MLS Preview and Prediction: DC United vs Orlando City

Competition: Major League Soccer – DC United vs. Orlando City SC

Venue: RFK Stadium – Wednesday, May 13th – 20:00 ET (01:00 BST)

Match Odds: DC 23/20 – Draw 9/4 – Orlando 5/2

Match Preview

DC United will look to extend their unbeaten run at home this season when they host Orlando City on Wednesday night in the first of several games before the end of the month.

DC have only lost once this season and are unbeaten in seven now. It speaks volumes of how good this DC side is as they haven’t hit their full potential yet but could go top of the Eastern Conference with at least a draw against Orlando.

Having won the reverse fixture last month with a last minute Luis Silva winner, DC are rightly favourites to record a third win in their last four.

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And the bonus of having Fabian Espindola back in the mix should inject more goals into Ben Olsen’s side, although the front man is a minor doubt for this one as he is carrying a knock and is being monitored day-to-day.

DC United’s 2015 MLS record: P9 – W5 – D3 – L1

Orlando City have struggled with injuries this season and have inadvertently failed to gain any consistency thus far.

Having not registered a win at home this season, perhaps they have a greater chance playing DC away as Orlando have won both of their games away from the Citrus Bowl this term.

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This will be a difficult task for the expansion franchise and much of their fate lies on how well Kaka plays. The Brazilian has not scored in three and needs to rediscover his form quickly.

Orlando City’s 2015 MLS record: P9 – W2 – D3 – L4

Both DC United and Orlando will play again at the weekend and so it will be important to try and pick up some extra points in this midweek clash.

Team News

DC United will be without Eddie Johnson and Collin Martin. Andrew Dykstra, Steve Birnbaum and Markus Halsti are all on their way back from injury and could feature. Fabian Espindola is day-to-day but should be fit in time for kickoff. Ben Olsen may reshuffle his side ahead of a busy period for the club.

Orlando City have several injury concerns as Tally Hall, Pedro Ribeiro, Martin Paterson, Kevin Molino, Lewis Neal and Tony Cascio are all out. Cyle Larin is set to continue as the lone striker after scoring his second of the campaign on Friday night against New England Revolution.

Key Points

DC United’s last five: D/D/W/W/D

Orlando City’s last five: L/W/L/L/D

Key Stat: DC United are undefeated in their last 14 home matches in MLS.

Key Player: Kaka – If Orlando is to make a game of this, Kaka will be the key to their attacking prowess. He always has the potential for brilliance and will look to show it in front of a nationwide audience.

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Score Prediction

DC United 2-1 Orlando City – Expecting an entertaining encounter between two sides looking for a win. DC have looked solid and are unlikely to lose this one, while Orlando’s determination for a win could see them caught out on the counter-attack.

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MLS Preview and Prediction: DC United vs Sporting Kansas City

Competition: Major League Soccer – DC United vs. Sporting Kansas City

Venue: RFK Stadium – Saturday, May 9th 19:00 ET (00:00 BST)

Match Odds: DC United 7/5 – Draw 23/10 – Sporting KC 15/8

Match Preview

DC United host Sporting Kansas City on Saturday night in what is expected to be a tight affair at RFK Stadium.

DC come into the clash unbeaten in their last six in MLS and have to be considered strong favourites to extend that streak to seven in front of their own fans.

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It has been a very strong to 2015 for DC as they haven’t been in a losing position at home all season, a stat unlikely to change on Saturday night.

DC United’s 2015 MLS record: P8 – W5 – D2 – L1

Sporting Kansas City have endured a stuttering start to 2015 and will hope to find a run of form soon as they look to push for a playoff spot in the Western Conference this term.

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With only one win in their last four this is a team that is lacking consistency, and with only one victory away from home, they are outsiders to even pick up a point here.

Sporting KC’s 2015 MLS record: P9 – W3 – D4 – L2

Especially when you consider they failed to score against DC on three occasions last term, with United winning two of those clashes.

Team News

DC United will be without Eddie Johnson, Markus Halsti, Steve Birnbaum and Collin Martin again as they will all sit out of this one. Andrew Dykstra is a doubt but Bill Hamid is expected to start in goal again anyway.

Sporting Kansas City have two major worries as Ike Opara and Chance Myers are both long-term absentees. Marcel De Jong is a doubt as it looks like SKC could field an unchanged team from the 1-0 win against Chicago Fire last week.

Key Points

DC United’s last five: W/D/D/W/W

Sporting KC’s last five: W/D/L/D/W

Key Stat: Sporting KC last won away at DC in March 2012 and have only won one of the last five meetings.

Key Player: Fabian Espindola – DC United’s star man has returned from suspension with a bang, with a goal and an assist in his past two, and will look for another impressive display in front of his own fans in this one.

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Score Prediction

DC United 1-0 Sporting Kansas City – DC United to extend their unbeaten run to seven with another home victory in what looks set to be a low-scoring affair. Sporting Kansas City have struggled to find consistency and will struggle to break down a resilient DC side that look to be flying.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Vancouver Whitecaps vs DC United

Competition: Major League Soccer – Vancouver Whitecaps vs. DC United 

Venue: BC Place – Saturday, April 25th – 22:30 ET (03:30 BST)

Match Odds: Vancouver Whitecaps 8/11 – Draw 5/2 – DC United 4/1

Match Preview

Vancouver Whitecaps welcome DC United to BC Place on Saturday evening as they look to remain top of the Western Conference against a DC side sitting in second in the Eastern Conference.

The Whitecaps have had an impressive start to the season, winning five of eight games, but Carl Robinson will know his side will be hard pushed for a win in this one.

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Robinson’s side got back to winning ways last weekend with a 1-0 victory over Real Salt Lake and he will be hoping Octavio Rivero will end his two-game goalless run after starting the season so well, with five goals in six games.

Ben Olsen’s DC have drawn back-to-back games and fallen off the pace a little. They are joint top of the Eastern Conference with the Red Bulls, second only on goal difference, but have played one game more than their rivals.

Goals look like they could be a tough thing to come by from this DC United forward line, as Chris Rolfe and Jairo Arrieta have netted just one each so far and the return of Fabian Espindola from suspension is a huge boost for last year’s Eastern Conference winners.

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DCU would have expected to win last weekend against Houston Dynamo and will be disappointed they couldn’t hold out at home to Owen Coyle’s side after taking the lead.

This is going to be a hard-fought game and if either side can come away with all three points it will be a great result.

Team News

Vancouver Whitecaps have three injury concerns as Andre Lewis, Marco Bustos and Diego Rodriguez could all be sidelined, while Kendall Watson is just one yellow card away from a suspension after racking up four cautions already.

DC United have four sidelined as Markus Halsti, Eddie Johnson, Steve Birnbaum and Collin Martin are all struggling with injuries. Olsen knows his side will be in for a difficult tie, playing against a Whitecaps side who are the joint top-scorers so far this campaign.

Key Points

Vancouver Whitecaps’ last five: W/W/D/L/W

DC United’s last five: L/W/W/D/D

Key Stat: Octavio Rivero has scored just one goal less than the whole of the DC United side combined this season.

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Key Player: Pedro Morales – The Vancouver playmaker has three assists so far this campaign and his range of passing can unlock even the toughest of defences. If DCU can stop him getting on the ball they have a good chance here.

Score Prediction

Vancouver Whitecaps 2-1 DC United – The Whitecaps have what it takes to edge this one and home advantage will play a part as they are likely to remain top of the Western Conference and MLS Supporters Shield standings after eight weeks.

MLS Preview and Prediction: DC United vs Houston Dynamo

Competition: Major League Soccer – DC United vs. Houston Dynamo

Venue: RFK Stadium – Saturday, April 18th – 19:00 ET (00:00 BST)

Match Odds: DC United 19/20 – Draw 23/10 – Houston Dynamo 3/1

Match Preview

DC United will host Owen Coyle’s Houston Dynamo on Saturday night with the opportunity to solidify their place at the top of the Eastern Conference.

United remain unbeaten at home in 2015 and are now unbeaten in their last eleven home matches in MLS, so form is against Houston for this clash.

DC have yet to deliver a performance that justifies their league position, yet they remain a force in MLS despite putting in some below-par performances.

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Though you have to assume that the performances will improve once star striker Fabian Espindola returns from suspension at the end of April.

DC United’s 2015 MLS record: P5 – W3 – D1 – L1

Houston have stuttered into the new season with an opening day victory and then a winless run of four. That run ended last time out as they beat Montreal Impact 3-0 and they will be hoping to build on that result on the road in this one.

With Houston yet to win away from home in 2015, it’s tough to see past a home win here, though you can never rule anything out.

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An away win for Houston would be a shock but MLS is known for its unpredictability as we saw with the Rapids beating Dallas away last week.

Houston Dynamo’s 2015 MLS record: P6 – W2 – D2 – L2

The Dynamo can look to improve in the next few weeks knowing that new signing, Erick Torres, will be arriving soon. Until then Will Bruin and Giles Barnes will need to continue to lead the attack, with Barnes already on two goals this season.

Team News

DC United: Eddie Johnson, Markus Halsti, Steve Birnbaum and Collin Martin all remain out. Fabian Espindola is serving the last of his six-game ban and Nick DeLeon is a doubt so Michael Farfan could deputise.

Houston Dynamo: Raul Rodriguez and Oscar Boniek Garcia are both expected to shake off minor injuries to start the game, while Giles Barnes should continue up front for the Dynamo.

Key Points

DC United’s last five in MLS: W/L/W/W/D

Houston Dynamo’s last five in MLS: L/D/D/L/W

Key Stat: DC United have only conceded four goals this season, all while playing the New York Red Bulls, and will look to record a fourth clean sheet against the Dynamo on Saturday.

Key Player: Chris Pontius – The front man is key to the DC attack as they look to hurt teams on the counter, and stealing three points is a specialty of DC’s. Pontius will look to link up with Arrieta to prove the difference in this one.

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Score Prediction

DC United 1-0 Houston Dynamo – DC to edge another one at home by the one goal as Houston’s troubles away from home look set to continue.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Orlando City vs DC United

Competition: Major League Soccer – Orlando City vs DC United

Venue: Citrus Bowl – Friday, April 3 – 19:00 ET (00:00 BST – Saturday, April 4)

Match Odds: Orlando City 5/4 – Draw 23/10 – DC United 11/5

Match Preview

Orlando City host DC United on Friday night in their third MLS home game of the season in what they will be hoping will be their first win at the Citrus Bowl.

Orlando have definitely made their mark on MLS so far this season and most notably their star signing Kaka has stolen all of the headlines.

With only one point separating the two sides, this is a chance for Orlando to set the tone for their season as Brek Shea and Rafael Ramos return to the side after being away on international duty.

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With Kaka being a doubt, there is a chance he may not play and it will be interesting to see if Adrian Heath’s side can cope without their talisman.

Orlando City’s record in MLS 2015: P4 – W1 – D2 – L1

DC United have had an indifferent start to 2015 having managed to win both home games and lose the one away game.

It seems that this DC side is suffering with the suspension of Fabian Espindola who was instrumental in their 2014 campaign that saw them win the Eastern Conference.

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They are seemingly lacking a creative spark in the final third but are still managing to grind out results. And with only a few weeks left on the Espindola ban, you can’t help but feel that DC will be a force once again this season.

DC United’s record in MLS 2015: P3 – W2 – D0 – L1

Team News

Orlando City’s Tally Hall and Martin Paterson remain sidelined. Christian Higuita, Carlos Rivas, Lewis Neal, Tony Cascio and Kaka are all doubts for this one but are expected to be pushing to start if they can. Brek Shea and Rafeal Ramos are expected to start after returning from international duty.

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DC United’s Fabian Espindola is still serving his six-game ban. Eddie Johnson and Markus Halsti remain out, while Steve Birnbaum suffered a sprained ankle against LA Galaxy and will miss the next 4-6 weeks, so Kofi Opare is expected to come in. Luis Silva remains doubtful, while Chris Pontius and Jairo Arrieta are set to continue up front.

Key Points

Orlando City’s form: D/W/L/D

DC United’s form: W/L/W

Key Stat: Orlando City are yet to win at home in MLS.

Key Player: Kevin Molino – The midfielder is back from international duty with Trinidad and Tobago and should be as threatening as ever. His pace could prove the difference in this clash.

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Score Prediction

Orlando City 1–1 DC United – DC United haven’t won on the road this season, while Orlando are yet to win at home, so everything is pointing towards a draw, although we can expect a couple of goals.

MLS Preview and Prediction: DC United vs LA Galaxy

Competition: Major League Soccer – DC United vs LA Galaxy 

Venue: RFK Stadium – Saturday, March 28 – 19:00 ET (23:00 GMT – Live on Sky Sports 5)

Match Odds: DC United 9/5 – Draw 12/5 – LA Galaxy 7/5

Match Preview

DC United host an unbeaten LA Galaxy side at RFK Stadium tomorrow evening in one of the standout fixtures of the weekend.

United, who finished top of the Eastern Conference in 2014, have started slowly this campaign and need to start reproducing the form we saw from them last season if they are to be a force again.

Galaxy have won once and drawn twice in their opening three and they will hope to continue that unbeaten run with a positive away result in DC.

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Bruce Arena needs to put an end to the Galaxy’s winless seven-game away streak, but this will be a tough ask at RFK Stadium.

DC have a tough run of fixtures coming up so need to make their home advantage count against the reigning MLS Cup champions. They will take consideration to Galaxy’s winless run on the road but they haven’t beaten their opponents since 2008.

Head coach Ben Olsen will be delighted that his side are not weakened by any international call-ups this week and the fact that LA are without Robbie Keane and Gyasi Zardes will be a worry for their supporters.

Team News

DC have four main injury concerns, Markus Halsti and Michael Seaton (knee), Luis Silva (hamstring) and Eddie Johnson (heart condition) will all be absent for the tie. Fabian Espindola is still suspended and without him, they have only netted once so far. Chris Pontius is likely to start alongside Jairo Arrieta once again in attack.

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LA have two injuries to deal with, Kenney Walker (groin) and Brian Perk (leg). But international games have decimated the Galaxy squad as Robbie Keane, Gyasi Zardes, Oscar Sorto, Bradford Jamieson IV and Jaime Penedo will all miss out. We can expect both Stefan Ishizaki and Jose Villarreal to continue to impress while Edson Buddle will need to score the goals in the absence of Keane and Zardes.

Key Points

DC United’s form: W/L

LA Galaxy’s form: W/D/D

Key Stat: Unbeaten – As mentioned, Galaxy haven’t lost to DC since 2008 – a streak of ten games, and they will be hoping to continue that run this weekend.

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Key Player: Jose Villarreal – The young winger has made a great start to the season and has reportedly turned down a US U23 call-up to play this game. He has assisted goals in the past two games, and picked up a goal in the first. Expect him to be involved if the Galaxy are to find their first away win in seven.

Score Prediction

DC United 1-2 LA Galaxy – Bruce Arena’s men have started the season well and the squad is looking good. They can take advantage of DC’s slow start but will be worked hard for a win, especially with so many players out on international duty.

MLS Preview and Prediction: New York Red Bulls vs DC United

Competition: Major League Soccer – New York Red Bulls vs. DC United

Venue: Red Bull Arena – Sunday, March 22 – 17:00 ET (21:00 GMT – Live on Sky Sports 5)

Match Odds: New York Red Bulls 10/11 – Draw 5/2 – DC United 3/1

Match Preview

New York Red Bulls host DC United in their first home game of the new MLS season on Sunday evening. This has the potential to be a cracker as the Eastern Conference sides renew one of the oldest MLS rivalries as they go head-to-head for the Atlantic Cup once again.

With both sides hopeful of a playoff berth again this season, New York and DC will both see this as a must win game – even if only for the bragging rights at this early stage of the campaign.

The Red Bulls have had a turbulent offseason after losing the great Thierry Henry as well as Tim Cahill and head coach Mike Petke, but have managed to shore up their defence with the addition Ronald Zubar and have also strengthened in midfield with Sacha Kljestan coming in.

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Both sides were on bye weeks last weekend so will come into the game fresh and both will be looking for all three points.

The Red Bulls earned a hard fought point away to Sporting Kansas City in their opening game and will need to be at their best once again if they are to get a result from this one.

Ben Olsen’s DC United are one of the favourites to retain their Eastern Conference title this season as they look like a dangerous side despite playing without two of their best players in Fabian Espindola and Eddie Johnson.

The 1-0 win against the Montreal Impact looks like a great result as Montreal are significantly better than last season so far and have reached the semifinals of the CONCACAF Champions League.

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However, we are expecting the Red Bulls to challenge USMNT goalkeeper Bill Hamid on Sunday night in what should be a close encounter.

With the joint-best defence in 2014, DC United will provide a real test for Bradley Wright-Phillips and his Red Bulls teammates this weekend in what has the potential to be the game of the weekend. For any UK fans reading, it’s live on Sky Sports 5 and isn’t one you want to miss.

Team News

New York Red Bulls: Peguy Luyindula could come in for Mike Grella on the left wing. Roy Miller is a doubt but is expected to feature at left-back. Ronald Zubar has a hamstring problem but he is also expected to make the starting lineup.

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DC United: Eddie Johnson, Luis Silva and Markus Halsti are all out. Michael Seaton is a doubt and Fabian Espindola is still serving a ban that won’t see him return until Week 7. Taylor Kemp could start at left-back but is a doubt with a groin injury.

Key Points

New York Red Bulls’ form: D

DC United’s form: W

Key Stat: Bradley Wright-Phillips failed to register a single shot and only had one touch in the box when the Red Bulls played Sporting Kansas City on the opening weekend.

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Key Player: Jairo Arrieta – New DC United striker, Jairo Arrieta arrived via a trade with Orlando and scored in his first game against Montreal last time out. With Espindola and Johnson both out, Arrieta will be the main threat in front of goal.

Score Prediction

New York Red Bulls 1-2 DC United – This one could go either way, but DC United may edge this after being eliminated from the playoffs by the Red Bulls last term. Will revenge be served at Red Bull Arena on Sunday?

MLS Preview and Prediction: DC United vs Montreal Impact

Competition: Major League Soccer – DC United vs Montreal Impact

Venue: RFK Stadium – Saturday, March 7th – 15:00 ET (20:00 GMT)

Match Odds: DC United 10/11 – Draw 5/2 – Montreal Impact 3/1

Match Preview

DC United host Montreal Impact on Saturday in the opening weekend of the new Major League Soccer season in a matchup that pits the top and bottom teams from the Eastern Conference in 2014 against each other.

Both sides have been active in recent weeks, both playing competitively in the CONCACAF Champions League and should come into the game raring to go.

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DCU will be without their talisman, Fabian Espindola for the clash as he is serving a six-game suspension in MLS. So the 2014 Eastern Conference winners will need to find goals from elsewhere.

DC United’s MLS home record in 2014: P17 – W11 – D4 – L2

Montreal come into the opening weekend in the better form out of the two after successfully moving past Pachuca into the CONCACAF Champions League semifinals on Tuesday night.

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Statistically the worst team in MLS last term, the Impact will need to display great signs of improvement if they are to turn the tide in the league.

Montreal Impact’s MLS away record in 2014: P17 – W0 – D5 – L12

DC United are far from their strongest going into the new season and anything can happen on the opening day, so Montreal will be in good spirits in what should be an entertaining affair.

Team News

DC United: Fabian Espindola (suspended), Markus Halsti (leg), Luis Silva (soft tissue damage), Eddie Johnson (heart condition) and Michael Seaton (knee) are all out.

Montreal Impact: Andres Romero misses the clash with a thigh injury.

Key Points

DC United’s form: N/A

Montreal Impact’s form: N/A

Key Stat: Montreal failed to win a single game away from home in the 2014 MLS season.

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Key Player: Bill Hamid – The MLS Goalkeeper of the Year for 2014 was a huge part of why DC was so successful last campaign. Expect him to prove the difference once again at the weekend.

Score Prediction

DC United 2-0 Montreal Impact – Can’t see any surprises here despite Montreal’s Champions League success in the week. DC should be winning this comfortably in front of their own fans.