Chicago Fire vs. Columbus Crew
Saturday, September 12th, 2020 – 3:30pm EST at Soldier Field
Chicago Is a Dumpster Fire
After losing five of their last seven matches, Chicago finds themselves languishing at the bottom of the Eastern Conference. Everyone knew Chicago would struggle to sniff the playoffs this season, but to be sitting bottom is an absolute disaster for manager Raphael Wicky. Once a star striker, Robert Beric seems to have been completely exposed in this league after he scored nine goals in France’s top division in 2019. The Beric experiment seems to have been cut short, with Robert finding himself on the bench in their last outing.
Filling the Slovenian's shoes is 6’4’’ New Zealander Elliot Collier. Collier allows Fire to play their same style but gives them different options as the forward makes more adventurous and threatening runs compared to Beric, which is pretty much a route one forward. Chicago also has allowed the most goals in the conference at sixteen in ten matches. Not a great situation to be in when one of the top teams MLS has to offer is traveling to your city.
Only Two for the Crew
Columbus possesses one of the best defenses in MLS history throughout the first ten games into the campaign. Only allowing two goals thus far, including a three hundred plus minute shut out streak, see Columbus still sitting as the best team in the Eastern Conference with twenty-three points and a game in hand on second-place Toronto. With that shutout streak, Crew has won two straight matches.
Columbus has had a weeklong break from playing any matches, and even in the last match, they rotated pretty heavily. I expect a full-strength Crew team Saturday afternoon versus Chicago. Fire will really struggle to make it through Crew’s midfield, let alone breaking down Columbus’s backline. I see Crew delivering a beating this weekend. Top sports betting websites have Crew at +125, and that is a price I cannot pass up.
My Pick: Columbus Crew to Win +125 (2.25) at Bovada (visit our Bovada Review)
Sporting Kansas City vs. Minnesota United
Sunday, September 13th, 2020 - 8:30pm EST at Sporting Park
Kansas City Cannot Find Their Feet
After a tremendous start to the league, Kansas City has fallen off of a cliff since the restart. We’ve spoken of this team a few times before, and have made a nice profit from their matches in the goal-scoring market. I plan to ride that trend as these two teams have faced off twice since July, and both times saw both teams score and over 2.5 goals.
For Kansas City, six straight matches have had both teams score. As we have mentioned in previous MLS Soccer Picks articles, Kansas City simply cannot defend. They were one of the worst defenses last season and seemed to have found a way to stop the bleeding during the early days of the season. Come to find out, their defense is a complete fraud and will ship roughly the same amount of goals this season as last. At least KC can score the ball, which makes them a profitable team to bet on.
A Set Back for a Major Comeback
Just over a week ago I was wondering what in the hell was going on in Minnesota. This is a team that did not lose a match through their first seven matches this season and I thought could actually make a nice playoff run once star center half Ike Opara recovered from his injury. Well, to everyone’s surprise, Minnesota managed to lose four straight matches. It seems the lack of Opara’s presence finally caught up to United as they let in three goals in three of the four straight losses.
Things looked pretty grim in Minnesota, but manager Adrian Heath instilled newfound confidence in his boys. They have now won two matches on the bounce, scoring a combined seven goals over the two matches. Hence the reason I will be betting on this match. It’s a match that sees two in form offensive teams that truly struggle to defend their own nets. Give me all of that.
San Jose Earthquakes vs. Los Angeles Galaxy
Sunday, September 13th, 2020 - 11:00pm EST at Avaya Stadium
Sound the Alarms in San Jose
In case you missed it, San Jose got abused for ninety straight minutes versus Seattle during the week. They lost 7-1 in a match that can only be described as a dumpster fire. The Quakes were shocking defensively. Jordan Morris literally walked from the halfway line into the Earthquakes' box and passed it into the net. Not a defender in sight.
Now we see San Jose at home against one of the most in-form teams in the MLS. Los Angeles has to be licking its chops at the prospect of squaring off against this abysmal San Jose defense. I mean good Lord; this side has allowed twenty-six goals in nine matches. Good for nearly three per match. To give the Quakes some credit, they are still scoring loads of goals with fifteen goals for this season.
Galaxy Is Out of This World
I will admit it, I was really low on this Galaxy team coming into this season, and that was with a healthy Chicharito and Dos Santos. Here we are nine matches later, and Galaxy is ascending up the table. Winning four straight matches without two of their three best players is a statement to the squad and Guillermo Schelotto’s ability and confidence.
Cristian Pavon, on loan from Boca Juniors, has thrown his name in the hat for best player in MLS, and you cannot blame anyone who may think that. Pavon has six goals and an assist this year, most coming after dos Santos and Chicharito fell to injury. Good news for Galaxy, Chicharito should be fit to play this weekend. Galaxy is priced to win this match with top sportsbooks at +105, which is an incredible price. After we hit our #SquidSpecial last weekend, I am going back to the well as it has so much value.