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Los Angeles FC vs. Real Salt Lake Betting Preview: MLS Odds, Picks, Prediction, Expert Tips (Sunday, Sept. 4)

Los Angeles FC vs. Real Salt Lake Betting Preview: MLS Odds, Picks, Prediction, Expert Tips (Sunday, Sept. 4) article feature image
Credit:

James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images. Pictured: Los Angeles Football Club star Gareth Bale.

LAFC vs. Real Salt Lake Odds

LAFC Odds -225
Real Salt Lake Odds +575
Draw +375
Over/Under 3.5 (+125 / -175)
Day | Time Sunday | 10:30 p.m. ET
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Los Angeles Football Club looks to halt a surprising three-game slide when it hosts Real Salt Lake on Sunday in a potential Major League Soccer playoff preview.

Two weeks ago, some believed this LAFC side could set a new MLS points record with European stars Gareth Bale and Giorgio Chiellini in tow. That’s still technically within reach, but after three consecutive defeats they’d have to win their last six outings.

On the other side, Real Salt Lake enters the game in sixth place in the Western Conference and four points clear of the playoff line. The club is unbeaten in four games following a 4-1 home loss to LAFC, most recently rolling to a 3-0 victory against Minnesota United.

Although not that close geographically, this is a fixture with some added heat since Real Salt Lake upset LAFC in the latter’s first playoff game in the 2018 knockout round.

Los Angeles Football Club

In MLS, the summer spending spree from LAFC is relatively unprecedented for a team already firmly in control of its own destiny. Chiellini and Bale were July additions, but it also brought in attackers Cristian Tello and Denis Bouanga in August as well.

The latter made his debut off the bench last Wednesday after a transfer from Saint-Étienne in France. The former signed as a free agent only last week after a five-year spell at Real Betis in Spain.

In that sense, maybe LAFC’s recent dip in form is understandable (and even by design?) as manager Steve Cherundolo tries to figure out how best to use his new pieces.

The side now faces a challenge from Philadelphia for the Supporters’ Shield, but it has always been about postseason success for LAFC since winning the 2019 Shield. With still a six-point margin on second-place Austin, there’s some room to tinker.

By The Numbers

  • 11-1-2 — Home record (W-L-D) for LAFC this season.
  • +1.11 — The Black & Gold’s home xGDiff per 90 minutes this campaign.
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Real Salt Lake

Manager Pablo Mastroeni’s group started strong overall, but it has sneakily improved in recent months with some smart mid-season additions and patience with players brought in earlier.

The latter applies in particular to Venezuelan striker Sergio Cordova, who after a slow start to MLS life has scored five times in his last eight games.

He has been helped as anyone by the return of Jefferson Savarino, who arrived in the late spring and picked up where he left off when he departed the club in 2019, scoring six goals and adding three primary assists.

The result has been an improvement of form on the road in particular, where the club is a respectable 2-3-2 (W-L-D) in its last seven and unbeaten in its last three outings.

By The Numbers

  • 0.57 — Real Salt Lake’s goals scored per game in its first seven away games.
  • 1.57 — Real Salt Lake’s goals scored per outing in its last seven away contests.
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Betting Analysis & Pick

With LAFC such a heavy favorite, even if this a good bounce-back spot at home against a team it has already heavily beaten, the most reliable value is on Both Teams To Score (Yes) at -145 odds and an implied 59.2% probability.

Between LAFC home tilts and Real Salt Lake away games, it’s a wager that has hit on 18 of 28 occasions. That includes the first half of the host’s away itinerary, where it was short-handed and deficient going forward.

Yes, LAFC has kept clean sheets at home in its last two contests. However, those came in games against Charlotte FC and D.C. United. And those are two of the least likely teams to score on their MLS travels.

In general, the Black and Gold don’t quite defend like their position in the table suggests. That’s worth backing here.

The Pick: Both Teams to Score — Yes (-145)

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