Can You Bet on MLS in New Jersey?


From humble beginnings in 2013 to a booming industry generating billions in revenue, New Jersey’s online gambling sector has been nothing short of a remarkable success story. With the Garden State poised to extend its iGaming law for another decade, the stage is set for further growth and innovation, as well as collaboration with other states that have legalized online gambling. Yet, as the industry prospers, so too must the focus on responsible gambling, player protection, and community support intensify. As more states across the U.S. look to legalize online gambling, New Jersey’s journey offers invaluable insights and a shining example of how to strike the delicate balance between embracing the digital revolution and addressing the social challenges that inevitably come with it.

A Brief History of Online Gambling in New Jersey

The inception of online gambling in New Jersey dates back to November 2013. Since then, state casinos have generated an impressive $4.9 billion in revenue from online gaming activities. Over the years, tax revenue from online casino gaming has averaged $200 million annually, becoming a crucial source of income for the state’s three racetracks and nine remaining Atlantic City casinos.

In comparison to mobile legal sports betting, tax revenue from iGaming in New Jersey has been significantly higher. For the first 11 months of 2022, New Jersey sports betting collected $82.7 million in tax revenue from online sports betting sites. However, online sports betting has always garnered more public attention when it comes to the gaming industry as a whole.

Can you bet on MLS in New Jersey?

Major League Soccer has seen tremendous growth in recent years, both in terms of popularity and competitiveness. As the highest level of professional soccer in the United States and Canada, MLS is attracting more fans, investors, and top talent from around the globe. Naturally, as the interest in the sport grows, so does the desire to place bets on MLS matches.

New Jersey, being a pioneer in the sports betting industry, recognizes the demand for wagering on various sports, including soccer. But can you bet on MLS matches in the Garden State? The answer is a resounding yes!

In June 2018, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy signed a bill legalizing sports betting, following the landmark decision by the United States Supreme Court that struck down the federal ban on sports wagering. Since then, sports enthusiasts in New Jersey have been able to place legal bets on a wide range of sporting events, including MLS matches.

New Jersey residents and visitors can place bets on MLS games through various channels, such as online sportsbooks, mobile betting apps, and brick-and-mortar sportsbooks located at casinos and racetracks. With the convenience of online and mobile platforms, bettors can enjoy the excitement of placing wagers on their favorite MLS teams without having to visit a physical betting location.

Not only can you bet on individual matches, but you can also wager on various aspects of the games, such as the total number of goals scored, the outcome of the first half, or even which player will score the first goal. Additionally, New Jersey sportsbooks offer futures betting, allowing fans to predict which team will win the MLS Cup or the Supporters’ Shield, among other season-long achievements.

As the sport of soccer continues to gain traction in the United States, sportsbooks in New Jersey are constantly expanding their offerings to cater to the growing interest in MLS betting. Special promotions, enhanced odds, and a wide range of betting options are just some of the perks that bettors can expect to find when wagering on MLS matches in the Garden State.

It’s also important to note that responsible gambling practices are essential when betting on MLS or any other sporting event. New Jersey has strict regulations in place to protect bettors and ensure that they can enjoy the excitement of sports betting in a safe and responsible manner.

In conclusion, betting on MLS matches in New Jersey is not only legal but also widely accessible and enjoyable. As the league continues to grow and attract more fans, the state’s sports betting industry will likely continue to expand its offerings to cater to the increasing demand for MLS wagering. Soccer fans in the Garden State can rest assured that they can cheer for their favorite teams and players while also having the opportunity to place bets and potentially win big.

MLS Betting Rules in New Jersey

  1. Age requirement: Bettors must be at least 21 years old to legally place bets on MLS games in New Jersey.
  2. Location: Only individuals located within the state borders of New Jersey can place bets on MLS games through licensed online sportsbooks, mobile betting apps, or brick-and-mortar sportsbooks at casinos and racetracks. Geolocation technology is used to ensure bettors are within state lines when placing bets.
  3. Types of bets: Bettors can place various types of wagers on MLS games, such as moneyline bets, point spreads, totals (over/under), prop bets, parlays, and futures betting. These options may vary between different sportsbooks, and bettors are encouraged to explore different platforms to find the most suitable betting options for their needs.
  4. Responsible gambling: New Jersey enforces strict regulations to promote responsible gambling and protect bettors. This includes self-exclusion programs, deposit limits, and other tools to help bettors maintain control of their gambling activities.
  5. Betting limits: Each sportsbook sets its betting limits, which dictate the minimum and maximum amounts that can be wagered on a single bet or a series of bets. Bettors should familiarize themselves with the limits imposed by the sportsbook they choose.
  6. Odds and payouts: The odds and potential payouts for each bet will vary among sportsbooks. Bettors should compare odds and payouts across different platforms to find the best value for their bets.
  7. Taxes on winnings: Bettors are responsible for reporting their gambling winnings and paying the appropriate taxes. In general, gambling winnings are subject to federal income tax, and New Jersey also imposes state taxes on winnings over a certain threshold.

Please note that the specific rules and regulations for betting on MLS games in New Jersey may change over time, and it’s essential to stay updated on the latest information. So make sure you visit MLS Football from time to time to stay up to date on the latest news regarding MLS. And to ensure compliance with all legal requirements, bettors should consult the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement’s website or consult with the sportsbook they intend to use.

If you want to learn more about the New Jersey gambling scene, read on.

The Impact of iGaming on Atlantic City Casinos

During the 2020-21 pandemic years, which saw a sharp decline in in-person casino gaming, online gaming became a lifeline for the nine Atlantic City casinos. Today, approximately 33% of gross gaming revenue (GGR) comes from iGaming play. This has helped the retail outlets survive the downturn caused by the pandemic.

As Republican state Senator Vincent Polistina put it, “There’s really no scenario where internet gaming can ever go away. Without having internet gaming, sports betting, these other amenities, Atlantic City would certainly suffer.”

Extending the Online Betting Law Until 2033

In September 2022, the New Jersey Senate and State Assembly held committee hearings on a proposed 10-year extension of the state’s online gaming law. The bill, known as SENATE No. 3075, advanced unanimously to the next step in the legislative process. The extension of the iGaming law will undergo several additional rounds of minor tweaks and possible amendments before gaining final passage from state lawmakers. Once approved, the bill will be sent to Governor Phil Murphy for his signature.

The extension of the mobile wagering law must be passed before November 2023 to ensure that casinos can continue to offer iGaming gambling uninterrupted in New Jersey through 2033.

Political Expediency and the Race Against Time

The likelihood of New Jersey passing a new 10-year extension to the iGaming law is high, considering that 2023 is an election year in the Garden State. With all 120 seats in the state legislature up for grabs in November, the political calendar will likely bring added urgency to the swift passage of the extension before the summer months.

As Bill Pascrell III, a lobbyist and strategic advisor to the gaming industry with the Princeton Public Affairs Group, points out, “There are lots of distractions this year.” He observes that state lawmakers can be expected to spend the months of September and October campaigning for re-election, while the legislature often sits in recess during July and August. Consequently, state lawmakers will be under pressure to pass all critical bills, including the iGaming law.

Record-Breaking iGaming Revenue in 2022

In November 2022, iGaming revenue rose by 23.9% year-over-year to $146.2 million, compared to $118 million in the same month in 2021. This was just shy of the all-time monthly revenue record of $147.2 million set in October. For the first 11 months of 2022, iGaming revenue reached $1.51 billion, a 22.5% YoY gain over the $1.23 billion generated for the same period in 2021.

Once the final figures for the year are released and December results are posted, New Jersey is expected to set new records in both iGaming and online sports betting. This makes it highly unlikely that many legislators will oppose the renewal of a law that has not only preserved thousands of jobs at Atlantic City casinos but also generated significant tax revenues that continue to grow.

The Debate on Permanency and the Lone Voice of Dissent

During the September committee hearings, one legislator wondered why the new law should not be made permanent, eliminating the need for future 10-year renewals. However, not everyone is in favor of the blanket approval of the extension.

Felicia Grondin, Executive Director of the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey, has raised concerns about the lack of adequate staffing and funding for the treatment of problem gaming in the face of the exponential growth of online casinos and sports betting in New Jersey.

“People are in need of help,” Grondin said at a meeting of the Senate State Government, Wagering, Tourism and Historic Preservation Committee in early November. “It’s usually detected when it’s too late when people have lost their kid’s college fund (and) when they’ve lost their homes.”

Grondin has also complained about the aggressive advertising employed by the online gaming industry, making it difficult for those offering help to compete.

The Road Ahead for New Jersey’s iGaming Industry

As the New Jersey Legislature works on extending the online betting law until 2033, the future of the state’s iGaming industry looks bright. The success of online gambling in the state has not only helped Atlantic City casinos weather the storm of the pandemic but also provided much-needed tax revenues to support various state initiatives.

Nonetheless, the debate on how to address the social costs associated with gambling addiction must not be overlooked. As the state moves forward with the extension, it’s essential to strike a balance between the economic benefits of iGaming and the need to support those who are vulnerable to problem gambling.

Expansion and Collaboration with Other States

As the iGaming industry grows in New Jersey, the potential for collaboration and expansion with other states that have legalized online gambling increases. Interstate compacts, such as those established for online poker, allow players from multiple states to compete against each other, increasing prize pools and fostering a more competitive environment. Expanding on these agreements could lead to more significant growth and revenue generation for all participating states.

Technological Advances and Their Impact on iGaming

The rapid development of technology has played a significant role in the success of iGaming in New Jersey. As the industry continues to evolve, new technologies, such as virtual reality, augmented reality, and artificial intelligence, will likely shape the future of online gambling. These innovations can enhance the user experience, attract new players, and increase the potential for further revenue growth.

Responsible Gambling and Player Protection

With the growth of the iGaming industry comes an increased responsibility to promote responsible gambling and protect players. New Jersey has implemented various measures, such as self-exclusion programs and deposit limits, to ensure player safety. As the industry moves forward, continued focus on responsible gambling practices and the development of new tools to support player protection will be crucial in maintaining a sustainable and ethical iGaming environment.

Economic Impact and Community Support

The iGaming industry’s success has had a significant economic impact on New Jersey, providing jobs, tax revenue, and support for local communities. As the industry continues to grow, it will be essential for the state to ensure that the benefits of iGaming are shared with communities that need support. Investing in education, healthcare, and infrastructure can create a lasting positive impact on the state and its residents.

Lessons Learned and the Future of iGaming in the United States

New Jersey’s journey with iGaming has provided valuable lessons for other states considering legalizing online gambling. The success of the industry in the Garden State demonstrates that proper regulation, coupled with technological innovation, can lead to a thriving iGaming market that benefits both the state and its residents. As more states look to legalize online gambling, New Jersey’s experience can serve as a model for the future of iGaming in the United States.


The story of online gambling in New Jersey is a tale of innovation, resilience, and adaptation. Over the past decade, the state has embraced the digital revolution and reaped the rewards of a thriving iGaming industry. As the Garden State looks to extend the online betting law for another decade, the hope is that the ongoing success of iGaming will continue to support the economy while also addressing the social challenges that come with it.