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Our Pick: Seattle Sounders to win
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The Seattle Sounders are unbeaten in the last six league games. They have won twice and drawn the rest. It is an impressive run, considering that five out of those six games were away from home, and both of Seattle’s wins came on the road – against Austin FC and the Colorado Rapids.
The LA Galaxy have won just one out of their last six games. On a more positive note, the club has only lost one out of their last six matches because four games have ended in draws. Two of those draws have come in the last two games, which have been quite entertaining for the neutrals.
Every game that the LA Galaxy play is a must-win for them if they wish to clinch a playoff spot. However, victory in the upcoming game against the Sounders is unlikely. The hosts are quite robust and will certainly bag all three points on Wednesday.
Including a couple of US Open Cup fixtures and multiple playoff faceoffs, these two clubs have met 42 times since 2010. The scale is evenly balanced as both teams have won 15 games each, and 12 games have ended in a stalemate.
In the reverse fixture at the Dignity Health Sports Park in April this year, goals from Jordan Morris and Leo Chu helped the Sounders clinch all three points. The two clubs also met in the US Open Cup this season. LA Galaxy emerged victorious with a 3-1 scoreline in that match.
The regular MLS season is only a few games away from its conclusion, so the top clubs are gearing up for the mercurial playoffs. In the initial phase of the current season, the Seattle Sounders were among the top favorites to compete for their third title.
However, the club lost momentum midway through the season but survived the hiccup and recovered well. Quite a few vulnerabilities were exposed during that tricky phase, and opponents could capitalize on it again in the playoffs unless the Sounders work on them.
In the last match against Nashville SC, the Sounders were without their star striker, Jordan Morris, who was unavailable due to personal reasons. Heber replaced the club’s top scorer and could not extend his two-goal tally.
Meanwhile, Morris was in the race for the Golden Boot at one point this season, but he has only scored two goals in the last 15 league games, keeping his tally at just ten goals so far.
While the attacking concerns are piling up for the Seattle Sounders, a youngster has provided a massive boost in defense for the club. In his last two starts for the Sounders, Reed Baker-Whiting has been spectacular at left-back.
He provided the assist for the Seattle Sounders’ equalizer against FC Dallas and then won the most duels against Nashville SC and was the player of the match.
After dropping points in the last two games, the LA Galaxy are dangling in the 13th spot of the Western Conference table. However, the gap to the final playoff qualification spot is only six points, and the visitors do have a game in hand.
Goalscoring has not been an issue for the LA Galaxy in recent games, as they have scored ten in the last three. The defense has surely been a concern because they conceded nine in the process. The club must fix that if they wish to qualify for the playoffs this season.
The LA Galaxy were dealt a massive blow when their talisman, Riqui Puig, was ruled out for a few weeks due to an ankle injury. The Spanish midfielder scored four goals in seven games after the Leagues Cup to get LA Galaxy’s season back on track.
However, the 24-year-old is expected to be out for at least a couple more weeks and the visitors will have a tough time filling the void left by Puig in midfield.
Last season, the LA Galaxy picked up 22 points from 17 away games during the regular season. They won six matches, drew four, and lost seven.
The team is in worse shape this year as it has accumulated 12 points in 15 away games. LA Galaxy have won just two games on the road so far, drawing six and losing seven in the process.
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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