The top spot in Group C is on the line this Wednesday. Real Salt Lake, Minnesota United FC, and Sporting Kansas City all have a chance to win the group and earn an easier draw in the knockout round as RSL and MNUFC have four points and Sporting KC are sitting on three points. Minnesota United have the easiest matchup of the group as the Loons face the winless Colorado Rapids, but the Rapids would love to play spoiler after losing their two previous games.
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MLS Betting Odds at BookMaker.eu
Minnesota United FC +112
Colorado Rapids +205
Over/Under 2.5 and 3
Minnesota was incredibly fortunate to win its first match against Sporting Kansas City. The Loons were down 1-0 and hadn’t created much offense until the referee showed a very questionable red card to Sporting KC goalkeeper Tim Melia in the 74th minute. That forced Sporting KC to scramble, as they played the rest of the match with 10 men and backup goalkeeper Richard Sanchez in net. MNUFC were held at bay until extra time when a Khiry Shelton own goal knotted the game at one apiece, and the Loons were over the moon after Kevin Molino scored just before the final whistle. It was a very undeserved three points, but Minnesota were gleeful to grab them.
The Loons offense was listless in their second game against Real Salt Lake. Minnesota United FC could only muster a handful of shots and their biggest threats were a couple of half chances. However, the back line held firm without Ike Opara for the second straight match, so that’s a very positive development.
Colorado has no chance of advancing after losing to Real Salt Lake and Sporting Kansas City in this competition. The Rapids were blanked 2-0 by RSL in their opener, and they were completely innocuous on the attack in that game. They only mustered three shots and failed to put a shot on frame in the defeat.
They fared better against Sporting KC on Friday, but they surrendered a 1-0 lead and went on to lose 3-2. Kellyn Acosta opened the scoring in the sixth minute, but Danny Wilson and Jack Price were shown red cards and that led to Sporting KC taking a 2-1 lead while up two men. Somehow Jonathan Lewis tied the match, yet it wasn’t enough as Graham Zusi provided the game winner in added time.
It hasn’t been easy for Minnesota to play without the reigning MLS Defender of the Year, but the Loons have made it work. Ike Opara was the best center back in the league last year, and his offensive impact has been missed too. Opara would create chances on the counter, so the team has had to find other ways to spur offense.
Colorado doesn’t have Kortne Ford available due to a knee injury, and the Rapids will also be missing Wilson and Price after their red cards in the last match.
Player to Watch
Kevin Molino has looked sharp throughout the MLS is Back Tournament. Molino works well in space, and he has done a good job of finding players in the middle of the field. The Loons’ inability to find offensive success has not been through a lack of effort on his part, and he could find real success against a depleted Rapids back line.
Free Soccer Betting Pick
Minnesota is the more talented and motivated squad, and that will rule the day in this match.
Major League Soccer Odds: Minnesota United FC 2, Colorado Rapids 1
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