Friday, July 23, 2021

Prediction: New York Red Bulls vs Philadelphia Union

Tom Dunstan in Free Soccer Predictions, MLS 8 Jul 2021

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Verdict: New York Red Bulls win

Best Odds: 13/10

Bookmaker: Unibet

Looking to continue on what has been a real romp on home soil, New York will welcome Philadelphia to the Red Bull Arena in the early hours of Friday morning.

New York Red Bulls

Starting with the hosts, while New York might have been disappointed by the way they ended June, The Red Bulls certainly bounced back in some style last time out. Despite making the trip to a high-flying Orlando City outfit earlier in the week, Gerhard Struber’s side picked up an eye-catching 2-1 win on the road and they have continued to impress since bringing in the former Barnsley boss. Now with their sights firmly set on breaking back into the top-seven in the Eastern Conference, the former MLS champions have bounced back from that action-packed 3-2 loss against New England last month. Tipped as one of the standout picks to clinch another Final Series spot this year, Struber will undoubtedly be excited by his side’s continued purple patch on home soil. Last seen at The Red Bull Arena grabbing a 2-0 victory against Nashville SC, New York have won each of their last four MLS home fixtures on the spin, bagging themselves a pair of goals in each of those victories.

Team News

The Red Bulls have confirmed that the trio of Aaron Long, Andrew Gutman, and Daniel Royer have not recovered from their injury issues and will not take part on Friday.

Philadelphia Union

As for the visitors, while Philadelphia might have continued on a stunning run of form when opening the 2021 campaign, The Union really came crashing back down to earth last time out. Heading into last month’s international break firmly battling it out at the top of the Eastern Conference, the defending MLS champions now find themselves in a real battle to make up some ground. Making the trip to the Red Bull Arena sat five points adrift of New England and top spot, Jim Curtin’s men also saw their extended nine-match unbeaten run come to an abrupt end last time out. Putting in what was a sluggish display against Nashville SC on the road, Philadelphia were hit with a 1-0 defeat, their first MLS loss since May 2nd. Including that defeat away at the Nissan Stadium earlier in the week, The Union have failed to win any of their last three contests on the road, including back-to-back 2-2 and 3-3 draws against Atlanta and Chicago.

Team News

Philadelphia have a real injury headache on their hands with Jack de Vries, Anthony Fontana, and Ilsinho all missing in New York.

Likewise, Andre Blake, Cory Burke, and Alvas Powell are playing in the Gold Cup so will also be out this week.

Key Factors to Consider

    • Including a 1-0 win when the two sides last faced off back in May, Philadelphia have won each of their last three meetings against Friday’s hosts.
    • However, The Union have now managed to record just a single victory in their last four MLS matchup.
    • Philadelphia’s defeat earlier in the week was their first loss in any of their previous nine matchups.
    • New York have won each of their last four straight MLS matchups at The Red Bull Arena.
    • Friday’s hosts have scored over 1.5 goals in each of those four home victories.

    Conclusion

    Managing to make what was a hugely impressive return to winning ways with a 2-1 victory away at Orlando earlier in the week, the mood in New York’s camp should be at a real high. Glad to make a return to the Red Bull Arena in the earlier hours of Friday morning, this weekend’s hosts have only continued to shine on home soil. Winning each of their last four MLS home fixtures on the spin and bagging a brace in each of those victories, Gerhard Struber’s side should be confident of causing an upset against the defending champions. With Philadelphia suffering a 1-0 loss against Nashville last time out and showing some recent issues on the road, we’re backing a home victory here.

    Verdict: New York Red Bulls win

    Best Odds: 13/10

    Bookmaker: Unibet

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Tom Dunstan


    Formerly of The Independent, Tom is a freelance football and boxing journalist from Essex, England. Currently working for three online publications, Tom is a graduate of the University of Falmouth and has spent the last two years writing across Australia, New Zealand and Asia. He can be followed at @IamTomDunstan

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