With MLS going to two-legged series in the first playoff round this season, there's been a lot of discussion about the home-field advantage (or lack thereof) in two-legged series. Now some might say that it's an advantage to play the second leg at home, but I don't think that there's any evidence to back that assertion. In the 2002-2003 editions of the UEFA Cup and the UEFA Champions League, 182 two-legged series were played in the qualifying rounds of the Champions League, and the entirety of the UEFA Cup up to the semifinals (the final is a single match at a neutral site). The results? 93 series (51.1%) went to the team that hosted the first leg 89 series (48.9%) went to the team that hosted the second leg "Well," some might say, "a lot of those two-legged series were pretty bad mismatches. If a team win 12-0 on aggregate, it doesn't really tell which leg is better to host." However, if you narrow the selection down to the really close series, the series which finished 180 minutes with the two teams within a goal or loss of one another -- that is, one team won by a single goal, or the series was decided on away goals, in extra time, or in penalties -- then you get 69 series: 33 series (47.8%) went to the team that hosted the first leg 36 series (52.2%) went to the team that hosted the second leg An almost statistically insignificant advantage. Furthermore, if you look at the 12 series that were decided in the non-golden-goal extra time or penalties (which are held immediately after the second leg), nine were won by the home team, the team hosting the second leg. Take those out, and you get 57 series that were decided in 180 minutes and by a goal or less: 30 series (52.6%) went to the team that hosted the first leg 27 series (47.4%) went to the team that hosted the second leg An equally insignificant advantage for the team hosting the first leg. About the only times when a two-legged series favors the team hosting the second leg are when the series is close (either tied or a goal difference either way) after the first leg. 60 of those 99 series went to the team hosting the second leg. But of course, they would. After all, those series are in a dead heat after the first leg, and are thus decided on the second leg, where of course, the team hosting the second leg has the advantage. So really, there's no real advantage to hosting either leg in a two-legged series. None, whatsoever. About the only advantage that the higher seed gets in MLS' two-legged series is that they would host the 30-minute golden-goal extra time and penalties, if needed. But even that's a very questionable advantage.