Most MLS teams are 12 games into the new season so the standings are starting to take shape in each Conference. Over in the East, seventh hosts third on Thursday with New York Red Bulls looking to join Philadelphia Union on 19 points (8pm ET; TV: Live on ESPN+).
The Red Bulls have a game in hand over their opponents so the fixture looks evenly matched based on the form guide up to this point. Closely matched encounters can often reveal some solid value in the betting markets so let’s see if we can pick out some wins with our preview and predictions.
It may look to be a tight contest and the American-friendly sportsbooks’ betting sites have listed odds in excess of +100 on all three possible outcomes. There is, however, a clear favorite with the Red Bulls leading the way at a general +110 to take all three points. Victory for Philadelphia is next up at a general +220 while the draw completes the moneyline picks at a best of +260.
We’ve seen that a win for New York would leave these teams locked on 19 points with the Red Bulls having played 12 games to Union’s 13. As for more recent form, New York edge things marginally with three wins, a draw and one defeat from their last four matches.
In the same period of time, Philadelphia Union have won two, drawn two and lost one. It’s close and, as we haven’t been able to come to a verdict yet, let’s move on to the game’s most important players.
RBNY vs Philly Prop Bets
Goals win games so let’s start our round up of props in the individual goal scorer markets. It’s tight at the top of the first goalscorer betting with three men listed as joint favorites in places. Kacper Przybyłko, Fabio Netto and Daniel Royer can all be claimed at +600 to find the net first.
Two of those players feature on the Red Bulls’ roster and, to be honest, they haven’t exactly started the season in stunning fashion. Brazilian striker Fabio has scored twice in 11 games so far while Austria’s Noyer has yet to find the net in seven appearances.
Philadelphia’s Przybylko may be the better option but the Union man’s record is still modest with three strikes in 12 games.
In games where the strikers are struggling it’s a good idea to look for some midfield options. In the Red Bulls camp, Venezuelan international Cristian Casseres could be the man to watch with four goals in eight MLS games. At +1100 to open the scoring, he is a longshot but could be worth considering at +375 for a goal at any time in 90 minutes.
Moving away from the individual players, what about the team goals betting? We expected Both Teams to Score would be short with two form sides on show and this market is available at an average of around -138. It might be worth noting that voting ‘No’ on BTTS hits the +100 mark after Union drew a blank against Nashville last time out.
Total Goals odds start for us in a similar fashion with a top price of just -114 in places to go over the 2.5 line. To get any interest out of this market, we suggest looking at over 3.5 which is quoted at a general +200 (2/1).
In terms of relevant stats, New York Red Bulls have scored eight goals in their last five games while conceding five times at the wrong end of the pitch. Over at Philadelphia Union, the numbers are similar with nine goals scored and six conceded over the same period.
Across those ten combined games, Both Teams to Score would have landed on five occasions – just 50% of the time.
We’ll round this up with some correct score suggestions and those who expect a few goals could look for a 2-2 outcome at a best of +1400. Alternatively, a 3-1 win for the Red Bulls is listed at a top price of +1600 while the same scoreline in favor of Philadelphia Union is quoted at best odds of +2800.
Our NYRB vs Philadelphia Union Betting Predictions & Picks Recommendations for this Preview
We have been expecting some high scoring games in recent MLS matches and they haven’t quite delivered. Perhaps the problem has been a lack of form up front and that is reflected in some of the individual scoring stats that we’ve highlighted in the previous section.
It may need some of those strikers to fire if we’re going to land the first of our prop bets. We’re backing over the 3.5 goal line in a belief that the likes of Fabio and Przybylko will find their touch on Friday.
For a goalscorer pick, we are moving back to midfield where Cristian Casseres has been impressive this season. The young Venezuelan looks to have a big future in MLS and we are tipping Casseres to find the net and help his New York Red Bulls side to a narrow victory.
So these are our MLS game preview’s predictions and picks advice:
- New York Red Bulls to win on the moneyline @ best odds of +120 with BetOnline.
- Over 3.5 goals @ +210 with Bovada.
- Cristian Casseres to score at any time @ top odds of +375 with Intertops.
Matt Harris is a golf and soccer expert for USA Betting. His other area of specialist knowledge is cricket. He is well known in sports journalism and contributes articles to a plethora of big-name websites and media outlets. Titles that he writes or has written for include: Betfair, BetVictor, Unibet & Just Bookies.