CF Montreal looks to get back to its winning ways after its three-game winning streak and six-game unbeaten streak was ended by NYCFC. Ismael Tajouri’s 29th-minute goal was the difference in the 1-0 defeat.
It’ll be exceedingly difficult for Montreal to pick up a result on the road vs the Eastern Conference’s No. 1 team, the New England Revolution. The Revs thrashed Inter Miami 5-0 in their last game and have been firing on all cylinders.
So, it’s no surprise that the Revs are the soccer betting favorite in this match at -225.
Game: New England vs CF Montreal
Location: Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, MA
Time: July 25, 6 p.m. ET
Head to Head
These teams last met in the play-in round of the 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs. Gustavo Bou’s final minute game-winner sent New England through to the playoffs in a 2-1 win. New England reached the Conference Finals and has a great chance to get back there this season.
Montreal and New England met an absurd five times in 2020, in a pandemic impacted season. Montreal did win the first game but New England won the following four matchups. This will be the first game between New England and CF Montreal in 2021.
New England Tops the East
The Revs have been arguably the MLS’s best team so far this season. New England recently ended Atlanta United’s six game home unbeaten streak with a 1-0 win last week. Then, the Revs demolished Inter Miami 5-0 with two goals apiece from Arnor Ingvi Traustason and Adam Buksa. Traustason’s goals were his first with the Revs.
Shot stopping phenom Matt Turner is on international duty with the US at the Gold Cup. Backup Brad Knighton has kept two clean sheets in three games since Turner departed.
Carles Gil has been by far the best midfielder in the MLS this season. The 28-year old Spainiard, who previously played for Aston Villa and Valencia, leads the MLS with 11 assists. Gil also leads all players in key passes, with 70, by a margin of 32.
Gil is a big reason why the Revs have scored the most goals in the MLS this season. Up front, Bou and Adam Buksa have formed a dynamic duo. They have both scored seven goals this season, which ties them for fourth in the league.
It is worth noting that New England has scored in 11 straight games and instills fear in its opponents’ back lines.
In 2021, the top seven teams in each conference will qualify for the first round of the playoffs. There will be no heartbreaking play-in game this year and CF Montreal is in a good position to make it from the East.
At fifth in the Eastern Conference, Montreal is just one point behind second-place Philadelphia Union. This could be a statement win for CF Montreal and these could very well be two teams who make deep playoff runs.
Before Montreal fell to NYCFC in New York, it won a 5-4 thriller vs FC Cincinnati. Mason Toye and Ahmed Hamdi Hussein Hafez scored two goals each. Toye has been a revelation for Montreal, with six goals in nine games this season after three tough seasons with Minnesota.
Montreal showed resilience and came back from both 2-0 and 4-2 down in its much-anticipated return to Saputo Stadium. COVID forced Montreal, and other Canadian teams Toronto FC and Vancouver Whitecaps, to set up shop in the US for essentially a full year.
The Whitecaps still haven’t been given clearance to return to Canada. It’s incredibly impressive how well Montreal has done despite the makeshift setup it had. Toronto and Vancouver are both second to last in the Eastern and Western Conferences, respectively. Meanwhile, Montreal is firmly in playoff position and can put up a fight vs the Revs.
The BetUS sportsbook lists the spread for the match at 1½ goals in favor of New England. That seems pretty large as Montreal has lost just one game this season by more than one goal and New England has won just two games by that margin. I think Montreal will cover the goal line.
Pick: CF Montreal 1½ (-140)