MLS News: Prediction: Portland Timbers – Los Angeles FC

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Verdict: away win

Best odds: 21/20

Bookmaker: Betfair

Wednesday night (early Thursday morning in Europe) at Providence Park in Portland, Oregon, the Portland Timbers will welcome Los Angeles FC to the MLS. The match will be the 13th of the season for the hosts and the 14th for the guests.

Portlandland Lumber

The Portland Timbers as we know them today were founded in 2009, although they bear the name of a club originally formed in 1975. They have been a part of the MLS since 2011 and have finished top two Western Conference times so far, in 2013 and 2017. Last season they finished in third place.

At the moment, the team led by Giovanni Savarese occupies seventh place in the conference with 16 points, five less than LA FC in fifth, two less than Minnesota in sixth (although they have one game less on both), and on same score as Real Salt Lake in sixth place.

Their form cannot be called exactly sparkling, with three defeats, two wins and one draw in their last six games. They were defeated 3-0 away in Philadelphia, then won 2-1 at home to Sporting KC, drew 2-2 in Houston against Dynamo, lost at home to Minnesota 0-1, were defeated 4-1 away to Austin, and eventually beat FC Dallas 1-0 at home, thanks to an 84th-minute goal from Jeremy Ebobisse.

Team news

Savarese’s team was severely hampered by injuries. Winger Andy Polo (tendon rupture), striker Jaroslaw Niezgoda (ACL), midfielder Cristhian Paredes (thigh muscle strain), left back Ismaila Jome (Achilles tendon rupture) and goalkeeper Jeff Atinella ( thigh muscle rupture) are not all available for selection for this match, and most of them will be out for a long time to come.

Los Angeles FC

Los Angeles, more commonly called LA FC, was founded in 2014 and joined the MLS as part of an expansion in 2018. They were crowned MLS champions in 2019, their only title so far. In 2020, they finished seventh in the Western Conference.

As has been said, LA FC are currently fifth in the conference with 21 points from 13 games. The Colorado directly above has the same tally and city rivals LA Galaxy in third place have three more.

Unlike Portland, Bob Bradley’s side have performed well, having won four of their last six games, drawn once and lost once. They started the race with a 1-1 home draw to Houston Dynamo, followed by a 2-0 home triumph over Dallas, a 2-1 away defeat to Sporting KC, a 0-1 win away against Real Salt Lake and Vittoria 0-2 away to Austin. In the end, they beat Real Salt Lake 2-1 again, this time at home, with Diego Rossi and Carlos Vela scoring both sides of Aaron Herrera’s goal for the visitors.

Team news

Bradly has all of his players available but one; Striker Kwadwo Opoku hasn’t played in a long time due to a severe knee problem.

Vela and Rossi should drive together again.

Conclusion

It is a very important match for both teams, but LA FC will certainly look to take advantage of the home team’s poor fitness and injury problems to establish a stronger foothold for places leading to the series play-offs the final. If they enter the contest concentrated, they should come out victorious.

Verdict: away win

Best odds: 21/20

Bookmaker: Betfair

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