MLS Wednesday Night Betting Preview and 4 Value Picks
Tom Szczerbowski, USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: FC Dallas forward Maxi Urruti
There are four big conference matchups on the MLS slate Wednesday night and every club is feeling good about themselves. Seven of the eight teams were in action last weekend and none of them lost, while Atlanta United (arguably the best in the league) had a bye.
The Eastern Conference kicks things off with two early matchups, followed by a couple of intriguing Western Conference battles:
- Chicago Fire at Philadelphia Union (7:30 p.m. ET)
- Atlanta United at New England Revolution (7:30 p.m. ET)
- Houston Dynamo at Real Salt Lake (9:30 p.m. ET)
- FC Dallas at LA Galaxy (10:30 p.m. ET)
Below I’ve analyzed each matchup and picked out four plays offering value (Season Record: 26-27-2, +15.72 units, 32% ROI).
(All lines as of Wednesday afternoon via Pinnacle sportsbook. All betting percentages are the offshore market average. Bettors can find all the latest odds and betting percentages with a Sports Insights membership).
Here’s a look at the line movement for each matchup:
Chicago Fire at Philadelphia Union (7:30 p.m. ET)
Moneyline odds: Philadelphia -167, Chicago +444, Draw +347
Total: 3 (u-114)
The Union were a bit unlucky not to get all three points last week but did earn a solid 0-0 draw at the New York Red Bulls to make it three straight matches unbeaten. Meanwhile, the Fire pulled off an upset win at Orlando City, 2-1, as +250 moneyline underdogs to snap a two-game losing streak. Philadelphia is just one point ahead of Chicago in the standings but both are on the outside of the playoff picture.
Philadelphia will fully expect to win this match and have moved from -132 to -167 since the line opened. They’ve created far more scoring chances, shots and shots on target than Chicago this season but have five fewer goals to show for it. In the last four meetings between these clubs they’ve combined for 19 goals, so it’s a great opportunity for Philadelphia to break out at home.
The majority of public bettors are taking Philadelphia but nothing too lopsided, and spread bets are nearly 50/50. Most of the value on the Union is gone but I still think Philadelphia (-167) is worthy of a bet. I think they’ll create plenty of opportunities to score so a team total over 1.5 is also a good wager if available.
Atlanta United at New England Revolution (7:30 p.m. ET)
Moneyline odds: New England +164, Atlanta +157, Draw +278
Total: 3 (o-122)
Atlanta had last weekend off to regroup after losing two of three matches, while New England took a point in Vancouver with a 3-3 draw. Last season New England lost an ugly match, 7-0, in Atlanta, but drew at home, 0-0, less than three weeks later in Foxboro.
I love the way this match is setting up from a contrarian standpoint as the Revs have received 46% of moneyline bets and Atlanta United 44%. Just one in every 10 tickets is coming in on the draw (+278) but that’s where I’m putting my money in this one. Each team has plenty of scoring ability so bettors probably aren’t afraid of picking a winner, but I think we see an exciting 2-2 final.
Houston Dynamo at Real Salt Lake (9:30 p.m. ET)
Moneyline odds: Real Salt Lake +156, Houston +162, Draw +282
Total: 3 (o-127)
Both clubs were victorious last week with Houston beating New York City FC, 3-1, after going down early at home, and Real Salt Lake upsetting Seattle, 1-0, on the road. Real Salt Lake closed +559 on the moneyline and got a much-needed first victory away from home.
Things have been clicking for the Dynamo over the last few weeks but public bettors don’t seem to be convinced, as they’ve received just 32% of moneyline tickets. Sharp bettors, on the other hand, have faith and moved the Dynamo’s odds from +177 to 162 since opening at Pinnacle. With a high game total of 3 goals and juice on the over, that bodes well for the road side.
Houston has had no problems scoring away from home and I don’t expect that to change in Real Salt Lake. Although those goals have only translated into one road win this season, that should change tonight, so go with Houston (+162) to get all three points.
FC Dallas at LA Galaxy (10:30 p.m. ET)
Moneyline odds: LA Galaxy +122, FC Dallas +231, Draw +256
Total: 3 (u-140)
FC Dallas continues their impressive season Wednesday night as they travel to LA to take on the Galaxy in the late match. They won as +366 moneyline underdogs in Toronto last Friday and have lost just one game all season long. The Galaxy have been wildly inconsistent but still managed consecutive 1-0 victories over Montreal and San Jose.
Betting has been fairly even across the board but the value on FC Dallas (+231) is too good to pass up. They’ve been the better team all season long and have owned the Galaxy over the last 2+ seasons. LA’s two straight clean sheets are a facade and I’ll be surprised if they keep FC Dallas to fewer than two goals.
Value Plays (Season: 26-27-2, +15.72 units, 32% ROI), All plays risk 1 unit
Philadelphia (-167) vs. Chicago
New England-Atlanta Draw (+278)
Houston (+162) at Real Salt Lake
FC Dallas (+231) at LA Galaxy
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