and standardize this ranking system.
Criteria / Definition
Region: Greater Los Angeles (Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernadino, Ventura Counties)
1. Open Cup
2. USASA Region IV Cup
3. Regional Cup (South)
Inter League Results: Tournaments, exhibitions (A loss in an exhibition match is indicative of Squad Depth).
League or Conference Strength: Gauged by the nature of its highest performing clubs, individually + combined league performance outside of league play.
Squad Depth: Gauged by a club competing in more than one tournament.
League Membership / Continuity: What is the club’s standing with its league? Is it active and in good standing? Is it on hiatus?
Cumulative League Activity: The span of league activity will be weighted, but CLA directly relates to League or Conference Strength.
Current Form: Last 5 games
The LA Top 10
1. Moreno Valley FC (UPSL) retains the top spot after earning a victory in the Open Cup over Ventura County Fusion of the PDL. MVFC has yet to make up their State Cup semifinal match with LA Wolves, the tournament in which FC Long Beach is a finalist and awaits either one of these UPSL semifinalists.
2. LA Wolves (UPSL) hold on to the second spot by winning convincingly in their first round Open Cup match, 4–2 over San Diego Zest of the PDL. The Wolves await their chance to knock Moreno Valley out of the number 1 spot, and will have to wait until their State Cup semifinal is rescheduled.
3. FC Golden State (PDL) appear in the 3rd spot after debuting in the Open Cup with a win over Outbreak SC, who at the time of this writing is the highest-performing club in the So Cal Premier League. Golden State’s appearance at this spot demonstrates the weight / value assigned to the Open Cup in my ranking.
4. FC Long Beach (CAL) club that isn’t a member of any of these leagues, but is a member of Cal South through their youth system, is a finalist in the Cal South State Cup. They’ve earned a shot at the USASA Region IV tournament along with the winner of the LA Wolves — Moreno Valley semifinal match. The winner of the Region IV tournament competes for the National Cup with the champions of the other three USASA regions.
5. Strikers South Coast (UPSL) are out of the Regional and Open Cups but will seemingly run away with the top spot in the UPSL Western Conference if they continue on their tear. Strikers last made a statement with a 4–3 comeback win over Santa Ana Winds FC in UPSL play.
6. La Máquina (UPSL) are also out of the State and Open Cups. La Maquina crashed out of this Open Cup after the first round, after a 4–1 blowout loss to Fresno Fuego. While they haven’t measured up in the State or Open Cups, they’ve picked up steam in the UPSL.
7. Santa Ana Winds FC (UPSL) have dipped in form, dropping 4 out of 6 points in their last two games, versus Anaheim and Strikers, after their elimination from the State Cup by defending USASA Region IV Champion, Moreno Valley FC. Santa Ana sits sixth in the UPSL after 10 games, with one game in hand. PSC FC has shot up to fifth in the UPSL, one point above Winds FC, but additional points were earned by SNA (for purposes of this ranking) for an Open Cup qualifying win, and two wins in the State Cup, while PSC didn’t compete in these cups.
8. Outbreak SC (SCP) is the top club in the So Cal Premier League after 16 games, good enough to retain their current top spot no matter what Real Sociedad Royals do with 15 games played. Outbreak earned 4 points in the State Cup, the same as Royals, but Outbreak qualified to the Open Cup by defeating San Fernando Valley Scorpions of the UPSL, and fellow So Cal Premier club Buena Park FC, in contrast to Royals who didn’t make the Open Cup.
9. Real Sociedad Royals (SCP) are second in the So Cal Premier League and are a traditional fixture in the USASA LA landscape, having competed in Open Cup qualifying over the years, and earned 4 points in the State Cup this year, only having missed the quarterfinal stage by very little.
10. Riverside Coras (NPSL) continue to dominate the NPSL Southwest Conference, successfully fending off attempts to take their top spot, particularly against Orange County FC and FC Arizona.
Orange County FC (NPSL), PSC FC (UPSL), Bell Gardens FC (UPSL), Panamerican FC (UPSL).