New York Red Bulls at Atlanta United - Major League Soccer Odds

New York Red Bulls at Atlanta United MLS Betting

This isn’t the season that anyone wanted, but we all are trying to make the best of it. Given the constraints imposed on the country and the sports world due to the coronavirus, the MLS season has taken on a World Cup style tournament format. Teams have been split into six different groups, where they will face each other in a round-robin format to decide who goes to the knockout round. Atlanta United and the New York Red Bulls have been placed with the two Ohio teams in Group E, and the former two teams are the favorites to get out of this group.

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MLS Betting Odds at

Atlanta United -113

New York Red Bulls +273

Draw +296

Over/Under 3

Odds Analysis

All handicapping models have gone out the window given the truncated nature of the season, and we have no idea who will be in form when these two Eastern Conference behemoths clash in Orlando this weekend.

Atlanta United have a manager that is familiar with this format in Frank de Boer. The defensive-minded de Boer has changed how the Five Stripes play since taking over the club at the start of last season, and that will come in handy given the nature of the competition. This club already beat Cincinnati and Nashville back in March, and they have some exceptional playmakers in the midfield. They won’t have Tigres midfielder Jurgen Damm due to the modified transfer rules, but Ezequiel Barco is one of the best players in the league and Pity Martinez might finally be adjusting to the MLS.

The Red Bulls lost Josh Sims to Southampton earlier this week as they opted not to pick up the option on the Young Designated Player’s loan given the shortened season. This club was very much in flux at the start of the season with the departure of Bradley Wright-Phillips, Kemar Lawrence, and Derrrick Etienne, but there is still a good bit of talent on the roster. Florian Valot should be able to stay healthy given the shortened season, but Kaku must perform better after two underwhelming seasons in New York.

Key Absences

The loss of Josef Martinez for the season with a torn ACL in late February was a crucial blow to Atlanta United. Martinez had been the best striker in the league for the last two seasons with 58 goals in 63 league games, and he has been the key to everything up top for the Five Stripes. It will be very difficult to replace his production as there isn’t another No. 9 that can do what he can in the MLS.

It appears that the Red Bulls will be fully healthy for this one as Ryan Meara and Aaron Long have had ample time to recover from injuries picked up at the start of the season.

Player to Watch

Barco isn’t long for Atlanta, and this next month will likely be his last with the club. The talented 21-year-old has drawn the interest of Fiorentina and several French clubs, so he appears set to follow former teammate Miguel Almiron to Europe. Barco is probably the most talented creator in this tournament with Carlos Vela sitting out, and the burden will be on him to create offense without Martinez available.

Free Soccer Betting Pick

The draw is a great option in this game as both teams will likely exhibit a lot of rust.

Major League Soccer Odds: Atlanta United 1, New York Red Bulls 1

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