MLS Odds & Predictions: Inter Miami vs. Orlando City Picks & Tournament Winners
Andrew Bershaw/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Orlando City forward Nani (17) during a MLS Preseason soccer match.
- Looking for MLS odds and predictions? Jeremy Pond previews MLS Is Back, complete with a picks for Inter Miami vs. Orlando City on Thursday night.
- You'll also find Jeremy's favorite bets to win the MLS Is Back tournament outright, including a couple of dark horses.
Inter Miami vs. Orlando City Odds
|Inter Miami odds||+130 [BET NOW]|
|Orlando City odds||+187 [BET NOW]|
|Draw||+260 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||2.5 (-143/+110) [BET NOW]|
|Time||Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET|
Nearly two decades ago, two professional soccer teams maintained one of the most heated rivalries in any sport in the state of Florida. The Miami Fusion and Tampa Bay Mutiny always featured hard-nosed, gripping matches when they would go up against each other.
Now, fast forward to 2020, and the latest version of that “Sunshine State” rivalry will be renewed when Orlando City plays Inter Miami in the opening contest of the MLS is Back tournament at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando.
The tournament, which kicks off the return of Major League Soccer from the COVID-19 pandemic that halted the league for months, features a ‘World Cup-style’ format, with six groups playing for the right to advance to the knockout stage of the competition.
And it would only be fitting the league’s two Florida clubs kick things off Wednesday night at 8 p.m. ET inside the Walt Disney World Resort.
Orlando City and Inter Miami, an expansion side this season, are both winless this season and looking to snap their respective streaks.
Orlando City started its campaign with a scoreless draw against Real Salt Lake before suffering a 2-1 loss against Colorado prior to the hiatus. Inter Miami came away with no points in its opening two contests — falling 1-0 to Los Angeles Football Club and 2-1 against D.C. United — and hope to get that elusive win against its in-state counterpart.
It really is tough to gauge how these clubs are going to come out following the lengthy break, but I anticipate some back-and-forth action to kick off this tournament.
Combine the fact Orlando City is winless in its past 10 matches and Inter Miami will be missing defender Roman Torres due to injury, along with newly acquired Leandro Gonzelez Pirez, and we should see a wide-open affair. Mistakes will be made in each other’s defensive thirds of the park, which should lead to several goal-scoring opportunities for both clubs. That said, I am backing the total to go over the number.
If you’re looking for a side, I would give the slight edge to Orlando City, simply because of the fact it’s coming in at full strength, but I am staying away from both options.
Outright Tournament Winner Picks
Odds via DraftKings
Sporting Kansas City (12-1)
Manager Peter Vermes has a club that is deep and talented enough to bring home the tournament hardware. Vermes finally has a marquee striker up top in Alan Pulido, who arrived from Liga MX side Club Deportivo Guadalajara in the offseason.
Sporting Kansas City also might have gotten the best draw of all top clubs when it was placed with Colorado, Minnesota United and Real Salt Lake in the relatively light Group D quartet. Expect a deep run from Vermes’ squad down in Florida.
Toronto FC (14-1)
The league power and 2017 MLS Cup champion might be the deepest club in the entire league, which will help it in this kind of tournament format. The Reds were missing four starters in their home-opening, 1-0- win against New York City and thoroughly dominated the opposition in a match that probably should have been a 3-0 or 4-0 result.
The loss of Ifunanyachi Achara, who was my pick to be the league’s Newcomer of the Year after an impressive debut, is tough after he tore his anterior cruciate ligament during the hiatus, but Toronto FC has so much depth in the middle of the park that it will be able to fill the void. Add in the fact veteran leader Michael Bradley is back and you have a club ready to make a run from Group C at the MLS is Back crown.
Dark Horse Tournament Picks
Despite what the odds are telling you, the Union should be the Group A favorite. Philadelphia has a mix of young talent and veteran standouts to have a big tournament in Orlando, especially if it can improve on the defensive side of things after that thrilling 3-3 draw against LAFC before the global soccer break.
New York City FC (10-1) is getting all the hype in the group and is considered a tournament favorite. It would be unwise, though, to sleep on the Union to not only finish atop the sextet but plant itself as a serious contender entering the knockout stage. At these odds, Philadelphia is clearly the biggest underlay and provides the most value in the entire field.
The Timbers really struggled out of the gate to start their season, suffering a 3-1 loss against Minnesota in their home opener. Portland didn’t look much better in its 1-0 home win against expansion club Nashville FC either, getting outshot by an 11-3 margin at Providence Park.
However, Portland should not be taken lightly, even if it’s been drawn with tournament favorite LAFC (6-1) in the Group F quartet. Diego Valeri and Sebastian Blanco can turn any game on a dime, which puts the club in position to make some noise at the tournament.