MLS Picks And Parlays: Portland Heads to Colorado in MLS Western Conference Clash
by Matt Cash @MattCashCapper
The Portland Timbers are locked in a tight race with Sporting KC, Houston and FC Dallas for first place in the MLS Western Conference. Just three points separate the four teams as the season rounds the corner into summer.
They’ve won two in a row heading into Saturday night’s clash with Colorado Rapids.
That includes a huge 2-0 win over Dallas last week which helped to tighten the standings.
Fanendo Adi broke a five-game goalless drought by bagging the brace. Combined with Diego Valeri the two form one of the more potent attacking duos in MLS.
Portland will be missing some key players for this game as David Guzman is suspended after accumulating two yellow cards in the last game. They are also missing key defenders in Liam Ridgewell and Roy Miller who both suffered injuries in the Dallas game.
Good thing for Portland they do have an experienced bench to draw from including Lawrence Olum and Amobi Okugo.
Portland, just like the rest of their Western Conference brethren have been much better at home than on the road. They started strong, winning two of their first three road games of the season, but have since lost three and drawn one of their most recent four. That includes their current three-game losing streak on the road where they’ve managed to score just once.
Colorado is looking to get out of the Western Conference cellar with a home win on Saturday night. They’ve played just 13 games, two less than Portland and tied for fewest in the league and have just 13 points. But they’ve won their last two games including a victory over first place Sporting KC and Columbus who are sitting in a playoff spot in the East.
They have the most anemic offense in the West with just 12 goals scored in 13 games.
The Rapids didn’t suffer any new injuries in their most recent games, but they are dealing with some long-term ones on the back end. Both Axel Sjoberg and Kortne Ford are out.
Colorado did play a US Open Cup game earlier this week and pulled off an impressive comeback win over OKC Energy, but they did play some of the starters in the match.
The Rapids have now won their last three home games and have conceded just one goal in those efforts.
Cash It In: Colorado are +140 favorites, Portland +205 underdogs and the draw sits at +220. This is a series that’s been dominated by Portland over the years with a 4-2-1 record versus Colorado in their last seven. That makes them an excellent underdog pick even though Colorado has been strong at home of late and Portland has struggled on the road. Portland 1-0.