MLS Preview and Prediction: Portland Timbers vs Houston Dynamo

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

Venue: Providence Park – Friday, August 21 – 23:00 ET (Saturday, August 22 – 04:30 BST)

Match Odds: Portland Timbers 4/6 – Draw 11/4 – Houston Dynamo 4/1

Match Preview

Portland Timbers take on Western Conference opponents Houston Dynamo on Friday night as they look to continue to keep pace in the top four.

Caleb Porter‘s side come into this one off the back of two consecutive wins, their last, a 1-0 away victory over Real Salt Lake.

The Timbers are sitting fourth in the Western Conference, four points behind leaders LA Galaxy, but Porter’s side have a game in hand and know they cannot afford to drop unnecessary points.

Timbers look to be back on track with their last two wins coming off the back of a four game winless run.

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Houston Dynamo have been in inconsistent form and as a result sit outside the playoff places in eighth.

Owen Coyle‘s side come into the game after last weekends 2-0 defeat away at New England Revolution.

They sit four points outside the playoff places, so have more than a reasonable chance of pushing themselves up the table, but they need to find a run of form.

Dynamo have four wins in their last ten Regular Season games including that impressive 3-0 victory over LA Galaxy, if they can perform like they did in that one, they have a great chance here.

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Team News

Portland have just the one injury concern coming into this one with Ben Zemanski still out. Both Liam Ridgewell and Alvas Powell are one caution away from suspension, so will need to be cautious not to pick up any silly bookings.

Houston Dynamo could be without three players. Jermaine Taylor looks set to miss out while there are doubts about Ricardo Clark and Rob Lovejoy. Kofi Sarkodie, Raul Rodriguez and Sheanon Williams are all one booking away from suspension.

Key Points

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

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

Key Stat: Fortress – Portland Timbers have won six of their last seven home matches in MLS and kept six clean sheets in their last eight regular season ties at Providence Park.

Key Player: Fanendo Adi – The Timbers top scorer has netted ten times this season, with two in his last three games and will be looking to cause problems for Dynamo.

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Score Prediction

Portland Timbers 2-1 Houston Dynamo – Portland to continue their home form in a cagey affair.


MLS Preview and Prediction: Sporting Kansas City vs Vancouver Whitecaps

Competition: Major League Soccer – Sporting Kansas City vs. Vancouver Whitecaps

Venue: Sporting Park – Saturday, August 15 – 21:00 ET (02:00 BST)

Match Odds: Sporting Kansas City 6/5 – Draw 9/4 – Vancouver Whitecaps 23/10

Match Preview

Sporting Park plays host to the visit of Vancouver Whitecaps on Saturday night as Sporting Kansas City look to extend their home unbeaten streak to 12 in this key Western Conference clash.

With four wins in their last six, it would seem that SKC have been in great form, yet only one of those wins came in their last three.

Much of their solid form this season has come down to the fact they have only lost four times thus far – the least number of defeats in MLS.

Sporting Kansas City’s record in MLS: P21 W10 D7 L4

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They currently sit in fourth place in the West but are just five points behind Saturday’s opponents with three games in hand.

Vancouver started the season with flurry and were the surprise package out of the blocks and they now look to have regained their early season form after a mid season blip.

Vancouver Whitecaps’ record in MLS: P24 W13 D3 L8

Seattle Sounders vs Vancouver Whitecaps Pa-Modou Kah

With three wins on the bounce and an impressive 4-0 win over Real Salt Lake last weekend, Vancouver could be a threat to SKC’s unbeaten streak on Saturday night and will look to stay at the top of the Western with a win in this one.

Team News

Sporting Kansas City will be without Ike Opara, Jalil Anibaba and Roger Espinoza through injury. Seth Sinovic is a doubt with a concussion.

Vancouver Whitecaps are without Ben McKendry with a knee injury and Mauro Rosales is a doubt with an adductor strain.

Key Points

Sporting Kansas City’s last five: W/W/L/D/W

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

Key Stat: Sporting Kansas City are undefeated in their last 11 home matches in MLS.

Key Player: Benny Feilhaber – US international Feilhaber has been the cornerstone of the SKC team this season, and with eight goals and nine assists he has been possibly the most influential player in the league. Expect a huge contribution from the midfielder once again here.

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Score Prediction

Sporting Kansas City 2-1 Vancouver Whitecaps – Both have been exceptional sides this season and we’re expecting both of them to ease into the playoffs. But we struggle to see Vancouver defeating SKC at home. Sporting should just edge this but there could be goals.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Seattle Sounders vs Orlando City

Competition: Major League Soccer – Seattle Sounders vs. Orlando City

Venue: CenturyLink Field – Sunday, August 16 – 17:00 ET (22:00 BST – Live on Sky Sports)

Match Odds: Seattle Sounders 19/20 – Draw 5/2 – Orlando City 14/5

Match Preview

Seattle Sounders host Orlando City on Sunday night in the hope they can salvage their season before it crashes around them.

Seattle started the season in a positive manner and were looking like the side that won the Supporters’ Shield last season. However, recent form has left them lying just one point above Houston and clinging onto the last Western Conference playoff spot.

Seattle Sounders Training

Losing eight of their last nine matches in MLS, Seattle are in deep trouble and the return of star strikers Obafemi Martins and Clint Dempsey would be a boost going into the latter stages of the regular season.

Seattle Sounders’ record in MLS: P24 – W10 – D2 – L12

Orlando City aren’t doing much better in comparison, having only registered one win in their last six in MLS.

The form of Kaka has dipped and injuries to stars like Brek Shea and Kevin Molino are not helping their cause as we enter the final stretch of the season.

Orlando City’s record in MLS: P24 – W7 – D7 – L10

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However, a recent surge of goals from MLS Superdraft pick Cyle Larin has made them look threatening and they should provide Seattle with a stern test come Sunday evening in their first ever meeting.

Team News

Seattle Sounders are without Andres Correa, Andy Craven and Damion Lowe through injury. Osvaldo Alonso is questionable and Chad Barrett, Obafemi Martins, Leonardo Gonzalez and Clint Dempsey are all doubts. Marco Pappa is out under MLS SABH Program rules following DUI/Speeding incident. New signings Roman Torres, Andreas Ivanschitz and Nelson Valdez will be in contention to make their debuts.

Seattle Sounders Training Roman Torres

Orlando City are missing as many as six, with Kevin Molino, Conor Donovan, Tony Cascio, Brek Shea, Harrison Heath and Rafael Ramos all out through injury. Cyle Larin will continue to spearhead the attack with Kaka in behind.

Key Points

Seattle Sounders’ last five: L/L/L/L/L

Orlando City’s last five: L/L/W/L/D

Key Stat: Seattle have won only once in their last nine matches in MLS.

Key Player: Cyle Larin – Canadian international Larin has been in fine form since returning from the Gold Cup and with six goals in as many games, he will be a major threat on Sunday night.

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Score Prediction

Seattle Sounders 0-1 Orlando City – Seattle have been dreadful recently without stars Clint Dempsey and Obafemi Martins and will struggle to keep out a very exciting Orlando side in what could be a tight game.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Columbus Crew vs Chicago Fire

Competition: Major League Soccer – Columbus Crew vs. Chicago Fire

Venue: MAPFRE Stadium – Sunday, July 19 – 17:00 ET (22:00 BST – Live on Sky Sports)

Match Odds: Columbus 19/20 – Draw 5/2 – Chicago 11/4

Match Preview

Columbus Crew take on Chicago Fire in the second meeting between the Eastern Conference sides in five days after Columbus beat Chicago 1-0 on Wednesday night.

Columbus will be delighted with the road win and return home looking to take three more points from their rivals as they look to cement a playoff spot with 14 games remaining.

The Crew moved up to second in the Eastern on Wednesday as Kei Kamara’s powerful header saw them win on the road for the first time this season – something which will have delighted Gregg Berhalter and the club.

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The Crew have not lost at home in their last three and will expect to see off a Chicago side who still sit bottom of both their conference and the Supporters’ Shield standings after 19 weeks.

Frank Yallop’s men have underperformed this year and haven’t really looked like challenging for a playoff spot. There’s still all to play for as they are only six points off sixth place, but they must start winning matches regularly to have a chance of postseason football.

A 1-0 win at home to Seattle last weekend should have helped them get a result against the Crew in midweek, and the fact that it didn’t will go down as a missed opportunity.

They have not won away this season and have netted just seven goals in eight road games, so the chances of victory at MAPFRE stadium on Sunday night look slim.

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They did pick up a 2-2 draw in the earlier game in Columbus after coming from 2-0 down and they need to show similar spirit here.

Team News

Columbus Crew will likely be without Hector Jimenez, who is the only injury concern for the side, while Kevan George remains away on international duty. Berhalter will probably look to keep his team selection similar to the one that beat Chicago on Wednesday.

Frank Yallop has more concerns to deal with. The Fire will be without Shaun Maloney and Guly Do Prado through injury, while Jeff Larentowicz and David Accam are doubts. Joevin Jones remains absent at the Gold Cup.

Key Points

Columbus Crew’s last five: W/D/W/L/W

Chicago Fire’s last five: L/L/D/W/L

Key Stat: Chicago Fire have not won in any of their last 16 away games in MLS.

Key Player: Kei Kamara – Impossible to overlook the powerful striker. He leads MLS in goals with 13 and has netted all three of the Crew’s goals in the two previous games with Chicago this season.

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Score Prediction 

Columbus Crew 2-1 Chicago Fire – Expect the Fire to put up more of a fight than they did in midweek but the end result to be the same. Columbus look too strong for their opponents and should make it two wins on the bounce in front of their own fans.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Toronto FC vs Philadelphia Union

Competition: Major League Soccer – Toronto FC vs. Philadelphia Union 

Venue: BMO Field – Saturday, July 18 – 16:00 ET (21:00 BST)

Match Odds: Toronto FC 21/20 – Draw 5/2 – Philadelphia Union 12/5

Match Preview

Toronto FC play hosts to Philadelphia Union on Saturday night in game where both sides will be desperate for three points, as both are chasing a playoff berth in the Eastern Conference.

Toronto come into the tie the worse off of the two in terms of form as they have managed only one win in their last five outings.

However, with Sebastian Giovinco in unstoppable form, they remain a constant threat to most defences. Plus the return of Jozy Altidore will only strengthen Greg Vanney’s options.

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Toronto FC’s 2015 record in MLS: P17 – W7 – D3 – L7

Philadelphia come into the clash unbeaten in their last three in MLS, including two impressive wins over Seattle and Portland.

They have struggled away from home though, having not registered a road win since May 24 – a run of two straight losses have followed, including a heavy 5-1 defeat to LA Galaxy in their last away game in MLS.

Philadelphia Union’s 2015 record in MLS: P20 – W6 – D4 – L10

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This will be the second of three meetings between the two this season. Toronto sealed a 1-0 win in Philadelphia back in early May thanks to a Giovinco free-kick and the Reds will therefore fancy their chances again here.

Team News

Toronto FC will be without Clement Simonin through injury. Ashton Morgan, Jonathan Osorio and Michael Bradley are all away on international duty. Jozy Altidore could feature after being cut from the USMNT earlier this week.

Philadelphia Union may be missing Michael Lahoud, Fernando Aristeguieta, Eric Bird and Steven Vitoria as they remain doubts. Maurice Edu is unavailable due to suspension in what could be a pivotal absence.

Key Points

Toronto FC’s last five: L/W/D/L/D

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

Key Stat: Philadelphia have won only one of their last eleven away matches in MLS.

Key Player: Sebastian Giovinco – The Italian is in sensational form as of late and we struggle to see him having anything but a huge impact on the result here. Expect him to build on last week’s hat-trick with at least another goal here.

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Score Prediction

Toronto FC 2-0 Philadelphia Union – We expect Toronto to be too strong for the visiting Union here. Expect them to win comfortably and expect a better defensive display than in that 4-4 draw at New York City last weekend.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Montreal Impact vs Orlando City

Competition: Major League Soccer – Montreal Impact vs. Orlando City 

Venue: Stade Saputo – Saturday, June 20 – 20:00 ET (01:00 BST)

Match Odds: Montreal Impact 7/5 – Draw 12/5 – Orlando City 9/5

Match Preview

Montreal Impact welcome fellow Eastern Conference franchise Orlando City to Stade Saputo on Saturday night in a game both sides will be desperate to win.

Montreal come into this one off the back of a 3-1 loss to New York City FC last time out but do boast four wins from their last six.

And after winning their last three at home, the Impact will feel confident about extending that run to four on Saturday as they face Orlando at home for the second time this term.

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Montreal Impact’s 2015 MLS record: P11 – W4 – D2 – L5

Orlando City have been in tremendous form lately and are unbeaten in their last six in all competitions after overcoming Charleston Battery in midweek, with victory in the US Open Cup.

Currently lying third in the Eastern Conference, Orlando may feel they have overachieved so far but will want to continue their current form as a playoff spot looks a real likelihood.

Orlando City’s 2015 MLS record: P15 – W5 – D5 – L5

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These two met in Montreal back in March, with the game ending 2-2 as Orlando came from two goals down to earn a point, with all four goals coming in the first-half.

This is very much a game that could go either way, and is set up to thrill.

Team News

Montreal Impact are without Adrian Lopez, Justin Mapp, Cameron Porter, Kenny Cooper, Dominic Oduro, Hassoun Camara, Eric Miller and Dilly Duka through injury.

Orlando City are without Kevin Molino, Martin Paterson and Tony Cascio through injury. Tally Hall is expected to start in goal and Cyle Larin could start upfront after shining on international duty with Canada.

Key Points

Montreal Impact’s last five: W/L/W/W/L

Orlando City’s last five: W/D/D/W/W

Key Stat: Montreal Impact have won their last three home matches in MLS.

Key Player: Kaka – Brazilian superstar Kaka has been little short of exceptional since joining MLS and has become one of the greatest players in the league very quickly. He will provide class that is unparalleled once more on Saturday.

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Score Prediction

Montreal Impact 1-1 Orlando City – Both sides will see this as a match where they can pick up points and that should see them equal each other out for the second time this season.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Toronto FC vs New York City FC

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

Venue: BMO Field – Saturday, June 20 – 19:00 ET (00:00 BST)

Match Odds: Toronto FC 7/10 – Draw 11/4 – New York City FC 15/4

Match Preview

Toronto FC host Eastern Conference rivals New York City FC on Saturday night, pitting two in-form sides against each other in what should be an intriguing clash.

Toronto seem to be getting the best out of Sebastian Giovinco after the Italian’s brace against DC United helped the side to an impressive 2-1 win last time out.

Some may still argue that they should be competing for the Supporters’ Shield considering the money they’ve spent, but they seem to be hitting form and look a tough side to beat at present.

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Toronto FC’s 2015 MLS record: P12 – W6 – D1 – L5

New York City FC come into this one off the back of a penalty loss in midweek. NYCFC fell to the New York Cosmos in the US Open Cup and need to try and bounce back quickly here.

After two wins on the bounce in MLS, it came as a bit of a surprise for the new franchise to fall short to their New York rivals. But they will want to make it three wins in a row in MLS when they travel to Canada on Saturday evening.

NYCFC’s 2015 MLS record: P15 – W3 – D5 – L7

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This is the first ever meeting between the two sides but with both coming into the game in their best form of the season, it should be an entertaining one.

Team News 

Toronto FC are without Clement Simonin and Stephen Caldwell due to injury, while Daniel Lovitz and Robbie Findley are doubts. Jozy Altidore could partner Sebastian Giovinco upfront.

New York City FC have as many as six missing through injury. Khiry Shelton, Josh Williams, Tony Taylor, George John, Connor Brandt and Javier Calle are all out. David Villa will continue in attack.

Key Points

Toronto FC’s last five: L/D/W/W/W

New York City FC’s last five: D/L/D/W/W

Key Stat: Both sides are unbeaten in their last three MLS matches.

Key Player: Sebastian Giovinco – The Italian playmaker has been sensational recently and is very much the main man in the Toronto attack. He has an incredible seven goals and six assists already and looks to be unstoppable at present.

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Score Prediction

Toronto FC 2-0 New York City FC – Toronto are starting to look the team everyone expected to see after their expensive spending spree this winter and you can expect them to comfortably beat NYCFC on Saturday in front of their own fans.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Colorado Rapids vs FC Dallas

Competition: Major League Soccer – Colorado Rapids vs. FC Dallas

Venue: Dick’s Sporting Goods Park – Friday, June 19 – 21:00 ET (02:00 BST)

Match Odds: Colorado 21/20 – Draw 12/5 – Dallas 5/2

Match Preview

Colorado Rapids face FC Dallas in the third and final regular season meeting between the Western Conference rivals on Friday night to kickstart Week 16’s action.

Teams across MLS will be boosted by the return of several stars from the recent international break, though midweek US Open Cup commitments will test the 17 US-based sides, including Colorado and Dallas.

Both sides come into this game in terrible form in the league and it speaks volumes that Colorado boasts the better form even without a win in their last three.

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The Rapids have only won once in their last eight in MLS, though Tuesday’s 4-1 win against the Colorado Springs Switchbacks in the Open Cup will have relieved some nerves ahead of this one.

Dallas also won 4-1 on Tuesday night, beating Oklahoma City Energy FC in the same competition, but that game saw them score more goals in 90 minutes than they have in their last six MLS matches combined.

The Texan side have not found the net in their last three league games and are without a win in five now, though the have played four consecutive road games in a tricky spell, with Friday’s match the last of a five-game away streak.

They travel to Colorado having not beaten the Rapids in two previous attempts this term, losing 4-0 at home in a shocking defeat before playing out a 1-1 draw at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park two weeks later.

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Both Colorado and Dallas need to find points quickly. The Rapids are still bottom of the Western Conference and eight points off FCD, who occupy the final playoff berth as we approach the midpoint of the season.

Team News

Rapids head coach Paulo Mastroeni could still be without Vincente Sanchez, while Axel Sjoberg will definitely sit this one out. Dillon Serna netted twice midweek and will hope to build on that display here. Kevin Doyle has yet to score for Colorado since completing his move last month and will hope to get off the mark in front of the home crowd in this one.

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FC Dallas boss Oscar Pareja will be boosted by the returns of Atiba Harris, Moises Hernandez, Tesho Akindele and Kellyn Acosta from international duty. Dallas have no suspensions or injuries to worry about and look in good shape as far as the squad is concerned here.

Key Points

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

FC Dallas’ last five in MLS: D/L/L/D/L

Key Stat: There have been 21 yellow cards and two reds in the last six meetings between these two, with a red card brandished in the last two matches at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.

Key Player: Mauro Diaz – The Dallas playmaker has the quality to unlock the tight Rapids defence and scored in the last meeting between the two in Colorado. Expect him to be lively.

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Score Prediction

Colorado Rapids 1-1 FC Dallas – Nothing to split the two sides heading into this one. With neither side in good form and both struggling for goals in MLS, this could be another low-scoring draw.

MLS Preview and Prediction: New England Revolution vs LA Galaxy

Competition: Major League Soccer – New England Revolution vs. LA Galaxy

Venue: Gillette Stadium – Sunday, May 31 – 19:00 ET (00:00 BST – Monday, June 1)

Match Odds: New England Revolution 5/4 – Draw 23/10 – LA Galaxy 11/5

Match Preview

New England Revolution welcome LA Galaxy to Gillette Stadium for a repeat of the 2014 MLS Cup final and the only fixture between these two sides in the 2015 MLS regular season.

The Revs come into this crucial encounter seeking revenge for the 2014 MLS Cup final defeat, but they’re on a run of four games without a win (D3, L1), although they’ve only lost once in their last 11.

Jay Heaps’ side are currently second in the Eastern Conference with 20 points from their opening 13 games and are also unbeaten in seven matches at home so far this season (W3, D4).

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LA Galaxy have put an end to a five-game winless streak by winning two on the bounce, beating both Houston Dynamo and Real Salt Lake 1-0 at StubHub Center.

Bruce Arena will be concerned with the Galaxy’s away form as they haven’t won any of their seven games on the road this season (D3, L4) – in-fact, LA haven’t won any of their last 13 away games in MLS.

The Galaxy are currently fourth in the Western Conference with 20 points from their first 14 games and a win here could potentially take them level with conference leaders Seattle.

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The last time these two met was of course the MLS Cup final in December 2014 that saw LA Galaxy win 2-1 after extra-time. The game was tied at 1-1 after 90 minutes before a Robbie Keane strike made the difference.

The most recent regular season meeting was a comprehensive 5-1 victory for LA Galaxy in July 2014 and the last fixture at Gillette Stadium saw the Revs thrash Galaxy 5-0 in June 2013, so this couldn’t be harder to predict.

Team News

New England Revolution will be without Darrius Barnes (knee) through injury, while key players Lee Nguyen and Chris Tierney will miss the game through suspension after they were both sent off against DC United last week.

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LA Galaxy defenders Todd Dunivant (knee), Robbie Rogers (achilles) and A.J. DeLaGarza (foot) could all miss out through injury, while goalkeeper Brian Perk is a long-term absentee with a broken ankle.

Key Points

New England Revolution’s last five: W/D/D/L/D

LA Galaxy’s last five: D/L/L/W/W

Key Stat: New England are undefeated in their last 17 home matches in MLS.

Key Player: Robbie Keane – The Galaxy have automatically looked more convincing since their skipper returned to action and he could play a crucial role in helping LA to secure a positive result.

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Score Prediction

New England Revolution 1-1 LA Galaxy – The Revs have drawn their last two home games 1-1, making it a likely scoreline against a Galaxy side that have won two on the bounce and have recovered well from the 4-0 loss in Orlando two weeks ago.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Orlando City vs Columbus Crew

Competition: Major League Soccer – Orlando City vs. Columbus Crew

Venue: Citrus Bowl – Saturday, May 30 – 19:30 ET (00:30 BST – Sunday, May 31)

Match Odds: Orlando City 5/4 – Draw 12/5 – Columbus Crew 21/10

Match Preview

Orlando City and Columbus Crew clash in MLS for the second time this season when they meet at Citrus Bowl on Saturday evening.

Head coach Adrian Heath can be very happy with Orlando’s last two results as they picked up a valuable point in a 1-1 draw away at San Jose Earthquakes last weekend, and thrashed LA Galaxy 4-0 at home the week before.

The win over the Galaxy was the Lions’ first ever victory at home and they’re now sixth in the Eastern Conference standings with 13 points from their opening 12 games.

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If Orlando avoid defeat in this game, it will also be the first time they have strung together a run of three games without defeat.

Columbus Crew are fourth in the Eastern Conference with 15 points and drew their last game at home to the Chicago Fire in disappointing fashion as they let a two-goal lead slip, conceding a devastating last-minute equaliser to tie the game.

The Crew have managed just one victory in their last four games (D1, L2) and also haven’t won a game away from home yet this season, so they’ll be looking to break that trend (D2, L3).

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Gregg Berhalter’s Columbus side eased to a 3-0 victory when these two sides met in the reverse fixture in April, thanks to goals from Federico Higuain, Justin Meram and Kei Kamara.

Team News

Orlando City will be without Pedro Ribeiro (hamstring) and Kevin Molino, while Lewis Neal (neck), Tony Cascio (back) and Aurelien Collin (hamstring) are all doubts. Brek Shea will miss the game through suspension after his red card against San Jose.

Columbus Crew midfielders Wil Trapp (concussion) and Ethan Finlay (toe) are both doubtful.

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Key Points

Orlando City’s last five: L/D/L/W/D

Columbus Crew’s last five: W/L/W/L/D

Key Stat: Columbus Crew have conceded at least two goals in their last four matches in MLS.

Key Player: Kaka – The Brazilian has been excellent in Orlando’s recent good performances and will be vital to his side once again.

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Score Prediction

Orlando City 2-2 Columbus Crew – Orlando are full of confidence after their last two games and there’s always goals when Columbus play, but they just can’t win away from home. A high scoring draw could be the order of the day.