MLS Preview and Prediction: San Jose Earthquakes vs Philadelphia Union

Competition: Major League Soccer – San Jose Earthquakes vs. Philadelphia Union 

Venue: Avaya Stadium – Saturday, September 5 – 22:30 ET (03:30 BST)

Match Odds: San Jose Earthquakes 10/11 – Draw 23/10 – Philadelphia Union 3/1

Match Preview

San Jose Earthquakes take on Philadelphia Union in one of just five MLS games this weekend in what is a big game for both clubs as the end of the regular season approaches.

San Jose come into this game in incredible form, having won their last four in MLS. The Earthquakes have shown great consistency of late with victories over Western Conference leaders LA Galaxy and Eastern Conference leaders DC United proving how good they can be.

They come into this game off the back of four consecutive clean sheets too, which just goes to show how hard it will be for Philadelphia to score this Saturday as the Quakes look rightful favourites.

San Jose Earthquakes’ record in MLS: P26 – W11 – D5 – L10 

Photo: Denise McCooey

Photo: Denise McCooey

Philadelphia come into this game rock bottom of the Eastern Conference with only one win in their last seven matches.

Philadelphia have conceded 12 goals in their last five away games – an average of 2.4 goals per match – so it’s clear there are several problems with the side. However, despite this they have shored thing up in recent weeks with back-to-back clean sheets away from home adding a degree of confidence ahead of this weekend’ clash.

Philadelphia Union’s record in MLS: P27 – W7 – D6 – L14  

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This will be the only regular season meeting between the two clubs this season. The last game between these saw the Union win 4-2 at home but San Jose have never lost at home to Philly in MLS.

Team News

For San Jose Earthquakes, both Steven Lenhart and Innocent Emeghara are ruled out, while Clarence Goodson, Jordan Stewart and Jean-Baptiste Pierazzi are doubts heading into this game. Matias Perez Garcia is struggling with an injury to his left leg and may sit out again. Cordell Cato, Sanna Nyassi, Anibal Godoy and Marc Pelosi are all away on international duty.

Vicente Nogueira and Andrew Wenger are both doubts for this clash, while Brian Sylvestre will be facing a late fitness test after missing out last time. Cristian Maidana is suspended after picking up a red card last time out.

Key Points

San Jose Earthquakes’ last five in MLS: L/W/W/W/W

Philadelphia Union’s last five in MLS: L/D/D/W/L 

Key Stat: San Jose Earthquakes have won each of their last four games in MLS without conceding a goal.

Key Player: Quincy Amarikwa – The 27-year-old American has shown some good form of late and we expect him to add to his four goals this weekend against Philadelphia.

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Score Prediction

San Jose Earthquakes 2-0 Philadelphia Union – With the form that the Earthquakes have shown of late we expect them to control the game and dominate throughout. The Earthquakes have been solid at the back, keeping four clean sheets on the bounce against some of the top sides in the league and they shouldn’t face too many problems here.


MLS Preview and Prediction: Real Salt Lake vs New York City FC

Competition: Major League Soccer – Real Salt Lake vs. New York City FC

Venue: Rio Tinto Stadium – Saturday, May 23 – 22:00 ET (03:00 BST)

Match Odds: Real Salt Lake 19/20 – Draw 23/10 – New York City 3/1

Match Preview

Real Salt Lake welcome former manager Jason Kreis back to Rio Tinto stadium this weekend with his New York City FC side.

Salt Lake are in desperate need of a win after an embarrassing 4-1 loss to Montreal Impact last weekend and come into the game with only one win in seven.

Another key aspect of RSL’s poor form in their lack of goals recently, managing just four in their last seven games in MLS. Salt Lake do have reason for optimism however, as star striker Joao Plata has resumed full training.

Real Salt Lake’s 2015 MLS record: P11 – W3 – D5 – L3

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New York City are arguably the worst team in MLS at the moment. They have failed to register a win in their last nine outings and three red cards in their last four MLS matches suggests that they are having a disciplinary crisis.

New York City’s 2015 MLS record: P11 – W1 – D4 – L6

Jason Kreis’ men are lacking motivation and need a win to keep their season afloat, and at the moment, they seem like a club that are waiting for Frank Lampard to save them.

Team News

Real Salt Lake’s Chris Schuler is out. Javier Morales, Sebastien Jaime and Boyd Okwuonu are also doubts. Joao Plata is back in full training following injury, so could start. Jordan Allen is away on international duty.

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New York City are without George John, Tony Taylor and Josh Williams, while Javier Calle and Kwame Watson-Siriboe are doubtful. Ned Grabavoy is a slight doubt but could be fit to play. Patrick Mullins is expected to start ahead of Khiry Shelton up top.

Key Points

Real Salt Lake’s last five: L/D/D/W/L

New York City’s last five: L/L/L/L/D

Key Stat: There has been a red card in seven of New York City’s 11 matches this season.

Key Player: Josh Saunders – The NYC goalkeeper returns to Rio Tinto stadium at the weekend after a brief spell there in 2013. He will need to be at his early season best to keep New York City in this game.

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Score Prediction

Real Salt Lake 2-0 New York City – New York City have failed to win in nine and it’s tough to see them changing that away from home.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Houston Dynamo vs Portland Timbers

Competition: Major League Soccer – Houston Dynamo vs. Portland Timbers

Venue: BBVA Compass Stadium – Saturday, May 16th – 20:30 ET (01:30 BST – Sunday, May 17th) 

Match Odds: Houston Dynamo 6/4 – Draw 9/4 – Portland Timbers 9/5

Match Preview

Houston Dynamo play host to the Portland Timbers on Saturday night as they look to build on an impressive 2-1 win away at Toronto last weekend.

The Dynamo have looked like a team that is struggling to adapt to the philosophies of a new manager as Owen Coyle has persisted with a 4-4-2 system.

However, the victory at BMO field was more than impressive as defensively, the Dynamo were superb, while offensively, Giles Barnes was wreaking havoc when they had the chance to counter.

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Their home form has been somewhat poor however, losing their last two and conceding ten in total at home, compared to just four away.

Houston Dynamo’s 2015 MLS record: P11 – W3 – D4 – L4

Portland have yet to set MLS alight this season and some may argue they are underperforming because on paper they have one of the strongest squads in the league.

Much of their form is down to the limited attacking options head coach Caleb Porter has available. Diego Valeri has only just returned after an ACL injury and Fanendo Adi hasn’t scored a goal in his last six matches.

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With the Timbers yet to register back-to-back wins, they will be hoping that Saturday night will see that trend change.

Portland Timbers’ 2015 MLS record: P10 – W3 – D4 – L3

The last time these two sides met was in April 2014 when it ended in a 1-1 draw with Will Bruin and Gaston Fernandez on the scoresheet.

Team News

Houston Dynamo’s Nathan Sturgis is out, while Brad Davis is a slight doubt and will fight to be fit enough to start. Giles Barnes and Will Bruin should continue their strike partnership as Owen Coyle continues to play the 4-4-2 system.

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Portland Timbers’ Will Johnson, Ben Zemanski and Michael Nanchoff are all out. Gaston Fernandez is also a doubt, while Diego Valeri is expected to start in midfield.

Key Points

Houston Dynamo’s last five: D/D/L/L/W

Portland Timbers’ last five: L/W/L/D/W

Key Stat: Portland Timbers are yet to win away at Houston Dynamo in three attempts.

Key Player: Diego Valeri – Arguably one of the best players in MLS is back and expect him to be a major threat that the Dynamo will find difficult to contain.

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Score Prediction

Houston Dynamo 0-2 Portland Timbers – The Timbers to win comfortably and record their first ever victory away to the Dynamo.

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.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Vancouver Whitecaps vs Philadelphia Union

Competition: Major League Soccer – Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Philadelphia Union

Venue: BC Place – Saturday, May 9th – 19:00 ET (00:00 BST)

Match Odds: Vancouver 7/10 – Draw 11/4 – Philadelphia 15/4

Match Preview

Vancouver Whitecaps host the Philadelphia Union on Saturday night in what looks like it could be a routine win for the Canadian side as they have started the season the better of the two.

The Whitecaps currently lie second in the Western Conference and had they not endured a recent drop in form, they would be top of the Supporters’ Shield standings.

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Much of their early season charge has been down to the form of star striker Octavio Rivero but his run has dried up. They will need him on top form to pick up three points here.

Vancouver Whitecaps’ 2015 MLS record: P10 – W5 – D2 – L3

Philadelphia have had a dreadful start to 2015 and it just doesn’t seem to be working for Jim Curtin’s men.

Having lost their last three, and with only one win all season, they need a drastic improvement if they want to challenge for a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

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It will be a tough ask for them to win here as they have the worst defensive record in MLS, having conceded 18 so far.

Philadelphia Union’s 2015 MLS record: P10 – W1 – D3 – L6

Team News

Vancouver will be without Andre Lewis and Marco Bustos who are both out. Diego Rodriguez and Steve Beitashour are both doubts but the latter is expected to start at right-back.

Philadelphia are without Andre Birch, John McCarthy, Michael Lahoud and Antoine Hoppenot for the trip to Canada. Eric Bird, Vincent Nogueira and Steven Vitoria are all doubts as well.

Key Points

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

Philadelphia Union’s last five: W/D/L/L/L

Key Stat: There has only been one away win in this fixture and that came in July 2013 when Philadelphia won 1-0 in Vancouver.

Key Player: Octavio Rivero – Designated Player Rivero has made a sensational start to life in MLS and could prove the difference once again as he looks to find his goalscoring form once again.

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Score Prediction

Vancouver Whitecaps 2-0 Philadelphia Union – The Whitecaps to ease to victory against a Union side struggling for form and results. Vancouver haven’t been great in recent weeks but should be far too strong for their opponents this week.

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: Sporting Kansas City vs Chicago Fire

Competition: Major League Soccer – Sporting Kansas City vs Chicago Fire

Venue: Sporting Park – Sunday, May 3rd – 17:00 ET (22:00 BST – Live on Sky Sports)

Match Odds: Sporting KC 3/4 – Draw 13/5 – Chicago 18/5

Match Preview

The live Sunday night game on Sky Sports is at Sporting Park this week as Sporting Kansas City host the Chicago Fire in what could be a testing affair for both sides.

Sporting KC have had a stop-start campaign so far and losing star centre-back Ike Opara would hurt any defence, and that was seen as they shipped four goals in last weekend’s crazy 4-4 draw with the Houston Dynamo.

A shadow of the side that won the MLS Cup in 2013, Sporting Kansas City will need to dramatically improve if they are to make the playoffs and a surge towards MLS Cup again this season in a highly competitive Western Conference.

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One thing that is certain is that Dom Dwyer needs to start replicating his goalscoring form from the previous season pretty soon as he only has two so far.

Sporting KC’s 2015 MLS record: P8 – W2 – D4 – L2

Chicago had the worst start to the season of any MLS side but are now the most in-form team, with three wins on the bounce. What a turnaround!

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They are the team to beat at the moment and they will be confident of getting a result from Sporting Park this week as the hosts haven’t won in three now.

Chicago Fire’s 2015 MLS record: P6 – W3 – D0 – L3

The performances of star men Shaun Maloney and Harry Shipp have guided the Fire into a playoff spot at this early stage and now Frank Yallop’s team must maintain their position in the Eastern Conference’s top six for as long as possible.

Team News

Sporting Kansas City: Ike Opara has been ruled out for the season so Kevin Ellis will continue to partner Matt Besler in defence. Chance Myers is a doubt, though Graham Zusi is back so could start from the left.

Chicago Fire: Mike Magee and Patrick Nyarko both remain out. David Accam could play as part of a three man attack involving Shaun Maloney and Quincy Amarikwa.

Key Points

Sporting KC’s last five in MLS: W/W/D/L/D

Chicago’s last five in MLS: L/L/W/W/W

Key Stat: Chicago haven’t won away at SKC since June 2012 in the MLS regular season.

Key Player: Benny Feilhaber – The man of the moment at Sporting KC as he has racked up five assists already and is providing a core to their midfield that they can build on. Huge asset to Kansas City and will be important in this one too.

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Score Prediction

Sporting Kansas City 1-1 Chicago Fire – Although form suggests a Fire win, it’s tough to see SKC losing at home here. Score draw the most likely outcome in what should be an intriguing clash.

MLS Preview and Prediction: LA Galaxy vs Colorado Rapids

Competition: Major League Soccer – LA Galaxy vs. Colorado Rapids

Venue: StubHub Center – Saturday, May 2nd – 22:00 ET (03:30 BST)

Match Odds: LA 1/2 – Draw 16/5 – Colorado 11/2

Match Preview

The late night game on Saturday night sees the LA Galaxy host the Colorado Rapids in a Western Conference clash that isn’t necessarily the formality the odds suggest.

LA are undefeated in their last 23 home matches in MLS. Their frightening form has seen StubHub Center become a fortress and Colorado will need to do a lot to break that streak.

With 10 points from a possible 12 at home this season, the Galaxy are rightly the favourites, and supporters will be expecting a win.

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And with the insurgence of youngster Bradford Jamieson IV playing upfront they still have a strikeforce that can hurt the Rapids, even without the injured Robbie Keane.

LA Galaxy’s 2015 MLS record: P8 – W3 – D3 – L2

Colorado had a poor start to 2015 after opening with three 0-0 draws. They have, however managed to break their winless run recently, having thumped FC Dallas 4-0 to earn their first win of the season last month and have only lost one of their last four now.

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Better away from home, the Rapids are not a team to bet against when on the road. Especially because they have only conceded once away all season, in the 1-1 draw with the New York Red Bulls on Wednesday night.

Colorado Rapids’ 2015 MLS record: P8 – W1 – D5 – L2

All of this just hides the fact that this is a side that will struggle to have success if they fail pick up points more often. Colorado are sitting bottom of the Western Conference and need to start climbing the table soon so this could be seen as a must win for the Rapids.

Team News

LA Galaxy: Brian Perk is out. Robbie Keane and Jose Villarreal are major doubts and Leonardo is a doubt but is expected to play. Bradford Jamieson IV could make another start in the absence of Keane, alongside Alan Gordon who is set to continue up front with Gyasi Zardes on the wing.

Colorado Rapids: Marcelo Sarvas is out so Sam Cronin could fill in. Marc Burch is out and Drew Moor is a doubt. Gabriel Torres is expected to lead the attack in place of Dominique Badji.

Key Points

LA Galaxy’s last five in MLS: L/L/W/W/D

Colorado Rapids’ last five in MLS: L/W/L/D/D

Key Stat: LA Galaxy scored ten goals in three matches against the Rapids last season, including a 6-0 win at StubHub Center in their most recent meeting.

Key Player: Gyasi Zardes – In the absence of Robbie Keane, Zardes may be needed to step up and deliver the goals and chances to help Galaxy win this one.

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Score Prediction

LA Galaxy 2-0 Colorado Rapids – The Galaxy to win their third straight home game to keep that unbeaten run at StubHub Center going. The Rapids have been good on the road but could be fatigued by their game in New York on Wednesday night.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Seattle Sounders vs Portland Timbers

Competition: Major League Soccer – Seattle Sounders vs. Portland Timbers

Venue: CenturyLink Field – Sunday April 26th – 21:30 ET (02:30 BST)

Match Odds: Seattle 17/20 – Draw 12/5 – Portland 16/5

Match Preview

Seattle Sounders host the Portland Timbers on Sunday night in the first of their three Cascadia Cup matches in 2015.

Seattle will feel buoyed knowing that Clint Dempsey is ready and available after having to settle for time on the sidelines so far with a hamstring injury.

With the Sounders winning on the road last time out, it is important that they return to home comforts with a win, especially because this rivalry means a lot to the fans.

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Both sides are coming into the game off wins last weekend, and will both arrive looking to take all three points from this season’s second Cascadia Cup game, after the Timbers lost 2-1 to Vancouver earlier this season.

Seattle’s 2015 MLS record: P6 – W3 – D1 – L2

Portland come into this one as the underdogs and have endured a slow start to season after having to wait four games for their first win.

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They earned their first away win of the campaign at New York City FC last weekend, and so they will want to continue that form on the road at fierce rivals Seattle this week.

Portland’s 2015 MLS record: P7 – W2 – D3 – L2

Having lost the first of their Cascadia Cup games against the Vancouver Whitecaps, this is a huge game for the Timbers and one the fans will feel they cannot afford to lose.

Team News

For Seattle, Damian Lowe is the only injury concern for this clash as he is doubtful with an ankle injury. Clint Dempsey looks set to partner Obafemi Martins up front after overcoming his hamstring troubles.

Portland will be without Diego Valeri, Will Johnson and Ben Zemanski as all three all remain out. Rodney Wallace is a doubt for the game and doesn’t look like he will play any part.

Key Points

Seattle Sounders’ last five in MLS: L/D/W/L/W

Portland Timbers’ last five in MLS: D/L/W/L/W

Key Stat: Portland Timbers have never won away at Seattle in an MLS regular season game.

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Key Player: Obafemi Martins – The pace the front man possesses will cause problems for any defense, and his partnership with Clint Dempsey could prove the difference once again in this one.

Score Prediction

Seattle Sounders 2-1 Portland Timbers – Seattle to use their home advantage to effect with a narrow win against their rivals in what should be an entertaining game.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Chicago Fire vs New York City FC

Competition: Major League Soccer – Chicago Fire vs. New York City FC

Venue: Toyota Park – Friday April 24th – 20:00 ET (01:00 BST)

Match Odds: Chicago 5/4 – Draw 23/10 – New York City 21/10

Match Preview

Chicago Fire will look to make it three on the bounce when they host expansion franchise New York City FC on Friday night, with both sides only separated by a point in the Eastern Conference.

After starting the season with three successive losses, Frank Yallop’s men have won two in succession and look more comfortable going forward.

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Much of the improved form is down to the quality injection of attacking DP’s David Accam and Shaun Maloney as they look to be a real threat in the final third.

The Fire haven’t played an MLS game for 20 days so will be fully rested for this one, but will hope that the lack of game time hasn’t halted progression.

Chicago Fire’s 2015 MLS record: P5 – W2 – D0 – L3

New York City come into this one as the side out of form, having only managed one win all season. It is important for the expansion side to start picking up points soon, as they search for a playoff berth in their debut season.

The change of strategy by Jason Kreis for the Portland game was what was needed, as they have looked flat this season whilst playing the 4-4-2 system.

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The newly tested 4-3-3 system will allow rookie, Khiry Shelton, to use his pace as he looks set to continue on the right side of a front three.

New York City’s 2015 MLS record: P7 – W1 – D3 – L3

Much of how the team plays however relies on the fitness of star men, Mix Diskerud and David Villa, who once again remain doubts. If they both play, NYCFC tends to do well. If they don’t, it could be a long night in Chicago.

Team News

Chicago Fire will be without Mike Magee (hip) and Patrick Nyarko (knee) as both remain out injured, while Michael Stephens is a doubt with an ankle injury. Shaun Maloney is expected to play just off front man Quincy Amarikwa with David Accam and Harry Shipp on the flanks.

New York City will be without George John (knee), Tony Taylor (knee) and Jason Hernandez (calf) as all three have been ruled out, with Taylor out for the season. David Villa, Mix Diskerud, Shay Facey and Josh Williams are all doubts as Jason Kreis is struggling with a growing list of absentees. With all the injuries it looks likely that they will keep the 4-3-3 formation from the Portland loss, with Khiry Shelton playing wide and Patrick Mullins filling in as the central striker.

Key Points

Chicago Fire’s last five in MLS: L/L/L/W/W

New York City’s last five in MLS: D/L/L/D/L

Key Stat: New York City have only scored more than once on one occasion this season; a home win against the New England Revolution in what is their only victory so far.

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Key Player: Harry Shipp – With one goal and three assists so far this season, Shipp has been instrumental and we expect more of the same in front of a home crowd on Friday night.

Score Prediction

Chicago Fire 2-1 New York City FC – New York City may not have enough once again, especially without star men, and Chicago should edge this one in front of their own fans.