LA Galaxy vs Austin FC Picks, Full MLS Game Preview & Predictions: Back Away Team Draw No Bet

Javier Chicharito HernandezIn front of a home crowd on Sunday (6pm ET), the Los Angeles Galaxy will look to bridge the gap between themselves and their city rivals who currently sit top of the Western Conference, but to do so they’ll have to beat the team currently in second, Austin FC. Who will come out on top at Dignity Health Sports Park? This LA Galaxy vs Austin FC preview, with predictions and picks, aims to find out.

The Galaxy finally regained the winning thread during the week, and they did so by getting the better of their bitter city rivals in the US Open Cup, advancing to the quarter finals as a result. After witnessing three games without a win from the touchline, boss Greg Vanney will be hoping that such a result can spur his team on to get back on track in Major League Soccer. Prior to their win over LAFC just a few days ago, the Galaxy had lost to both FC Dallas and Houston, both in front of a home crowd, while they tied with Minnesota on the road.

As for Austin, well, things continue to go well. They didn’t come out on top against Orlando last time out but given that they went down by two inside the opening 25 minutes of the contest, a tie may not have displeased coach Wolff and fans alike. As things stand, Sunday’s visitors are just two points behind league leaders LAFC, and they are now unbeaten in two following a couple of below par efforts earlier this month. What will really have put a spring in the step of the Austin boys is their win away against the other team in LA just a fortnight ago.

Is home where the heart is?

Home tends to be where the heart is for most, but for the Galaxy this season, it is not clear cut. For starters, they have won just 50% of their home games, emerging victorious from three out of six at Dignity Health Sports Park. They’ve lost each of the other three. What’s more, Greg Vanney’s men have made hard work of shifting through the gears offensively, scoring more than once in just one out of six in front of what tends to be an expectant home crowd.

They have failed to score in two out of the other five, scoring just two goals in their last 270 minutes of home soccer. In terms of points accumulated, only two teams in the Western Conference have performed worse than the Galaxy this term, while nobody has scored less goals. These are worrying signs for the five-times MLS Cup winners.

Visitors up there with the best in the west

As things stand, only one team sits above Josh Wolff’s men in the Western Conference table, so it’s clear that they’re doing something right. One of those things is performing on the road, where they’ve claimed a healthy ten points from six fixtures. Only three teams in the division have taken more traveling points than Austin FC, who’ve won three of their last four away matchups, during which time they’ve scored more goals than the LA Galaxy have at home all season. The obvious disparity in offensive quality could make all the difference on Sunday.

Looking to level the head-to-head

This will be the fourth time that the pair have met since their first encounter back in May 2021. On that occasion, the Galaxy won by two goals to nil at this venue, though they couldn’t repeat the feat a few months down the line, as the Austin boys returned the favour, winning by two goals to nil in front of a home crowd.

This season, the pair met less a month ago in Austin, and on that occasion, it was the Galaxy who took a narrow victory (0-1). When the pair faced off earlier this month, it really was a tight affair. With neither team seriously dominating, they registered just five shots on target between them, two for Austin and three for Galaxy, while there was only a 0.2 expected goal difference, which suggests that perhaps a tie would’ve been a fairer result.

For those who like trends, interestingly, at least one team has always failed to score in this fixture, while there have never been more than two goals scored either.

Visitors offer value

If you are looking for the bet here that offers the most value, then it is hard to find something better than the visiting win, which even when accompanied with the insurance of ‘Draw No Bet’ is available at eye-catching odds of +200 (2/1). OK, the reverse fixture, which took place just three weeks ago, did go the way of the Galaxy, but there was very little in it, while there can be no denying that the teams have moved in opposite directions since.

What’s more, what Austin have produced on the road of late far outweighs anything the hosts have done in front of their own fans. After all, the Los Angeles Galaxy are the lowest home scorers in the west, while they’ve picked up less points on average than the visitors have on the road.

They have also fared slightly worse in terms of expected goals this season, which means that they’ve not quite doing as much as the visitors in terms of creating more chances than they concede. It’s also worth noting that the visitors have extra firepower, what with Argentine Sebastian Driussi now on eight goals, as well six other players on two or more, compared to Galaxy who right now, only seem able to call upon Javier Hernandez in the final third. Only one other Galaxy players has scored two goals this season. At the current odds with the sports betting sites that Americans can join, this is enough to support a visiting team that continues to impress. So this is the sole prediction and pick for this LA Galaxy vs Austin FC preview:

  • Austin FC to win with the ‘draw no bet’ @ best betting odds of +200 (2/1) with BetOnline.