MLS Opening Weekend: 30 interesting stats from Sunday’s ten games

The opening weekend of the 2016 Major League Soccer season is upon us, so here is a look at a few stats to be aware of ahead of what should be an excellent evening of MLS action.

Sunday 6th March

New York Red Bulls vs Toronto FC – (18:30 GMT)

  • New York Red Bulls are unbeaten against Toronto FC in their last eight home matches against the Canadian side.
  • Including the playoffs, New York Red Bulls have won 11 of their last 12 at Red Bull Arena.
  • On the other hand, Toronto FC haven’t won on the road in MLS since 4th July, a total of nine away fixtures.

For more information read our New York Red Bulls vs Toronto FC Match Preview.

New York Red Bulls vs. DC United

Orlando City vs Real Salt Lake – (19:00 GMT)

  • Orlando City finished the 2015 MLS Season on a six-game unbeaten streak, with four wins and two draws.
  • Real Salt Lake finished the 2015 MLS season on a three-game losing streak, managing just one goal in the process.
  • However, Real Salt Lake are unbeaten in six consecutive MLS opening games, with five wins and one draw.

For more information read our Orlando City vs Real Salt Lake Match Preview.

Chicago Fire vs New York City FC – (19:00 GMT) – Live on Sky Sports 1

  • Chicago Fire lost seven of their last eight matches in the 2015 season, winning the other.
  • New York City FC won only once in their last eight away games of last season, losing six of them.
  • Chicago haven’t won on the opening day for the last six seasons, as they’be endured four losses and two draws.

For more information read our Chicago Fire vs New York City FC Match Preview.

FC Dallas vs Philadelphia Union – (20:00 GMT)

  • Philadelphia have never beaten FC Dallas in Major League Soccer.
  • FC Dallas have won four season openers in MLS in a row.
  • FC Dallas won the most matches at home in MLS last season, with a total of 13 out of 17.

For more information read our FC Dallas vs Philadelphia Union Match Preview.

Photo: Denise McCooey

Photo: Denise McCooey

Houston Dynamo vs New England Revolution – (20:00 GMT)

  • Houston Dynamo have lost to the New England Revolution on three consecutive occasions – run that started in April 2014.
  • Houston Dynamo have lost just once in their last ten home matches in MLS, with seven wins and two draws.
  • New England Revolution conceded 35 times on the road last season – their worst away defensive record since 1998.

For more information read our Houston Dynamo vs New England Revolution Match Preview.

San Jose Earthquakes vs Colorado Rapids – (20:00 GMT)

  • San Jose Earthquakes are unbeaten in 12 consecutive matches against the Colorado Rapids, winning six and drawing six.
  • San Jose haven’t conceded at home against the Colorado Rapids since May 2013.
  • Colorado Rapids have lost four of their last five away matches in MLS, winning the other.

For more information read our San Jose Earthquakes vs Colorado Rapids Match Preview.

Portland Timbers vs Columbus Crew – (21:30 GMT) – Live on Sky Sports 1

  • Including the MLS Cup Final last year, Portland Timbers are unbeaten in their last three matches against Columbus Crew.
  • Including the postseason, Portland Timbers are unbeaten in their last nine consecutive MLS matches, winning six and drawing three.
  • Columbus Crew won five of their last six 2015 MLS regular season games.

For more information read our Portland Timbers vs Columbus Crew Match Preview.

Embed from Getty Images

Vancouver Whitecaps vs Montreal Impact – (22:30 GMT)

  • Vancouver had the joint best defence in Major League Soccer in 2015, conceding only 36 goals.
  • Montreal Impact won their final two matches away from home in the regular season last term but lost nine of the 15 previous road trips.
  • Octavio Rivero was the Whitecaps’ leading goalscorer with ten last season. He is only the fourth player in Whitecaps history to reach double-digits in a single season.

For more information read our Vancouver Whitecaps vs Montreal Impact Match Preview.

Monday 7th March (UK Time)

Seattle Sounders vs Sporting Kansas City – (00:00 GMT)

  • Seattle Sounders haven’t won against Sporting Kansas City in their last three attempts, drawing twice and losing once.
  • At home, Sounders are undefeated in all four MLS matches against Sporting Kansas City, winning twice and drawing twice.
  • Seattle are unbeaten in their last seven MLS outings. They’ve won six of those seven, drawing the other.

For more information read our Seattle Sounders vs Sporting Kansas City Match Preview.

Seattle Sounders vs FC Dallas Fans

LA Galaxy vs DC United – (03:00 GMT)

  • DC have only won once in their last eleven matches against LA Galaxy, drawing five and losing the other five.
  • LA are unbeaten in their last eight home matches against DC United, recording four wins and four draws.
  • DC United only managed to score nine away goals in the regular season in 2015 – a league low for the season.

For more information read our LA Galaxy vs DC United Match Preview.

What are you most looking forward to on the opening day of the 2016 MLS season?

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MLS Preview and Prediction: San Jose Earthquakes vs Colorado Rapids

Competition: Major League Soccer – San Jose Earthquakes vs. Colorado Rapids

Venue: Avaya Stadium – Sunday, March 6 – 15:00 ET (20:00 GMT) 

Match Odds: San Jose 19/20 – Draw 9/4 – Colorado 16/5

Match Preview

San Jose Earthquakes host Colorado Rapids in an intriguing 2016 MLS opener on Sunday, as two sides that struggled last term will look to get off to a flying start by immediately moving in front of the other.

San Jose came close to making the playoffs in 2015 but ultimately had to settle for a seventh-place finish in the West. They did finish ten points ahead of Colorado, who disappointingly ended the campaign at the foot of the conference.

Photo: Denise McCooey

Photo: Denise McCooey

Both sides will enter the new year hoping for better and meeting in the season opener gives both teams the chance to lay out an early marker for success in what looks set to be a close game.

San Jose won the last three games of their preseason preparations and will hope to keep that momentum going into the new season. They lost 1-0 at Dallas in last year’s opener but have a much better chance of sealing three points this time around.

Colorado, meanwhile, had to wait five games for their first victory of 2015 and will hope to get off the mark quicker this term.

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Pablo Mastroeni has made some key changes to the squad over the offseason, with some talented playmakers joining the club. He will hope they hit the ground running to give Irish striker Kevin Doyle some much-needed service up top.

These two sides met twice last year in two low-scoring affairs. They drew 1-1 in Colorado, before San Jose sealed a 1-0 home win over the Rapids in August. Another close encounter is expected on Sunday.

Team News

San Jose enter the new season without Marc Pelosi, who will be out for some time with a serious knee injury. While they will also have to start without star playmaker Matias Perez Garcia, who will serve a one-game suspension for the red card picked up on the final day of the 2015 season. Innocent Emeghara is back from injury but may start on the bench, though new signing Simon Dawkins should start the game.

Colorado have no injury concerns heading into the new season and so Pablo Mastroeni has a full squad to choose from. New signings Marco Pappa, Shkelzen Gashi and Mekeil Williams will all expect to start. Kevin Doyle should lead the attack.

Key Points

San Jose Earthquakes’ preseason form: W/W/L/L/W/L/W/W/W

Colorado Rapids’ preseason form: W/W/L/D/L/W

Key Stat: San Jose are unbeaten in 12 MLS games against Colorado (W6 D6).

Key Player: Chris Wondolowski – The San Jose talisman so often delivers when it matters most and he will be desperate to drive his team onto an opening day win against Western Conference rivals here. Whether he plays upfront or in midfield, he will expect to influence the game in a positive way for the Quakes.

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Score Prediction

San Jose Earthquakes 2-1 Colorado Rapids – San Jose enjoyed a more promising preseason campaign than the Rapids and should make home advantage count against a team they haven’t lost to since 2011. This should be a close game, and both teams will expect to find the net, but the Quakes look more likely to go on and win it and will look to get 2016 off to a flying start in front of their own fans.