MLS – Orlando City v Seattle Sounders Preview (7/8/16)


Orlando preview

Jason Kreis’ first match in charge of Orlando was a successful one. They beat New England 3-1 last week and generally played quite well. The Orlando offence misfired for a while but has returned to better form in recent weeks, netting seven goals in three games. They were massively aided by the return of star playmaker Kaka last week. The Brazilian oozes class at this level and his vision and creativity is superb. Fellow midfielder Cristian Higuita is suspended today, and they might be a little light in the middle because they traded Darwin Ceren away to San Jose recently. Orlando haven’t lost at home this season and this stadium has become quite a fortress for them since they became an MLS team. The Florida side have drawn a huge seven out of eleven contests here though and one of the main reasons why they’ve dropped so many points in 2016.

Seattle preview

The Sounders remain second bottom of the Western Conference and have endured a horrible season so far. Things were so bad that long standing coach Sigi Schmid was sacked. Quite literally, something had to change and Seattle are a side used to challenging in the upper reaches of the table. Brian Schmetzer is currently interim boss, someone who knows the club inside out and was assistant to Schmid for quite some time. He managed to draw his first match in charge, 1-1 against LA Galaxy. I thought Seattle played fairly well in that game and probably should've won. Their main problem all season has been converting chances into goals, and again it was an issue hit them hard in that fixture. The Sounders have recently signed playmaker Nicolas Lodeiro from River Plate. He’s one of the most expensive ever MLS signings, and I have to say looked a cut above this level on debut. He’s well worth watching here and could cause Orlando loads of problems.

Conclusion & betting analysis

Orlando home games are usually a hotbed for goals and end to end football. This stadium simply promotes attacking football with its great carnival atmosphere and since Orlando came into MLS one of their main aims has been to entertain. They suck even the most defensive sides into shootouts here in FLorida and I don’t expect Seattle will be able to resist either. The Sounders have a reputation this year as more of an under team, mostly due to their own inabilities in front of goal. Suddenly with the acquisition of Lodeiro they look much more threatening going forwards though. Add in Clint Dempsey & Jordan Morris, maybe this team might start to score more goals soon. I’d imagine Orlando will probably win, but the Sounders might start to turn the corner with a new coach and a couple of new players. I don’t trust the Orlando defence enough to back the hosts. I will definitely have a piece of the over 2.75 goal line though. Most Orlando home games have an over 3 line and the only reason the bookies are more generous is because of Seattle’s reputation.

Prediction: 3-1
Recommended bet 1 unit: Over 2.75 goals @ 1.99 (minimum odds acceptable 1.75)

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