The MLS Cup playoffs will get underway this weekend with one of the most intriguing games being Minnesota United’s clash with LA Galaxy.
Minnesota United have slowly but surely made their way up through the rankings of the Western Conference throughout the season, finishing up in a deserved fourth place. Alas, they did stutter a bit towards the end of the season, only managing to secure two wins in their last six – although one of them was against Real Salt Lake who wound up finishing above them. They picked up a morale boosting draw against LAFC and also drew against Portland, but lost against both Houston and Seattle.
Minnesota keep things as calm as they can and will aim for an under 2.5 goals outcome, you’d imagine, to edge through to the next round. Either way, though, they’ll still be viewed as favourites amongst the bookmakers, which has caused confusion amongst some fans.
LA Galaxy (14/5)
LA Galaxy’s season was full to the brim with drama, to the point where they were outside of the playoff spots at one stage – despite being situated in the top two for a large portion of the campaign. They finished up in fifth place, two points behind their opponents Minnesota. In their last six they had three massive wins to secure their spot in the playoffs, with those wins coming over Sporting KC (7-2), Montreal (2-1) and Real Salt Lake (2-1). They did lose to Houston, Vancouver and Colorado, but they made it by the skin of their teeth.
Based on Galaxy’s history we can expect a little bit of chaos and a lot of goals, which is why the desire to bet on over 2.5 goals is so overwhelming. They always seem to go down in style regardless of whether they win or lose, and you can bet they’ll be sticking by that philosophy.
When push comes to shove, it just feels like LA Galaxy are the team that will grit their teeth and force their way through in this game. They’ve got the quality necessary to make it happen and while we should always expect the unexpected in Major League Soccer, the temptation of an El Trafico in the playoffs will surge Galaxy on towards a narrow victory.
While Minnesota can be a little bit conservative from time, we think Galaxy will drag them into a war that features goals, goals, goals – ensuring the over 2.5 is met. It’ll start off pretty slow but once both teams get into a rhythm, this could be a really entertaining clash of styles to watch unfold before our very eyes.
Verdict: Back the away win at odds of 14/5 and the over 2.5 goals scored at odds of 4/9. (All odds are taken from bet365).
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