Clash of the Titans
It’s officially official. There’s going to be a new MLS champion. The Philadelphia Union fulfilled their role as betting online favorites and defeated New York City FC in the Eastern Conference Final, eliminating the option of having a back-to-back champion for the first time since 2012.
Now, the Union will collide with Los Angeles FC in the MLS Cup on Saturday in Los Angeles. Whoever wins will become the 15th American soccer champion. As if that wasn’t enough, we’re talking about the two best teams during the regular season. In other words, it’s going to be an epic showdown. Trust me, we aren’t allowed to use the word showdown lightly.
Let’s check the latest MLS odds, stats, injury reports, and MLS lines for Los Angeles FC vs Philadelphia Union. We’ve plenty of MLS betting odds for you to consider.
Los Angeles FC: Supporters’ Shield Luck
Los Angeles FC is the ninth team to reach the championship game in the year in which they won the Supporters’ Shield. Of the previous eight teams to reach the MLS Cup after winning the Supporters’ Shield, seven went on to win the Grand Finale.
But enough about luck, let’s focus on facts. LAFC finished atop the standings in the Western Conference with 67 points. They also finished as the top-scoring team with 66 goals, one more than Austin FC. Defensively, they allowed 38 goals. Only FC Dallas allowed less with 37. Summing up, we’re talking about a well-balanced team.
In the conference semifinals, they defeated the Los Angeles Galaxy 3-2, exactly like we predicted, including the final score. Denis Bouanga was named Man of the Match after scoring a brace, but it was Cristian Arango who scored the winning goal in stoppage time.
Last Sunday, Arango and company had no mercy on Austin FC and crushed them 3-0 in the Western Conference Final. Arango scored the opener in the first half before Maximiliano Urruti (own goal) and Kwadwo Opoku scored in the second.
LAFC has been a more reliable soccer pick when playing at home. They own a 15-2-2 record. On the other hand, they finished 8-2-7 on the road. That’s why they come in as the favorites at -130. Arango and his 18 goals are another reason. As NBA Jam’s narrator would say: He’s on fire!
Philadelphia Union: Talking About Balance
Los Angeles FC is a well-balanced team, but the Philadelphia Union are an even better example of balance. They finished the regular season with a goal difference of plus-46, the second-highest in MLS history.
Offensively, the trio of Daniel Gazdag, Julian Carranza, and Mikael Uhre have combined for 51 goals, including in the postseason. Only two trios of teammates have combined for more in a single season.
Defensively, no other goalkeeper has finished with more clean sheets than Andre Blake, who has 16. The last one was in the Western Conference semifinal, in which the Union defeated Cincinnati FC 1-0. Leon Flach was the scorer.
Most recently, in the conference final, they defeated NYCFC 3-1 with Carranza, Gazdag, and Cory Burke as the scorers. The Union showed a lot of resilience as they fell behind when Maximiliano Moralez scored the opener 12 minutes into the second half.
Philly owns a 7-5-5 record when playing on the road but, come on: All of the above should be enough to declare them a tempting online gambling underdog, especially at +305.
Los Angeles vs Philadelphia Union Head-to-Head
- Previous Matches: 4
- Los Angeles FC Victories: 1 (10 goals)
- Philadelphia Union Victories: 0 (7 goals)
- Draws: 3
These two met once in the regular season and didn’t disappoint. The match, also held at Banc of California Stadium, finished 2-2. Los Angeles FC came from behind twice thanks to Kwadwo and Franco Escobar, who scored in the second half. Gazdag and Carranza scored for the Union.
LAFC has the only victory between the sides, winning, 4-1, in the first-ever encounter, in June 2018 in Los Angeles.
Los Angeles vs Philadelphia Union Match Information
- Date: Saturday, Nov. 5
- Time: 6 p.m. ET
- Location: Banc of California Stadium, Los Angeles
- Los Angeles vs Philadelphia Live Stream: Fubo TV
Los Angeles vs Philadelphia Betting Lines
Los Angeles vs Philadelphia Prediction
While Blake is the best goalkeeper, Maxime Crepeau and LAFC’s defense just held high-scoring Austin FC to zero goals, nada. During the regular season, Austin FC averaged 1.9 goals per game, and Sebastian Driussi, the franchise’s face, finished as the league’s top scorer with 25 goals. In other words, LAFC have nothing to fear against the Union. Finally, playing at home and having a deeper roster will end up making the difference. Last Sunday, Latif Blessing, Gareth Bale, and Cristian Tello didn’t play, and they still won 3-0.
Of course, the visitors will put up a good fight, that’s why my soccer betting prediction is a close victory for LAFC.
Score Prediction: LAFC 2, Philadelphia Union 1