Sunday MLS Is Back Betting Odds, Picks, Predictions: Sporting Kansas City vs. Minnesota United Preview (July 12)
Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images. Pictured: Ike Opara #3 of Minnesota United
- Sporting KC is a slight favorite over Minnesota in Sunday night MLS action.
- This is the first match for each team in the MLS Is Back Tournament, but Minnesota will be without star defender Ike Opara.
- Get our betting pick for Sporting KC vs. Minnesota below.
MLS Is Back Odds: Sporting Kansas City vs. Minnesota United
|Sporting Kansas City odds||+133 [BET NOW]|
|Minnesota United odds||+175 [BET NOW]|
|Draw||+265 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||2.5 (-152o/+117u) [BET NOW]|
|Time||Sunday, 8 p.m. ET|
Clubs that started the Major League Soccer season in style go at it Sunday when Minnesota United takes on Sporting Kansas City at the MLS is Back tournament.
The Western Conference combatants headline Group D play at the competition, which is taking place at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando, and both look to carry the form that saw each win the first two matches of their respective seasons before the hiatus.
Sporting Kansas City, which I tabbed as one of the top contenders at this showcase event, was the definition of dominant in its matches at the start of the campaign. The club opened with a 3-1 road victory at Vancouver and followed that up with a 4-0 home rout against Houston at Children’s Mercy Park.
Newcomer Alan Pulido, who arrived in the Midwest from Liga MX side Club Deportivo Guadalajara in the offseason, leads a vaunted attack that could become the best in the Western Conference this season.
On the other side, Minnesota kicked off its season in grand fashion with impressive victories. The Loons stunned Portland, 3-1, in the Timbers’ home opener and delivered a 5-2 trashing to San Jose in their final game before the global pandemic halted soccer around the world. It was a start that really seemed to carry over from Minnesota’s success last season, where it made the MLS playoffs for the first time.
If this game was played on paper, it would be a fairly even match. However, Minnesota is going to be without star Ike Opara roaming the back. Opara, the 2019 MLS Defender of the Year, opted to skip the trip to Orlando to deal with a preexisting condition that’s not COVID-19 related.
He could make the trek down to Florida at some point in the tournament, but for now the Loons are going to have to fill the monster void created via his absence.
With that in mind, I feel things are going to open up for Sporting Kansas City offensively and really put Minnesota on its heels throughout the match. Opara was a big reason why the Loons had so much success last season and at the start of this season, so him being unavailable puts them in a pinch against a team with so much firepower like Sporting Kansas City.
I am backing Sporting Kansas City to pick up the win in this showdown and playing it with confidence. I am also going to play the total going over the number as well. I recommend making it a live wager on the total, though.
Holding out a little longer into the first half is worth the risk to get that lower number that will likely be there after the start.