There really isn't much between the teams at the top of the Eastern and Western Conferences, and the race for the play-off places is wide open heading into game week 13. Columbus Crew have surprised many in the East and look like they could claim their second MLS trophy this season, while the reigning champions Seattle Sounders look like strong contenders from the West.
2018 MLS Cup winners, Atlanta United, are well off the pace as things stand, but could still turn things around and finish in the play-off places. Nashville are enjoying the best season of the two new franchises, but there is;t much between themselves and Inter Miami. Sporting KC are going strong in the Western Conference but look like they will face tough competition from reigning champions Seattle Sounders and Minnesota United. Both of the Los Angeles clubs look likely to feature in the play-offs this season, and you can never count either of them out when it comes to a knock-out competition.
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Thursday's Matches Betting Tips
New York City vs Toronto
Eastern Conference sides New York City and Toronto go head to head on Thursday in what is expected to be a close and competitive match-up. New York City beat Toronto 3-1 the last time the two teams clashed, but the Canadians have outperformed their hosts so far this season.
Atlanta United vs Dallas
Dallas are looking to make it three wins on the run against the 2018 MLS Cup winners Atlanta United this week. The hosts have been in poor form of late and could really do with the 3pts if they harder genuine ambitions of making the play-offs this season.
New England vs Montreal Impact
The head to head record between these two clubs is tied at 10 wins, 3 draws, and 10 defeats apiece, with New England claiming a 1-0 win the last time they squared-off against one another. The form of both teams has been hit a miss of late, but a result on Thursday could be the start of a positive run for either club.
Sporting KC vs Orlando City
The hosts usually perform better whenever Sporting KC and Orlando City lock horns with five of the duo's seven previous meetings ending in home wins. Sporting KC have outperformed Orlando City so far this season and will be confident of securing all 3pts on Thursday.
Columbus Crew vs Minnesota United
Two of this season's top-performing MLS sides meet on Thursday, and we're expecting a tight and tense 90-minutes between the pair. Minnesota have had the better of Columbus Crew in the duo's last two encounters, but the hosts have been the early pace-setters in the Eastern Conference.
Cincinnati vs Philadelphia Union
Cincinnati's second season in the MLS hasn't been much easier than their first, with the club struggling at the bottom end of the Eastern Conference. Philadelphia Union got the domestic double over Cincinnati in the last campaign and have completely outplayed Thursday's host so far this season.
Chicago Fire vs Houston Dynamo
Chicago Fire have won three of their last six matches against Houston Dynamo and could really do with another victory on Thursday. The Fire are lingering in the bottom half of the Eastern Conference and are without a win in their last four matches.
Inter Miami vs New York RB
As expected, Inter Miami's debut season in the MLS looks set to be very tough, and things don't get much easier for the new franchise as New York RB provide the opposition this Thursday. The Red Bulls claimed a win in their last away game against D.C. United and will be aiming to make it three games on the road unbeaten when they make the trip to Miami.
Nashville vs D.C. United
These two teams played out a 1-1 draw when they met for the very first time in their history back in February for a friendly. Nashville have, so far, adapted well in their debut MLS campaign and will be looking to make it four home games unbeaten when they take on D.C. United.
Colorado Rapids vs SJ Earthquakes
The away side hasn't won when these two sides have gone head to head since way back in 2013. Both teams sit in the bottom half of the Western Conference and could really use a win this Thursday. 3pts could be on the cards for one of these clubs seeing as only two of their last seven meetings have ended in stalemates.
MLS Outright Predictions
Only the ‘Winner' market is available for outright selection as things stand, and we're going to be taking a look at all the favourites and their best prices. These odds are subject to change week by week as teams find or lose their form. Last year's champions, Seattle Sounders, are right up there as one of the favourites, and we have a list of the top ten contenders as things stand.
The 2020 MLS season has been interrupted by recent pandemic, and as things stand, BetVictor is the only bookmaker currently supplying outright markets for the winner of the 2020 MLS Cup. Here are the outright winner odds for the top contenders for this season's MLS Cup.
Considering their performances so far this season, Columbus Crew and Sporting KC are worth a bet at those prices as both have impressed in 2020. Cincinnati are priced @ 500/1 to win the MLS Cup, which is hardly surprising given their performances last and this season. Here are a few more of the outsiders' current prices with BetVictor.
Montreal Impact & New England @ 25/1
Minnesota United, FC Dallas, Portland Timbers & New York RB @ 33/1
Real Salt Lake @ 50/1
Colorado Rapids @ 66/1
D.C. United & Vancouver Whitecaps @100/1
Chicago Fire & SJ Earthquakes @ 150/1
Our Outright Prediction
Given their performance so far this season and the fact they claimed the trophy in 2019, we're predicting that the Seattle Sounders will win the MLS Cup and like the look of Columbus Crew to join them in the final. A lot can change between now and the end of the regular MLS season in December, but there are a few standout performers so far.
MLS Betting Tips & Predictions
The MLS is celebrating it's 25th Birthday this year, and while it has been a memorable season for global off the field reasons, the football in the Eastern and Western Conference should not be overshadowed.
Due to the two new franchises that joined the MLS this season, Inter Miami and Nashville, this will be the first-ever campaign in which the teams don't all play each other at least once. With the current restrictions on travel across the USA, the MLS has so far only released confirmed fixtures between 18th-27th September. More fixtures will be added to the regular season once the government confirms travel protocols.
One fixture that has had its date confirmed is the MLS Cup final, which is due to take place on the 13th December. The final, as always, the team that progresses through the Eastern Conference play-offs and the side that makes it through the Western Conference play-offs.
MLS Markets & Bookmakers
The MLS, like the major league across Europe, is covered by all the top bookmakers providing odds on all of the most popular betting markets in football. Games in the MLS tend to kick-off very late at night and in the early hours of the morning to anyone watching or betting in the UK and the rest of Europe. The fact the MLS kick-off times are so different from the likes of the Premier League, Bundesliga, La Liga, and Serie A makes their matches popular to bet on.
Here is a list of the top five bookmakers that cover MLS games.
As mentioned above, all of these established bookmakers cover the popular markets that most punters like to bet on, including,
- Both Teams to Score
- To Lead Anytime
- Anytime Goalscorer
- Total Goals Under/Over
- Double Chance
- Draw no Bet
- Handicaps/Asian Handicap
- Both Teams to Score & Result
- Total Goals Under/Over & Result
The MLS markets aren't limited to just these markets. You can also bet on markets like To Win from Behind, Player to be Sent-Off, Most Corners, and many more, all of which will be covered by one or more of the major bookmakers. Skybet even take requested bets for the MLS, which means you can send it a bet like ‘Over 2.5 goals and 1+ corners in each half for both teams', and Skybet will work out the odds. The great thing about requested bets is that you can back someone else's bet as Skybet publishes requested bets.