Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Real Salt Lake Odds, Picks, Predictions: Wednesday MLS Betting Preview (July 7)

Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Real Salt Lake Odds, Picks, Predictions: Wednesday MLS Betting Preview (July 7) article feature image

Abbie Parr/Getty Images. Pictured: Real Salt Lake standout Rubio Rubin.

  • Real Salt Lake takes on Vancouver in Wednesday's Major League Soccer action.
  • Both sides will be looking to pick up all three points in this intriguing Western Conference showdown.
  • Ian Quillen analyzes the match below and explains why he thinks Real Salt Lake opens the scoring.

Vancouver vs. Real Salt Lake Odds

Vancouver Odds+240
Real Salt Lake Odds+105
Over/Under2.5 (-125/ -105)
Day | TimeWednesday | 10 p.m. ET
How To WatchESPN+
Odds as of Wednesday morning via BetMGM.

It's deja vu all over again when Real Salt Lake faces the Vancouver Whitecaps at Rio Tinto Stadium on Wednesday in Major League Soccer action.

There's a twist, though. Although the venue is the same as for Real Salt Lake’s 3-1 victory on June 18, this time Vancouver is the "home" team at a stadium it has been using because of pandemic travel restrictions between Canada and the United States.

The odds have shifted slightly in the Whitecaps’ favor from the previous meeting, but that movement more likely reflects these teams' relative fortunes since that first matchup.

Vancouver still hasn’t won a match since May 8, but it’s coming off a pair of draws away to Seattle and FC Dallas.

Real Salt Lake has lost two of its last three games, falling 2-1 on the road to Seattle and 1-0 at home to Los Angeles Football Club. There’s also a home draw against Houston sandwiched between.

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Vancouver Looking Halt Long Winless Streak

The Whitecaps keep trying to bust down the proverbial door to escape their seven-game winless run.

It took Jimmy Medranda's 71st-minute goal to prevent victory in Seattle on June 26. Then last Sunday's draw came in even more devastating fashion: an own goal in second-half stoppage time against Houston.

The Whitecaps might seem unlucky. However, a look at the analytics suggest they've created some of their own misfortune.

Vancouver has failed to generate more expected goals than any of its opponents over the last seven games, according to StatsBomb. The Whitecaps have also failed to score first in any of those matches.

And finding the net could get more difficult Wednesday without Lucas Cavallini, who is coming off goals in back-to-back games

He has departed to join the Canada national team for the CONCACAF Gold Cup, as has first-choice goalkeeper Maxime Crepeau.

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Real Salt Lake Squandering Chances for Points

At the time, Real Salt Lake's dramatic previous victory over Vancouver felt like it could've been a turning point for the better.

In truth, the club was fortunate to get two stoppage-time goals in that win, but has been paying that cosmic debt since. They out-created opponents by a 2.9-1.4 in xG over their last two games, according to StatsBomb, but only earned a point out of six possible.

Striker Bobby Wood has now appeared in three consecutive games off the bench for manager Freddy Juarez since joining the team following the expiration of his contract at 2. Bundesliga side Hamburg in Germany.

The 28-year-old looks well off the form that once made him a regular for the U.S. Men’s National Team. He only has one shot on target and 0.1 xG over his three appearances.

Damir Kreilach and Rubio Rubin remain the primary goal threats m. The latter came closest to scoring against LAFC, only for his potential equalizer to be cleared off the line by Eddie Segura.

Betting Analysis & Pick

This is a strange one. It's pretty clear the "visitor" actually has home-field advantage, but it's not like Vancouver had to travel.

Then you throw in a previous meeting where Real Salt Lake emerged as 3-1 winner, but also flattered to deceive. It makes value a little hard to project.

So, I tried to see if I could find tendencies for each club that held up regardless of playing home or away. And I might have spotted one in terms of the team to score the first goal.

Real Salt Lake has scored first in six of its 10 games, which is notable given it only won three of them. Maybe most importantly is the fact Vancouver has conceded the first goal in nine out of 11 matches. That’s every contest in which it didn't preserve a clean sheet.

There might not be an obvious causal variable, but these kinds of patterns often repeat. And if you bet on Real Salt Lake to score the first goal, you can get it at -145 odds and a 59.2% implied probability.

That's fractionally lower than a 6-in-10 ratio and way under a 9-in-11 ratio. If you halve the difference, it's good value.

Pick: Real Salt Lake To Score First (-145)

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