Well our long national
dream nightmare of not watching MLS is thankfully coming to a close and what better time than to have seven(!) matches on the same day that the USMNT plays their Gold Cup quarterfinal match? Great job, MLS: clearly this league is going out of their way to attract more soccer fans to its top-25-in-the-world product!
Montreal Impact v Philadelphia Union – The Impact have historically owned this matchup, having lost only once to the Union since the beginning of 2015. The Union also can’t seem to find a way to score multiple goals on the road. Impact win 3-1.
New York Red Bulls v San Jose Earthquakes – Both the Red Bulls and the Earthquakes were in good form in the run up to the Gold Cup break. The Red Bulls have owned San Jose in New Jersey, losing only once in 13 matches. Flying across the country to play in the heat and the armpit of America. I like the Red Bulls chances, 2-0.
New York City v Toronto FC – NYCFC has never lost to Toronto FC (in the regular season; they got the shit kicked out of them in the playoffs, 0-7 on aggregate). These two teams sit third and second, respectively. NYCFC is 5-2-1 in its last eight home matches. However, TFC is 4-1-3 in its last eight away matches and is the second best MLS team in PPG away from home at 1.5. This potential Eastern Conference Semifinal preview ends in a 2-2 draw.
Minnesota United v Houston Dynamo – The Loons are one of only two teams to take points down in Houston and the Dynamo is one of the only four teams (MNUFC included) to not win on the road. This will be a tough call with Cubo Torres, Boniek Garcia, Romell Quioto, and Alberth Elis still on international duty. To be fair, Francisco Calvo and Jermaine Taylor are out as well, and Johan Venegas is back with the team but hurt. Loons win 4-1.
LA Galaxy v Vancouver Whitecaps – The Galaxy are in a bit of a freefall, punctuated by a 2-6 thrashing at home on the Fourth of July against RSL. The Galaxy have also been, by far, the worst team at home in MLS. They’ve only taken 6 of a possible 27 points at home, so the fact they are in the playoff race is astounding. The Whitecaps are one of the teams they are chasing and I think the Galaxy right their home form and make a run at the playoffs. LA Galaxy win 1-0.
Portland Timbers v Real Salt Lake – Since losses to the bottom two teams in the Western Conference, the Timbers have managed draws with the Sounders, Sporting KC, and the Fire. Portland scores a hell of a lot of goals, but they give up them in almost equal measure. RSL, in spite of hanging six on the Galaxy in their last match, are one of the worst scoring teams in the league and but for MNUFC would be the worst scoring team in the league. Let’s just say that Joey Timber is going to be cutting a lot of pieces of wood. Timbers 4-0.
Seattle Sounders v DC United – The Sounders are 7-2-2 all time against DC United and sitting just below the Whitecaps in the standings. Now is the time for the Sounders to get back on track. They will be without USMNT forwards Clint Dempsey and Jordan Morris. DC United is still without first-team keeper Bill Hamid. The Sounders should have no trouble, especially without Hamid. Sounders win 2-0.
And there you have it, all the soccer fit to print, especially because the only people watching these matches will be the ones in the stadium, so about 90,000 people. Bang up job, MLS. Fucking bang, up, job!