MLS Picks and Predictions Sunday May 21

by Taylor Smith
on May 20, 2017

Soccer Sunday brings another three MLS games, with yet another clash between Orlando City and NYCFC. These two clubs will always be linked because they entered the league in the same year back in 2015, and this will already be the third meeting in the first two months of this season. Orlando City have won each of the first two, and the Blues will be eager to get back in the win column after losing a winnable game in Salt Lake City during the week.

Without further ado, let’s jump right into our picks and predictions for today’s three matches.

Columbus Crew
VS
New England Revolution
Total: 2.5
  • Moneyline:Columbus +300, New England -115, Draw +295
  • Betting Value:That +295 draw looks solid.

The Crew got a brilliant result last weekend when they came back from 0-2 down to beat Montreal, 3-2. The win vaulted Columbus back into the No. 3 spot in the Eastern Conference, a point ahead of Chicago entering the weekend. They’ll face another stiff road test today when they face the Revolution at Gillette Stadium.

The Crew have largely benefited from a schedule heavy with home games. Seven of their 12 matches have come at MAPFRE Stadium, though they have also won two of their five road games to this point. Four of their next six games will come away from home, so this could be a crucial stretch that determines whether they can hang in the playoff race. They’ll have to fortify their shoddy back line, as their 17 goals conceded is one of the worst marks in the league so far.

The Revs must love playing at home, because they sure are atrocious away from home. They’re a winless 0-4-2 away from Gillette this season, but an unbeaten 3-0-2 in Foxborough. New England ended a five-game winless run by throttling RSL last weekend, 4-0, with all four goals coming from different players.

Whichever team is able to control the tempo of this one should have a decent advantage. The Crew certainly have the firepower to dismantle a shoddy Revs’ back line, though, and they should carry some momentum into this one.

Pick

Columbus
2
New England
2
LA Galaxy
VS
Minnesota United
Total: 3
  • Moneyline: LA +180, Minnesota +145, Draw +240
  • Betting Value: Take the Over here with two subpar defensive sides going head-to-head.

With their season seemingly on the verge of completely falling apart, the Galaxy rallied for a convincing 3-1 win on the road against the Red Bulls last Sunday. Curt Onalfo’s men haven’t been able to sustain a long period of solid play yet this season, but they’re still only two points back of Vancouver for the last playoff spot out west. Minnesota, meanwhile, lost a tough game against surging Toronto last weekend, 3-2.

Positive results in back-to-back weeks against Chicago and New York has to have the Galaxy feeling pretty good about where they are. They’ve been curiously awful at home (1-3-2), but their 2-2-0 road mark has helped keep their heads slightly above water. They’ve gotten Giovani Dos Santos involved more offensively, which has helped propel them forward over the last couple of weeks. The Mexican international is one of the league’s most talented goalscorers, so it only makes sense that they should look to get him the ball as often as possible in order to create chances.

MNUFC is another team that got off to an atrocious start this season, but they have looked legitimately impressive over the last few weeks. The 28 goals conceded is still the most in the league by a fairly wide margin, but they can score them, as well. Drawing away at Houston a few weeks back was an excellent result, as was their 2-0 triumph over first place Sporting KC two weeks ago. There’s no shame in losing in Toronto right now, either.

We’re buying the Loons’ form more than we are the Galaxy’s. They proved us wrong last week against RBNY, but Minnesota is a tough environment for any foe.

Pick

Minnesota United
3
LA Galaxy
2
New York City FC
VS
Orlando City
Total: 3
  • Moneyline: NYCFC +250, Orlando City +105, Draw +250
  • Betting Value: Orlando City at +105 on the moneyline looks solid to us.

As mentioned in the open, this is already the third meeting of the season between NYCFC and Orlando City. The Lions have gotten the better of the Blues in each of the first two games, and this could be tough on NYCFC as they’re playing their third game in the span of a week. They were disappointingly beaten by Real Salt Lake despite taking an early 1-0 lead on Wednesday, and Patrick Vieira will have some decisions to make regarding his starting XI.

A 1-1 win in midweek at San Jose was a positive result for the Lions. It was only the second time in five tries so far this season that they’ve earned a positive result away from home. In games in their brand new Orlando City Stadium, though, they’ve been peerless. City is an unbeaten 5-0-1 in games in their fortress, including a 1-0 win over NYCFC on opening day.

Despite NYCFC having emerged as one of the league’s most decorated clubs since joining the league, Orlando City have owned them. NYC has won just one of the first nine head-to-head meetings between these teams. They’re also winless in Orlando. We think that streak continues here.

Pick

Orlando City
2
NYCFC
1
MONEYLINE
DECIMAL
FRACTIONAL
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