Columbus Crew vs New York City FC
For a 3rd treble in a row, I’m backing the Crew to get a result. They drew away at Inter Miami in midweek, which may be a disappointment given they lead twice and conceded late on.
They’re now within 3 points of 2nd and they’ll expect to keep up that momentum, given their incredible home record so far.
Columbus have been beaten just once on home soil, winning 8/11 matches. They’ve scored an incredible 29 goals at Lower.com field, the most in the Eastern Conference.
They’ve won 5 on the spin at home, and now face an NYCFC team who will pose problems, but The Crew should have that cutting edge to turn this in to another 3 points.
NYC’s issue is converting their draws in to wins. Depending on whether or not you’re a glass half full or glass half empty kind of person, depends how you interpret their form.
They haven’t been beaten in 7 MLS match, impressive, right? Not for me. They’ve won just 1 match in that run, a 1-0 victory at Montreal.
The reality is even worse, this side have won just 1 of their last 13 outings in the league. On the road, they’ve scored just 9 goals in 12 matches, and accumulated just 12 points. Managing that one solitary win.
It’s no surprise with those stats, that their underlying metrics follow suit. This season, NYC have averaged an xG of just 0.84 on the road.
Columbus, by comparison, average 1.84 xG at home and have converted that in to 2.64 goals per game. Thanks to the talent of Lucas Zelarayan and Cucho Hernandez.
The 1.75 on offer for Columbus to win, is too good for me to turn down.
DC United vs Inter Miami
DC head in to match day 14 at the shortest odds of any MLS side to win. Wayne Rooney’s side are set to host the MLS Cup in a couple of weeks time in this very arena.
They’ve had some tough fixtures lately. Trips to Nashville & Dallas, as well as a home game against runaway leaders Cincinnati, yet they’ve still emerged with 6 points, the win at Dallas at the weekend was a seriously impressive result.
They have a fantastic opportunity to go back to back now, as they host an Inter Miami side who can’t buy a win. Messi’s new side came from behind twice to draw 2-2 with Columbus at the weekend, but they still remain winless in 9 MLS games, with 7 of those being defeats.
Their away record is nothing short of abysmal, with 1 win and 8 defeats on their travels.
Messi, Busquets and possible other reinforcements won’t arrive until after the break that follows the All-Stars game and until then, this side look devoid of ideas and confidence, it almost feels like they’re just waiting for the cavalry to arrive.
Their underlying metrics are very poor, they average an xG of just 1.18. DC by comparison, average a 1.48 xG and restrict their opponents to 1.08, which is very impressive and should give them more than enough to get maximum points here.
DC have now lost just 1 of their last 6 home matches, and Inter Miami are the side you’d pick to play right now to improve on that run.
Toronto FC vs St Louis City
Had you priced this game at the beginning of the season, with nothing to go off except feeling and the two squad lists at hand, I’d imagine Toronto would’ve been odds on favourites.
however, here we are, with newcomers St Louis travelling to Canada as favourites, after a storming start to their MLS legacy. A comfortable 2-0 home win over The Rapids at the weekend landed us a treble, as they maintained their spot at the top of the Western Conference.
Their expansive, high energy style has really shone and made them a nightmare for MLS defences. Even with the loss of Joao Klauss after just 7 games, St Louis have rallied and continued to impress.
Away results are hard to come by in the MLS, but St Louis have gave a good account of themselves on the road, with only RSL taking more away points so far this season.
Despite forking out huge wages on the likes of Lorenzo Insigne and Fernando Bernadeschi, Toronto have woefully underperformed and they were absolutely obliterated by Orlando in midweek as they fell to a 4-0 defeat and mustered just 0.13 xG, as the Canadians failed to have a single shot on target.
Toronto are now 7 without a win, and have lost their last 4, scoring just 1 goal across those matches. St Louis’s last away match saw them turn over San Jose, who were unbeaten at home before they arrived, so confidence will be high here and they can tighten their grip on top spot, especially with The Sounders facing a tough trip to a rejuvenated Whitecaps side.