THERE’S just no stopping Will Dyer (@w2Dyer) with hoards of Major League Soccer winners being churned out in recent weeks. He’s back with more best bets to cover the weekend action here.
New York Red Bulls v Chicago Fire | Saturday 00.00 | Sky Sports 1
This was a cracking game last season which Chicago actually won 5-4. That seems ludicrous now as the Fire haven’t won away from home in over a year. Harry Shipp and Bradley Wright-Phillips both scored hat-Tricks when they squared-off last May and I fancy the latter to be on target again on Friday night.
Fire were leading 3-2 at the Stade Saputo last weekend but for a fabulous Didier Drogba treble. The Ivorian grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck and rolled back the years. Most sides would have struggled to keep a lid on him but the fact remains that Fire collapsed under pressure again and as a result I still have zero faith in their ability to close out a road game.
NYRB have won five on the bounce at the Red Bull Arena, that form has pushed them to second in the Eastern Conference. They are in great shape with the arrival of Shaun Wright-Phillips and the form of Lloyd Sam and look set to go deep in the Play-Offs.
Fire have conceded eight in their last three away games and nine in their last two two trips to NYRB’s New Jersey base. Their defence is lacking in confidence so I expect the poacher in Bradley Wright-Phillips to come out on top.
BWP has six goals in his last four home games, scoring in each of them, and with Red Bulls as short as 4/7 to win, I think the even-money available with Skybet on last season’s runaway MLS Top Scorer finding the back of the net is a great bet.
Houston Dynamo v Real Salt Lake | Sunday 01.30
Well, a monkey could probably pick this bet out. Real have now lost eight MLS away games in a row and with Chris Schuler now ruled out for 4-6 months with a broken foot, their struggles look likely to continue. With Schuler, their record this season is W3-D1-L2 and he has been a key defender for them over the last six years.
Houston are in good shape at home. They’re unbeaten in their last six at BBVA Compass Stadium, winning five of them. Owen Coyle has probably got his head around this division now and this fixture is a must-win if Houston still harbour any ambitions of a post-season.
Salt Lake have actually won all of the last three head-to-heads but two of those were in Utah and the other came when an early Dynamo red card gave way to a Javier Morales hat trick and a 5-2 win for RSL.
Morales is still key to Real this year and with Alvaro Saborio, a scorer in this fixture last season, now at DC United he has even more weight on his shoulders. Perhaps that pressure is getting to him; he missed a penalty and was yellow-carded last time out – which coincidentally was at Dynamo’s Texan rivals FC Dallas.
With Houston’s home form and Salt Lake’s away form I’m quite surprised to see Dynamo available at 5/6 (Betvictor). I was expecting closer to 4/7, lap it up.
LA Galaxy v Montreal Impact | Sunday 03.30
Montreal fans already had ‘Didier Drogba Legend’ flags out last weekend and he repaid them with a debut hat-trick. MLS is incredibly competitive and certainly no stroll in the park but there is something about the ability of ageing stars to tear their opponents to pieces.
With Drogba around and Ignacio Piatti looking lively in the second-half for Montreal last weekend, I think the visitors will score but LA have been rampant at home lately. Twenty-seven goals in their last six at StubHub is a ridiculous return and they’ll probably win again this weekend, however, I won’t be getting involved at 4/9.
Whilst the Galaxy have been great going forward they still aren’t the finished article at the back – just two clean sheets in their last seven home MLS games and Montreal have scored in seven away MLS fixtures in a row now.
All seven of those games saw both teams score and four of them ended with the home side taking all three points. Therefore, LA to win and Both Teams To Score looks quite likely at 17/10 with William Hill.
Five of LA’s 11 home wins this season would have banked in the ‘Match Result and Both Teams To Score’ market, including each of their last three home MLS games. Regular readers will know I’d rather not back markets like this when 2-1 and 3-1 correct scores offer far greater returns over time but just two of those five winners were 2-1 or 3-1 and with the way LA are playing this game could easily be 4-1 or 5-3 so I’m happy to keep the selection simple this time.
San Jose Earthquakes v Seattle Sounders | Sunday 03.30
And just like that Seattle are back. The first game that both Clint Dempsey and Obafemi Martins have played together since late June and they go and win 2-0 with both finding the back of the net. It was always going to happen, wasn’t it?
Seattle’s away form in the last couple months is worth writing off completely now that those two are back. This is the third meeting between these sides this year and both previous were won by San Jose in Washington State, so on that basis you would expect San Jose to make it three out of three back at home. I think they might do that but I’m not confident of it.
I can see goals here. The meeting in March saw Chris Wondolowski, Martins and Dempsey all score and I think that’s quite likely again here. It should be an open game with three prolific forwards on the pitch, so I think it’s worth having a go at another Skybet special.
‘Wondo’ has three goals in his last three games against the Sounders and an incredible 102 goals in 183 games for San Jose since re-joining them in 2009. He finds space and anticipates chances so well around the goalmouth. Oba has 11 in 15 for Seattle this season. Those are two strike rates I can’t get away from and they make Skybet’s 15/2 on both scoring look huge.
New York Red Bulls v Chicago Fire – Bradley Wright-Phillips to score anytime (1/1 Skybet)
Houston Dynamo v Real Salt Lake – Houston Dynamo to win (5/6 Betvictor)
LA Galaxy v Montreal Impact – LA Galaxy to win and Both Teams To Score (17/10 William Hill)
San Jose Earthquakes v Seattle Sounders – Obafemi Martins and Chris Wondolowski both to score (15/2 Skybet)
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