Saturday, July 24, 2021

Prediction: DC United vs Toronto FC

Veselin Trajkovic in Free Soccer Predictions, MLS 3 Jul 2021

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Verdict: Home win

Best odds: 17/20

Bookmaker: 888sport

D.C. United are set to welcome Toronto FC at the Audi Field in Washington D.C. on Saturday in what will be the 12th MLS match of the season for the hosts and 11th for the visitors.

D.C. United

D.C. United were one of the charter clubs of the American top flight and have been competing in the MLS since 1996. They won the league title in the first two seasons, then again in 1999, and in for the last time so far in 2004. In 2020, however, they finished 14th in the Eastern Conference and 24th overall.

At the moment, United are eighth in the Conference with 13 points, the same as New York Red Bulls in seventh and Montreal in ninth.

Their last-six match record stands at two wins, both over David Beckham’s franchise Inter Miami, 0-3 away and 1-0 at home, a goalless draw away to Montreal, and three defeats; 0-1 at home to Orlando City, the same as against Philadelphia, and 2-1 away to New York City. In that game, they saw a ninth-minute opener scored by Nigel Robertha overturned late as Keaton Parks and Thiago Andrade struck in the 84th and the fifth minute of stoppage time, respectively, for the home side.

Team News

Captain Steven Birnbaum has been out with an ankle problem and will miss out again, the same as fellow defender Chris Odoi-Atsem who is struggling with abdominal injuries.

However, Peruvian winger Edison Flores could be back in contention after missing four previous matches through a torn muscle.

Much will depend on Ola Kamara for Hernan Losada’s team. The Norwegian striker is United’s main attacking threat, with four goals in seven appearances this season so far.

Toronto FC

The Canadian team has been competing in the MLS since 2005, when owners Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment paid $10 million for the franchise. They were crowned as champions for the first and only time so far in 2017. In 2020, they finished runners-up to Philadelphia in the Eastern Conference, and then the same to reigning champions Columbus Crew in the overall placement.

They can’t be happy with where they are at the moment, though, sitting second from the bottom in the conference with meager five points from 10 matches so far. It’s the same tally as Chicago, the only team below, and three points less than Inter Miami in 12th place.

Just one of those five points came in the last six matches, coming from a 1-1 draw away to New York City back in mid-May. They lost the following five games straight; 1-0 away to Orlando City, 2-1 away to Columbus Crew, 2-3 at home against Orlando again, 3-2 away to Nashville, and 0-2 at home to Cincinnati.

Team News

The only player whom manager Chris Armas won’t be able to call upon is Nigerian winger Ifunanyachi Achara, a long-term absentee with a severe knee injury.

Meanwhile, the player whose form seems to stand out from the rest of the team is midfielder Jonathan Osorio, with three goals in the five MLS matches he’s been involved in so far.

Conclusion

Toronto’s recent form can only be described as dire, and it doesn’t really feel as if they’re ready to break the cursed streak just yet. United will certainly be looking to take advantage of it, and they should produce just enough from their locker to keep the three points for themselves.

Verdict: Home win

Best odds: 17/20

Bookmaker: 888sport

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Veselin Trajkovic


Vesko is a football writer that likes to observe the game for what it is, focusing on teams, players and their roles, formations, tactics, rather than stats. He follows the English Premier League closely, Liverpool FC in particular. His articles have been published on seven different football blogs.

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