Orlando City vs. New England Betting Odds, Picks & Predictions for Sunday MLS Playoffs (Nov. 29)
Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images. Pictured: Orlando City’s Rodrigo Schlegel, center, gets swarmed by his teammates.
- Orlando City hosts New England in Sunday's Major League Soccer playoff showdown.
- The winner of this Eastern Conference semifinal faces either Columbus or Nashville in the next round.
- Dillon Essma breaks down the match and explains why predicts plenty of fireworks in Florida.
Orlando City vs. New England Odds
|Orlando City Odds||+132 [BET NOW]|
|New England Odds||+188 [BET NOW]|
|Draw||+250 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||2.5 (-132/+102) [BET NOW]|
|Day/Time||Sunday, 3 p.m. ET|
Orlando City gets ready to host New England in their Major League Soccer postseason match Sunday in an Eastern Conference semifinal-round match.
The winner advances to the conference final, where it will face either Columbus or Nashville for the right to advance to MLS Cup.
This should be an entertaining affair in Florida, which has me excited for what’s in store. Let’s take at look these sides and break down the contest.
The Lions had quite the eventful victory over New York City FC last week in Orlando. The club, which went down a man in the 87th minute following a red card, had to survive for more than 30 minutes against NYCFC to get to the penalty-kick shootout.
On top of that, Orlando goalkeeper Pedro Gallese received a second yellow for leaving his line too early in the penalty shootout.
Yet, somehow, the Lions were able to survive and advance, largely in part to defender/fill-in goalkeeper Rodrigo Schlegel’s a dramatic save. Schlegel had never played in goal before that moment.
— Orlando City SC (@OrlandoCitySC) November 21, 2020
The 1-1 scoreline in regulation was fair, as the expected goals wound up being NYCFC holding a minuscule 2.27-2.16 edge. The game should have featured more goals, but a draw through 90 minutes was a deserved result.
I did like the fight and determination showed by Orlando, which actually had a quality scoring opportunity down a man before the game went to penalties.
If we look at the regular season, Orlando City would have the leg up over New England, especially at home. The +0.32 xG differential is fairly similar to New England’s +0.31. However, I would still favor Orlando City, which has only lost one game at Exploria Stadium all season.
That said, I trust Nani and manager Oscar Pareja in this big spot. The concern is they will be missing Gallese and starting right back Ruan Teixeira, who were both sent off in the NYFC match.
Ruan is a huge blow, but Gallese is a huge reason why Orlando City is where it’s at this postseason. Gallese isn MLS top-5 goalkeeper in my opinion, if not top 3 overall. Simply put, it’s a blow the Lions have to overcome.
If you back Orlando here, you’re really putting your faith in Pareja getting his tactics right and Nani coming up big. Suffice it to say, this will be a big test.
Outside of Nashville, the Revolution had the surprise victory of the playoffs thus far. New England finished eighth in its conference this season with 32 points, putting it right behind Nashville on the table.
Going 8-8-7 would be an OK season for many, but it was pretty average when you have Bruce Arena at the helm. The Revolution’s underlying data of generating 1.42 xG and 1.11 xGA/game tells us they probably should have finished higher up in the table.
Couple that with its convincing win over regular-season champion and Supporters’ Shield winner Philadelphia, and I don’t think people should overlook this New England team.
Right back? Attacker? Who cares, we're up 2-0! pic.twitter.com/0w5xXh94Os
— New England Revolution (@NERevolution) November 25, 2020
Arena, the Revolution manager, is an experienced, diligent manager. Outside of managing the United States Men’s National Team, Arena has been managing in the league since the late 1990s. He is beyond seasoned, which I think helped New England in its win over Philadelphia.
The club dominated the first half, jumping out to a 2-0 lead that was never in jeopardy. However, the xG comparison gave the Union the edge by a 1.45-1.05 margin. That said, the Revolution might have gotten a bit fortunate, but it still was a successful game plan that led to the win.
However, it remains to be seen if New England can do it again.
Betting Analysis & Picks
Bottom line, this is really tough game to call.
I would be betting a full Orlando City side every time, but that’s just not the situation with Gallese and Teixeira missing from this game. I still like Orlando City to advance, but it would be only be a lean. The match is simply tougher handicap with the Lions playing without Gallese.
That said, I am going to play the total to go over the number. There have been at least three goals in 10 goals in the last 12 meetings between these sides across all competitions. Both teams have also scored in seven of their last eight games.
Also, that 12-match history yields more than four goals per game.
Back the total at minus-132, playing it all the way up to -135 as well. I will also jump on both teams to score at -167, which is slightly more expensive, but don’t think that angle misses in this showdown.
Picks: Total Over 2.5 Goals (-132) — up to -137 | Both Teams To Score (-167) — up to -175