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After resuming the MLS campaign after the mid-season break, Minnesota United have secured some decent results that have helped them stay in the playoff qualification spots. Their first game after the 2023 Leagues Cup elimination was against New York City FC on the road, which they won 2-0. After that, they held title contenders Seattle Sounders to a 1-1 draw at home.
August ended with a superb win and the season’s eighth clean sheet after a 3-0 win against Colorado Rapids. However, the momentum dropped as Minnesota United were held to a 1-1 draw against San Jose Earthquakes in the last game.
The New England Revolution’s form has been topsy-turvy after the break. The club has played three games after their shock exit from the 2023 Leagues Cup. They marked their return to the domestic league with a disappointing 1-0 loss against CF Montreal. New England bounced back in the next game with a narrow 1-0 win over the New York Red Bulls.
They were on the verge of securing back-to-back league wins last weekend against Austin FC. However, the opposition pressure was too hot to handle for the New England defense, which ended up allowing a very late equalizer
Despite the odds backing the New England Revolution in this match, there are plenty of aspects that need to be looked at. Minnesota United have been labeled as the underdog in many encounters across multiple competitions this season and have emerged on top in several of those games. Hence, the most probable outcome in this encounter is a draw.
There is not a lot of history between these two sides as they have only met four times in the MLS. The record of the New England Revolution in this fixture is another reason why they are backed by such good odds. They have won three out of the four encounters.
Minnesota United’s solitary victory over the New England Revolution came in the 2018 MLS season. Christian Ramirez and Carlos Darwin Quintero scored in the first half to put the hosts in a commanding lead at the break.
Diego Fagundez pulled one back for the visitors in the second half via a penalty. After that, New England launched a few more attacks but were unable to find the back of the net as Minnesota United clinched all available points.
The last time these two teams met, an Emanuel Reynoso penalty put Minnesota United in front. However, goals from Dylan Borrero and Gustavo Bou turned the game on its head and New England ended up clinching all three points.
Minnesota United Eager To Extend Unbeaten Run
After suffering a heavy 4-1 defeat in their own backyard against Austin FC at the start of July, Minnesota United have recovered well and have not lost a single game in the MLS since then. The club has played six games after that, winning and drawing three games each.
The hosts have developed an alternate win-draw pattern in the last six games. None of their wins or draws have been consecutive during this stint. However, considering their opponents, Minnesota United have done exceptionally well.
They beat high-flying US Open Cup finalists Houston Dynamo away from home before taking a point off defending MLS champions Los Angeles FC. The hosts replicated the same outcome against Seattle Sounders and are expected to aim for the same against New England.
Despite dodging defeat at home on almost all occasions, Minnesota United have picked up more points on the road. At home, the club has lost only two out of 12 games this season. On the road, they have lost six out of 14 matches.
The major differentiating factor in these statistics is the number of draws. Despite losing just twice at the Allianz Field, Minnesota United have drawn seven games at home and managed to win just three. The hosts need to rectify this record and start converting draws to wins.
In June this year, Minnesota United signed former Norwich City hitman Teemu Pukki on a free. In his first start for the club against Houston Dynamo, the Finn got off the mark. After that, the 33-year-old played eight games in all competitions but failed to score a single goal.
That long goal drought ended a couple of weeks ago when Pukki scored against Colorado Rapids. He scored again last weekend against the San Jose Earthquakes. The drought has ended at the right time as the prolific Bongokuhle Hlongwane is out with a knee injury.
In the early stages of the season, the fight for the summit of the Eastern Conference table was neck-and-neck between New England Revolution and FC Cincinnati. However, the latter’s consistent performances helped the club establish a decent gap between first and second place.
However, the current Eastern Conference leaders have looked shaky since the resumption of the MLS and have dropped points on a couple of occasions. The New England Revolution are desperate to reduce the gap that currently stands at ten points.
New England Revolution have a game in hand and if they win against Minnesota United, the gap can be reduced to seven points with only seven league games to go. Hence, the visitors cannot afford to slip up in the upcoming matches.
Gustavo Bou has been a pivotal figure in the New England Revolution squad this season. The attacker has scored five goals and nabbed three assists in 14 appearances so far. However, the club was dealt a major blow when the Argentine suffered a leg injury.
The 33-year-old is expected to be on the sidelines for a couple more weeks. In his absence, Tomas Chancalay has shown the club his true potential. On loan from Racing Club, Chancalay has scored two goals in three appearances. Both goals came in the last game against Austin FC.
The New England Revolution will go through a truly testing period over the next three weeks as they play three consecutive away games. After facing Minnesota United, the team will travel to face Colorado Rapids next weekend.
After that, Chicago Fire FC will play host to New England before the club returns home to host Charlotte FC at the end of this month. The visitors have to work on their away form as they have only won three out of 12 games on the road this season.
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With an interest in strategy and mathematics, applying that to sports writing was the natural progression. A writer at night and the founder of a gaming company, Nikhil’s previous experience includes working with ESPN for five years. His specialization includes soccer, basketball, tennis, and esports betting. Email: [email protected]More info on Nikhil Kalro
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