Orlando City v DC United
There are a lot of matches which sees two Eastern Conference sides meeting and one of those comes in the early hours of Tuesday morning as Orlando City take on DC United in a clash which both teams could really do with a win.
Orlando have won just one of their last five in the MLS but their schedule hasn’t been the easiest to navigate and I’m not convinced they have not been as bad as that recent record suggests. They were beaten in the US Open Cup last week so they will be eager to bounce back from that here.
They look to have the ideal opponent in DC United to do that against. Since the Wayne Rooney and Luciano Acosta partnership left Audi Field a couple of seasons ago there have been extremely slim pickings for the team from the capital.
Their recruitment has been questionable at best and they are going through coaches at a decent rate, which means constant chopping and changing in personnel as each new head coach looks to bring his own players in.
DC United have two open DP slots on their roster and you would imagine at least one of those will be filled this summer if not both of them so DC should improve in the second half of the season but right now they look a mess.
They have taken just two points from the last six matches and only won once on their travels and now they go to Orlando which is never an easy place to go anyway with the humid Floridian climate.
This looks like the perfect chance for Orlando to restore some confidence and form. I like a home win here.
FC Dallas v Inter Miami
The Independence Day round of matches take us to Texas in the early hours of Tuesday morning when FC Dallas look to get their campaign back on track when they play host to a frustratingly inconsistent Inter Miami team.
When you look at the personnel that Inter Miami currently have, and have had during their existence in MLS, you wonder how they can’t be a dominant force in MLS. One reason is their away form is terrible, particularly this term, but the thing which really holds them back is their discipline.
To be fair to Phil Neville, he is transitioning them from a perceived retirement home to a club who sign young players who get about the pitch and are vibrant but that takes time to bed in and get a togetherness, especially on the road and it is apparent that their only win on their travels this season came away to Seattle when the Sounders were focusing on the Champions League rather than MLS.
The warning signs might be beginning to light up in Dallas to be fair. They go into this contest with just the one win in six matches and even more alarmingly have lost their last two at Toyota Stadium, which is usually a huge fortress.
I refuse to believe with the quality they have going forward that they are going to remain in their slump forever and an Inter Miami side who don’t really offer a great deal going forward on their travels could be the perfect opposition to rebound against.
Only Chicago Fire have scored fewer goals than Inter Miami in the Eastern Conference this term while their three goals in seven away games is pitiful. Dallas are deserved favourites here.
LA Galaxy v CF Montreal
It’s hard to imagine two MLS teams created in more different images than the LA Galaxy and CF Montreal.
The Galaxy are the club that once signed David Beckham, Robbie Keane and Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Now, Mexico’s all-time leading international scorer Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez is the star man. Montreal is a combination of seasoned MLS veterans like Romell Quioto and Kei Kamara and some shrewd but relatively unheralded international signings. Even their “headliner” — former Tottenham Hotspur holding midfielder Victor Wanyama — is as workmanlike as stars come.
And yet Montreal come to Dignity Health Sports Park as the top team in the Eastern Conference following an impressive 2-1 victory away to the Seattle Sounders. It’s not smoke and mirrors either. Manager Wilfied Nancy’s bunch have posted the fourth-best away expected goal difference in MLS while taking at least a point in six of nine away. Their home numbers are above average also. And they don’t seem to have dipped in form since an injury to attacker Djordje Mihailovic in late May.
The Galaxy have strong home analytics numbers, but you could argue they’re deceptive because of how many times they’ve found themselves chasing the game. Manager Greg Vanney’s side have conceded first in five consecutive home matches, which is a good formula for racking up empty expected goals. They’ve also dropped a point in five of nine home games, which is not a good formula for anything. And they’ll have to get creative on the flanks Monday with both Kevin Cabral and Douglas Costa serving red card suspensions that resulted from their dismissals in a 3-2 defeat to Minnesota on Wednesday.
When factoring for home field, the three-way line paints these teams as evenly matched. But Montreal are clearly in a better moment, and possibly just better overall. Backing them to get at least a point here at 1.91 odds makes sense.
Written by an Andy verified content writer
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