Editor’s Note: Ben Ferree joined Massive Report on loan from Pro Soccer USA until the end of the MLS season, bringing his regular gambling column to our pages. Ferree brought his Best Bets column to Massive Report for the MLS is Back Tournament and now will carry it over to the regular season. Enjoy!
So, the first week of Major League Soccer’s return to the regular season didn’t go great. But we know more now, we learn and we turn the corner to profitability with a nice weekend set of MLS games. After players around the league elected to protest games mid-week, the games scheduled for Friday, Saturday and Sunday are all expected to be played. We’ll work under that assumption until we know more.
New to betting? Odds are expressed around the number 100, meaning $100 being wagered. For example, if a bet is listed as +200, it means betting $100 would win you $200. Conversely, a bet listed as -200 would mean you have to bet $200 to win $100.
Atlanta United against Orlando City SC over 2.5 goals scored, -134
Orlando’s offense looks like the real deal with Nani running the show. The defensive has only tossed one shutout this regular season, and Atlanta is much improved simply by removing the team’s manager. Look for this game to hit the over and hit it early.
Philadelphia Union to beat D.C. United, -150
I love the Union roster, and thought in preseason they were very underrated a strong team. I was right! I thought the same thing about D.C. I was wrong! The capital city team is struggling while Philly is firing on all cylinders and should coast to another win.
Columbus Crew SC to beat FC Cincinnati, -118
In the win against the Chicago Fire, Caleb Porter didn’t like what he saw and thought the team had a lot to improve on despite the big victory. Following up that performance with a loss is a surefire way to get yourself some extra training. Add in the derby factor, and the Crew will be highly motivated to get back into the win column this week. Lucas Zelarayan may still be out, and Cincinnati will be just as motivated as Columbus, given a 3-0 beating to the Fire earlier this week, but the talent disparity is still too large. The Crew is 6-0-0 in the team’s last six games after a loss or a draw. Lucky number seven is coming up.
Lock of the Week: Portland Timbers to beat Real Salt Lake, -118
After the midweek game postponements, RSL owner Dell Loy Hansen said some things that made people upset, including players on his own team who are now threatening not to play. This match was hard enough for Salt Lake before that. The off-field distractions are the nail in the coffin against the Timbers.
Profit if every bet is correct: $310.70
Profit to date: -$209.10
Picks Record: 1-3
Lock of the Week Record: 0-1