THERE’S no international break for the MLS. No, not at all! Will Dyer (@w2Dyer) takes a look at this weekend’s best bets.
DC United v Los Angeles Galaxy | Saturday 23:00 | Sky Sports 5
This is the Sky Sports live Saturday night game and it promises to be a competitive match. I think LA have got their work cut out.
The Galaxy travel to the capital for a clash with the Black and Red which is a 2,300 mile flight and they haven’t had the best of starts to this MLS season. A draw at home to Houston Dynamo last weekend was a disappointment considering how the Texans have struggled on the road in recent years.
Perhaps they’re suffering a bit of a comedown after winning the MLS Cup last season for the third time in four years. Landon Donovan’s retirement looms large. Robbie Keane’s not getting any younger, and I think they might be failing to diversify slightly. I can’t see them retaining the title this year.
DCU have won the MLS Cup four times themselves but their last title season was in 2004 and everyone involved with the club believes another one is well overdue.
The last six meetings between these two in Washington D.C. have seen three draws, two wins for DC and one for LA. The Galaxy’s historical record reads much better but that should have little bearing on the present day.
I think United can make home advantage pay at the RFK Memorial Stadium. They’re well supported and rarely lose there; just two home defeats in the 2014 season was one of the main reasons they won the Eastern Conference. They have an experienced side and are tough to break down so I reckon DC are a decent price to win the game, but I’m going to search for even more value.
All of United’s last five home wins have been by exactly one goal and any home victory looks likely to be narrow, so a couple of correct scores appeal to me. Seven of LA’s last nine away defeats in all competitions were also by exactly one goal and all of those were 1-0 or 2-1 to the home side.
Vancouver Whitecaps v Portland Timbers | Sunday 00:00
Vancouver have surprised a few with back-to-back victories, just two of the many upsets that we’ve seen in the first three weeks of this MLS season. Both those wins came on the road whilst they lost they lost their only home game 3-1 to Toronto.
The Whitecaps allowed the Reds 15 shots on their goal in that defeat which is quite a lot in relation to how dominant home sides tend to be in MLS. Both of their victories have been ‘smash and grab’ jobs with Octavio Rivero grabbing late goals in both games. They did outplay Chicago but I can’t see them doing that here.
Portland have drawn all of their 3 games so far. They’ll be frustrated that they haven’t won at least one of those games but they were against Real Salt Lake, Sporting Kansas City and LA Galaxy; three good sides.
The Timbers won 3-0 in both meetings with the Whitecaps last season. Vancouver have failed to score more than one goal in all three of their 2015 games so far and as the Timbers have won three and drawn two of their last five visits to Vancouver I think double chance on the away side is the best option, Vancouver are certainly too short to win this and that gives a bit of juice to the price.
FC Dallas v Seattle Sounders | Sunday 00:30
All aboard the FC Dallas party-bus! The Texans are the only side with their 100% record intact. They’ve scored six goals and conceded just one and that was in a comfortable 3-1 beating of the useful Sporting Kansas City.
Last weekend’s victory over Philadelphia was largely thanks to the home side receiving a first half red card but you can only beat what’s in front of you and Dallas did that very well.
This weekend they’re back at their beloved Toyota Stadium and Seattle must be a little concerned going in to this game as Dallas won 12 of their 17 home games last season, a record only equalled by LA and the Sounders themselves in 2014.
FCD are certainly worth backing to win this weekend and the biggest reason for that is Clint Dempsey’s hamstring injury. The Sounder’s star player is out for 2-3 weeks and he’ll be sorely missed. Most of their attacking play goes through him and he’s also scored three of their five goals this season.
Seattle also suffered a dreadful defeat at the hands of San Jose in their last game two weeks ago. The Earthquakes won 3-2 at CenturyLink Field despite the fact they had 10 men for 40 minutes. SJ even managed to extend their lead to 3-1 whilst a man down before being pegged back to 3-2.
Seattle dominated proceedings but their inability to capitalise was odd and they ended up paying the price. They might have won the Western Conference last year but with performances like that they won’t get close this time and I’m happy to side with the form team.
DC United v LA Galaxy – DC United to win 1-0 (9/1 BetVictor)
DC United v LA Galaxy – DC United to win 2-1 (21/2 BetVictor)
Vancouver Whitecaps v Portland Timbers – Portland Timbers Double Chance (5/6 Bet365)
FC Dallas v Seattle Sounders – FC Dallas to win (13/10 Coral)
Anyone else like betting in the MLS? Let us know what you’re backing in the comments box below.