Welcome to my MLS Soccer picks, and with the season already well underway, there’s plenty of betting opportunities available for us all to make more money off the bookies.
The action is heating up in the MLS with teams jostling for play-off places, and my next pick features two teams that are vying for post-season involvement.
New England Revolution take to the road to face Philadelphia Union at the Talen Energy Stadium – Kickoff: 1900hrs (EST)
Philadelphia Union take on New England Revolution at their Talen Energy Stadium in Pennsylvania with the hosts currently occupying a Final Series play-off position in 5th place in the Eastern Conference.
The hosts hold a valuable four point margin over tonight’s visitors, New England Revolution, and no doubt the home side will be keen to maintain their play-off status by taking all three points here.
Philadelphia have won four of their last six matches overall with wins gained over Chicago Fire, Houston Dynamo, New England Revolution (away from home) and New York City.
The fact that The Union have already chalked up a win over tonight’s opponents, away from home too, could well prove to be an important psychological edge for the hosts as well.
In addition, Philadelphia Union have proved they can beat the top teams too as their recent 2-0 home win over third placed New York City testifies.
As well as winning the last two league encounters against New England Revolution, Philadelphia Union have also registered wins in their last three matches against the Revolution, recording 2-0, 3-0 and 3-0 victories respectively.
Home Form & Team News
Although they are well placed to grab a play-off spot in the post-season, things haven’t always gone smoothly for Philadelphia especially on home turf where they’ve suffered defeats to Orlando City, Toronto FC, Atlanta United and LA Galaxy.
Philadelphia started their campaign on home turf in strong fashion as they’d lost just once in their first seven matches, but recent weeks have seen a little bit of a slump in form.
A home record of 6-2-4 20/14 underlines the problems they’ve had in maintaining consistency, but their recent dominance over New England could stand them in good stead in tonight’s clash as they look to nail down a top six finish in the Conference.
Having won their last two matches on the trot, The Union are expected to remain with the same XI and also their familiar 4-3-3 formation with leading goalscorer, Cory Burke (6 goals) spearheading the attack.
There’s no fresh injury concerns for manager Jim Curtin other than the existing absentee, defender Mark McKenzie along with Adam Najem and Josh Yaro who are both rated as doubtful.
Forward Fabrice Picault (5 goals, 3 assists) is expected to make a return to the starting line-up after serving his one-match ban which will be a welcome boost for the hosts.
NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION
New England Revolution come into this important Eastern Conference tussle four points adrift of the top six and a Final Series play-off spot and with time running out fast, the away side need a result in Pennsylvania this evening.
This may well be easier said than done for the visitors though as they’re without a league win from their last seven outings which includes five defeats.
Losses to LA Galaxy, Minnesota United, New York Red Bulls, Philadelphia Union and DC United is not the sort of form a team needs if they’re serious about claiming a top six spot.
In addition, during this recent poor seven-match sequence without a win, New England Revolution have conceded 2 goals or more in six of them – so their prospects don’t look very good for this visit.
By contrast, New England have captured just three league wins from their last 16 matches overall, which, incidentally, were all at home against Toronto FC, New York Red Bulls and DC United.
However, New England’s ordinary form has also affected their fortunes on the road this season as well, as we’ll now see below…
Away Form & Team News
New England Revolution’s average form has made a big dent in their results away from home as they’ve managed to capture just one away win all season.
An away record of 1-5-5 16/23 is not the sort of form to take to an in-form Philadelphia Union outfit, with their one success being a 2-0 win away at Houston Dynamo back in early April.
Since then, The Revs have endured a barren spell of nine matches on the road without a victory, and it’s hard to see how their fortunes will suddenly change against Philadelphia.
In addition, New England have conceded 2 goals or more in 9 of their 11 away matches to date which has contributed to their poor away record this term.
On the team news front, The Revs will continue to be without defender Chris Tierney with an ACL injury while midfielder Scott Caldwell will sit out a suspension following a red card against DC United.
Wilfried Zahibo (4 goals) is likely to deputise for Caldwell and will try to link up with the likes of Cristian Penilla (9 goals, 6 assists).
Forwards Teal Bunbury (11 goals) and Diego Fagundez (7 goals, 6 assists) are expected to continue up front where they pose an attacking threat, but it’s been the defence that has let them down this season.
Philadelphia Union’s recent dominance in these encounters has seen the home side being ahead at half-time and at full-time in 5 of the last 7 matches against New England in all competitions.
Combine this with Philadelphia having won the last three encounters against New England Revolution as well as the visitors conceding goals on a regular basis, and you can see why the home side are favourites to bag the points tonight.
The Bet: Philadelphia Union -137 SportsBetting.ag