Best Odds: 17/5
The Euros and Copa America have officially come to an end and in its place, major European leagues across the continent are set to get underway shortly. However, there are a couple of noteworthy top tiers that are already deep into their campaign already – including Major League Soccer. All clubs are pushing for a place in the playoffs and today, we’ll be previewing a game between two legitimate contenders in New York City and Columbus Crew.
New York City
New York City always seem to be there or thereabouts but for a team billed as one of the biggest expansion sides in years, they certainly haven’t been able to live up to the necessary hype. They’ve got superstar names within their squad but they find consistency incredibly hard to come by – as we saw when they lost back-to-back games recently, one of which was against Columbus. They’re good, but they are a few crucial steps away from being viewed as “great”.
Heber is out through injury as he continues to rehab his ACL injury. Elsewhere, Sands and Johnson are both away with the United States at the Gold Cup.
The reigning MLS champions know that they have a target on their back but instead of panicking, they seem to be pretty relaxed about the whole thing. They’re a very laid back squad and now that they’ve got a championship under their belt, they play with far more confidence than they have done in recent years. Now, it’s just a case of waiting to see how things transpire for the rest of a season in which they should qualify for the playoffs again.
Zardes, Fraser and Diaz are all currently away on Gold Cup duty and will miss out on this game. Williams is seen as a fitness doubt with the following three players being officially ruled out through injury: Artur, Wormgoor and Valenzuela.
Factors to Consider
- Columbus are 5th in the Eastern Conference whereas New York are 6th.
- New York have won four and lost two of their last six games.
- Columbus have won two and drawn four of their last six games.
- New York have scored 11 goals and conceded five in their last six games.
- Columbus have scored seven goals and conceded five in their last six games.
New York are a bit more gungho out of these two teams and will probably try and push the pace a bit more, but we actually feel like that’s going to play right into Columbus’ hands. They’re far more efficient out of the two, they know what it takes to calm the pace of the game down, and they’ve only lost three times across 15 games so far this season. We’re backing a 1-1 draw here with the Crew coming out as the more confident of the two.
Best Odds: 17/5