This Weekend’s Best MLS Bets – October 17-18, 2020
Chicago Fire and Sporting Kansas City kick off the upcoming round of MLS fixtures on Saturday afternoon, with ten games taking place across America’s top division this weekend.
There are two matchups on Saturday, October 17, with a further eight taking place on Sunday, October 18. However, some games offer greater betting opportunities than others.
Join me as I look at this weekend’s best MLS bets.
Orlando City to Win (3.20)
With five wins and five draws to their name, Orlando City is the only team in MLS that has avoided defeat in their previous ten outings. Oscar Pareja’s men currently sit fourth in the Eastern Conference, seven points ahead of the Red Bulls.
Granted, the New York club has improved in recent weeks. Under new head coach Gerhard Struber, the team beat Atlanta United last weekend before holding conference-leader Toronto FC to a draw on Wednesday. But the Red Bulls are certainly not the force they once were.
17-year-old Caden Clark has taken American soccer by storm lately. The teenager netted on debut before earning his side a point last time out, becoming the youngest player to score in his first two MLS appearances. However, many of the Red Bulls’ experienced campaigners have not been good enough.
The Lions secured a comfortable 3-1 victory over the Red Bulls a fortnight ago, and I’m expecting a similar outcome this time around. Strangely, the home side is the bookies’ favorite to win on Sunday. But that makes the price for the away win even more attractive.
Check out my full betting preview of Red Bulls vs. Orlando for more of my thoughts.
FC Cincinnati vs. DC United – Under 2.5 Goals (1.75)
In my betting preview for this game, I predicted that FC Cincinnati and DC United will produce a draw. However, backing the draw is always a risky option. If you’re looking for a safer bet, I suggest looking at the goal markets for this clash.
With a combined total of just 25 goals between them this year, it is hardly surprising that Cincinnati and DC find themselves at the bottom of the Eastern Conference. Cincinnati is the lowest scorer in the East, while DC is the second-lowest scorer in the division.
In total, half of Cincinnati’s 18 games have produced under 2.5 goals. Jaap Stam’s men have recorded four goalless draws since the MLS is Back Tournament, while recent games against the Red Bulls and Toronto both produced just a single goal.
Meanwhile, the Black & Red has been involved in eight games that have produced under 2.5 goals. Since Ben Olsen’s sacking, interim head coach Chad Ashton has experimented with the team. But DC clearly still lacks a cutting edge in attack.
And just in case you’re not already convinced that this is likely to be a low-scoring affair, let me remind you that Cincinnati and DC drew 0-0 at the end of August.
Seattle Sounders to Win (2.10)
San Jose has enjoyed an eye-catching turnaround of late. The Quakes looked dead and buried following a dismal eight-game winless run, but having won four of their last five encounters, they have thrust themselves into play-off contention.
Still, I think it’s important that we don’t get too carried away with San Jose’s recent revival. Let’s not forget that Matias Almeyda’s men have conceded an inexcusable 43 goals in 18 regular-season games this year, and seven of those goals were scored by the Sounders.
Seattle crushed San Jose 7-1 last month, with Raul Ruidiaz and Joevin Jones both netting doubles. It is difficult to ignore the manner with which Brian Schmetzer’s men blew away the Quakes in their previous meeting.
Considering the Sounders are top of the Western Conference with a game in hand over the three teams directly below them in the table, you’d be foolish not to take advantage of the high for the away win in this fixture.
You can find my betting preview for this game here.
Portland Timbers vs. LAFC Over 3.5 Goals (2.00)
Remarkably, 15 of LAFC’s 17 games have produced over 2.5 goals this term, with 13 of Portland’s 17 games seeing three or more goals scored. But the bookies have obviously cottoned on to the teams’ high-scoring antics.
You can get odds of around 1.40 for Portland and LAFC to produce three or more goals at Providence Park on Sunday. But the odds jump to 2.00 for over 3.5 goals, so I recommend going for the higher option.
I predicted that Portland will beat LAFC, but in all honesty, this game could go either way. Bob Bradley’s side has been wildly unpredictable this season, making it very difficult to gauge how the team will fare from one game to the next.
The Timbers have already faced the Black & Gold twice this year, with over 3.5 goals being scored on both occasions. The teams drew 2-2 at the MLS is Back Tournament before LAFC beat Portland 4-2 in September.
Needless to say, picking the winner of this game may not be the best idea. But one thing is certain – there will be goals galore.