LA Galaxy v Los Angeles FC
In a match that is now dubbed ‘El Trafico’ the two teams from Los Angeles do battle at the StubHub Centre. Last season this fixture produced one of the most remarkable matches ever in MLS history as LAFC blew a 3-0 lead in the last 20 mins and Galaxy won 4-3. It was the breakout debut for Zalatan Ibrahimovic as he scored a brace, one of which was an absolutely outrageous goal from long range to stun Bob Bradley’s men. LAFC then also blew a 2-0 home lead against Galaxy in the return fixture, and the final encounter ended a 1-1 draw. So LAFC have yet to beat their arch rivals and will be desperate to get the job done here. This is actually 3rd vs 1st in the Western Conference but there appears to be light years between the two sides at the moment.
LAFC are absolutely romping away in the west this year. They are already a massive 11 points clear of 2nd placed Seattle and it seems a near certainty that they will secure the number one seed this season. You may as well give them the Supporters Shield right now because this team isn’t for stopping. Bob Bradley’s men have been beaten three times in 2019, twice in the league and once in the cup. On all of these occasions they lost 0-1 and the only real way to get a result against them is to take your chances, defend really well and just pray they miss opportunities! Whether the Galaxy are capable of doing that I’m not sure. The LAFC offense is absolutely red hot and they’ve scored 27 away goals in just 11 games! The Galaxy are currently third in the West but have lost 3 of their last 5 games. I thought they put in an extremely worrying performance at home to San Jose Earthquakes last week (1-3). It wasn’t so much the result but the manner in which they got outplayed.
LAFC are -0.5 Asian Handicap favourites around the 1.85 mark. To be honest, I’m really tempted to play this bet because based on recent form there is only going to be one winner here. However, they say the formbook can be thrown out of the window in derby games and that old proverb could very much apply here. Based on last season, the Galaxy might raise their game here and I think we can expect a big reaction after last week’s disappointment. The pick I like is over 3.25 goals. All of the encounters between these two have been absolutely frantic, end to end and full of chances. It is the general nature of each outfit anyway and I’m expecting another high scoring encounter. The most likely outcome is an away win but I just wonder if the Galaxy have something up their sleeve and surprise everyone.
Asian Total Goals Betting Recommendation: Over 3.25 goals at 1.900
Vancouver v San Jose
It has really struck me how well the San Jose Earthquakes are playing at the moment. The California outfit have actually won 6 of their last 9 games and only suffered one defeat during this period. I was really impressed with how they came from a goal down to win 3-1 away at arch rivals LA Galaxy last weekend. The Quakes bossed that match from start to finish and would have scored 5 or 6 goals but for the excellent keeping of David Bignham. Of course, that match was the ‘California Classico’ and San Jose have a knack for playing well in that fixture. This could potentially be a slight comedown after their excellent of last week but new head coach Matias Almeyda has got this team properly firing at the moment and I don’t see them taking any foot off the gas.
At the time of writing I don’t know the Wednesday night result for Vancouver Whitecaps away at New England. However, one thing I do know is that it’s a nightmare trip out there and back for a midweek affair. The Whitecaps could be feeling rough both physically and mentally and it doesn’t help they aren’t in the best of form. Defeat against Seattle (0-1) and then more heavy losses to LAFC (1-6) and SKC (0-3 at home) have put Vancouver in a bit of a downward spiral and they certainly seem like one of the worst teams in MLS at the moment. Just four wins is the lowest tally in the whole league and although they have drawn quite a lot of games I’d say it’s very unlikely they are good enough to make a playoff push this year.
San Jose Earthquakes aren’t particularly known for being a good away team down the years but I sense things have changed in recent times. They totally outplayed their opponents in all four of their latest away fixtures. Defeat at Minnesota was very unlucky but for the most part they have been able to convert dominance into points. I expect the Quakes will have most of the ball here against a limited Whitecaps outfit who tend to stay quite deep and stand off. San Jose have a big advantage in that they can prepare for this fixture all week whereas the Caps had to long haul it to New England on Wednesday. Literally everything is pointing towards a good chance for the visitors so I think the best bet is to take them on a DNB Asian Handicap. At very worst I think the Earthquakes can draw so this seems like a pretty safe pick.
Asian Handicap Betting Recommendation: San Jose Earthquakes DNB at 1.770
Preview by: @meatmansoccer.