MLS Regular Season Ends With Conferences Races Undecided

Kevin Stott

Wednesday, October 24, 2018 5:43 PM UTC

Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2018 5:43 PM UTC

The 2018 MLS Regular Season will wrap up on Sunday with 11 matches and 1st place in both the Eastern and Western conferences still up for grabs as well as the last two MLS Cup Playoff berths being contended for. 

MLS Capper Record Last Week: 2-2-0

MLS Capper October Record : 12-3-0

Orlando City SC (8-4-21) at New York Red Bulls (21-5-7)Sunday, 4:30 p.m. ETFree MLS Pick: Red Bulls GLBest Lines Offered All: Bovada

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Orlando City SC won its first match in the L13 (1-2-10) in matchweek 33, topping Columbus 2-1 in Extra Time in the Sunshine State to prove it can still win a match and that it can still score more than 1 goal in a game. Dominic Dwyer (13 goals), Sacha Kljestan (6 goals) and the Lions may have finally put the sheep’s bladder in the net a couple of times after a 500-plus minute scoreless spell, but it’s hard to see where this team will get 90 minutes of motivation in this particular apathetic spot in the Garden State with many in the franchise probably more-than-ready for the offseason.

  • OCSC has been outscored 31-16 its L13 matches (1-2-10)
  • OCSC 73 GA is the highest in MLS (2.21 gpg allowed)
  • OCSC -30 GD worst in MLS (43 GF-73 GA)

Bradley Wright-Phillips (20) goals Daniel Royer (11 goals), Alejandro Romero Gamarra (6 goals) and the Red Bulls (68 points) can overtake 1st-place Atlanta United FC (69 points) in the Eastern Conference, so this game matters for GK Luis Robles and RBNY (LDWWWW) who can still end with the best Record in the league with a victory here and a Five Stripes Loss (ATL is at defending MLS champs TFC on Sunday).

A look at the L5 meetings in this Eastern Conference series (OCSC 4-3 RBNY, RBNY 3-1 OCSC, OCSC 1-0 RBNY, RBNY 2-0 OCSC, OCSC 1-1 RBNY) we see the two split at 2-1-2 with 2 Overs in the L2 meetings (11 goals combined) and the Home team an unbeaten 4-1-0, outscoring the visitors, 11-5.

  • RBNY W4 straight (PHIL-SJ-ATL-TFC), 3 Clean Sheets (8 GF-1 GA)
  • RBNY W5 straight at Home, 4 straight Clean Sheets, Unders (6 GF-0 GA L4)
  • RBNY last Home Loss was on July 28 (RBNY 2-3 CLB)

So, this one matters for RBNY (+325 to win MLS Cup) and doesn’t for OCSC (LDLLLW), with the Site an advantage as well as the fact it’s the last fixture of the Regular Season also holding some handicapping weight for the Red Bulls (+350 to win MLS Cup).

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If the Audi #MLSCupPlayoffs started today...#RBNY pic.twitter.com/JjqIxjVPva

— New York Red Bulls (@NewYorkRedBulls) October 24, 2018
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Houston Dynamo (9-8-16) at LA Galaxy (13-9-11)Sunday, 4:30 p.m. ETFree MLS Pick: LA Galaxy GL

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The LA Galaxy (25/1 to win MLS Cup) may eventually lose DP Zlatan Ibrahimović to Real Madrid, but for now this club is focusing on leapfrogging 6th-place Real Salt Lake (49 points) on Sunday as they head into the last week of play in 7th place, sitting on 26 points. So, trying to earn a MLS Cup Playoff berth means that winning and getting all 3 points is the only thing the Galaxy (48 points) seemingly have in their control, meaning a likely quick and nervy fast Pace from the start in a meaningful match where backing the Over seems like a pretty wise approach. (RSL has already played 34 matches and has a -3 GD to the Galaxy’s +3, meaning a Draw gets LAG in).

  • GALAXY are 8-4-4 at Home
  • GALAXY are 7-4-3 vs DYNAMO at Home in MLS (20 GF-13 GA)
  • GALAXY-DYNAMO scored 15 goals L3 (HOU 3-2 LA, HOU 3-3 LA, LA 2-2 HOU)
  • GALAXY-DYNAMO at least 2 Goals scored by Half L3 (1-1, 1-2, 1-1)

The Dynamo (LWDWLLL) will head in losers of 3 straight and looking at the L5 matches between these two (HOU 3-2 LA, HOU 3-3 LA, LA 2-2 HOU, HOU 0-1 LA, LA 1-0 HOU) shows 3 straight overs with the Galaxy earning consecutive 1-0 victories in the previous two meetings in stone-cold Unders in games scoreless at Halftime.

  • DYNAMO 1-5-10 Road Record the 2nd-worst in Western Conference (MIN)
  • DYNAMO winles in month of October (0-0-3, 5 GF-11 GA)
  • DYNAMO last Road Win was on May 20 @ FIRE (FIRE 2-3 HOU)

It’s simple here: The Pace should be quick with one team caring and the other probably pretending to treat this one like it’s playoff game for some minutes before succumbing to the reality that it has been an awful season and that this team will go out with another loss with the last 45 minutes being owned by the desperate hosts.

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No one has been better in 2018. 👑 pic.twitter.com/6PAbUvj2Ga

— Seattle Sounders FC (@SoundersFC) October 23, 2018
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San José Earthquakes (4-9-20) at Seattle Sounders FC (17-5-11)Sunday, 4:30 p.m. ETFree MLS Pick: Sounders GL

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With Nicolás Lodeiro (Uruguay) and Gustav Svensson (Sweden) now back after having served international duty for their native countries, Head Coach Brian Schmetzer and his rolling Sounders (14/1 to win MLS Cup, Intertops) has his team just where he wants them, with a full Roster with wonderful depth—despite the Summer retirement of club, league and national icon Clint Dempsey—and confident from what seems to be a now perennial late-Summer/early-Fall winning roll which has Seattle solidly in the coming 2018 MLS Cup Playoffs and ready to make a run at making it to the Finals, something this team has done the L2 seasons, winning it all in 2016 vs Toronto FC, the same team the sounders lost to in last season’s MLS Cup Finals.

  • SOUNDERS 14-2-2 L16 (36 GF-14 GA); W4 straight (13 GF-4 GA)
  • SOUNDERS have allowed just 16 goals in L16 matches (1.00 gpg)
  • SOUNDERS have allowed least goals in Western Conference (36)

The Sounders (WWLLWWWW) will enter this Matchweek 36 fixture in a comfortable position, facing an Earthquakes (LLLLLLD) side done for a long time with an MLS-low 4 Wins, 3 fewer than the next closest club (COL). Looking at the L5 matches in this Western Conference series (SJ 0-1 SEA, SEA 3-0 SJ, SJ 1-1 SEA, SJ 1-1 SEA, SEA 2-0 SJ), we see Lodeiro and the Sounders to be an unbeaten 3-2-0 (8 GF-2 GA) with Seattle GK Stefan Frei getting 3 Clean Sheets over that span.

  • EARTHQUAKES last goal vs SOUNDERS was April 8, 2017 (1-1)
  • EARTHQUAKES are just 2-3-11 on Road
  • EARTHQUAKES 5-1-7 lifetime at SOUNDERS (12 GF-20 GA)
  • EARTHQUAKES 69 Goals Allowed highest in Western Conference

With Raúl Ruidíaz (7 goals), Lodeiro (8 goals), Will Bruin (7 goals), Víctor Rodríguez (5 goals) and the Sounders playing their last regular season home fixture in one of the most soccer-friendly venues in the MLS, expect an impressive performance from the hosts who want to get some flow with their international guys back, keep their winning ways going and entertain the CenturyLink faithful while heading into the postseason on a positive note after finishing so strong.

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