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Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Charlotte FC Prediction: Can Charlotte Make it Two Wins in a Row?

Written by: Angelo Zarra
Published March 1, 2024
10 min read

The Vancouver Whitecaps kick off their 2024 MLS campaign by hosting Charlotte FC on Saturday evening. This will be the 2nd meeting ever between these two sides with the first encounter seeing Charlotte FC defeat Vancouver 2-1 at Bank of America Stadium back in 2022.

Vancouver comes into this season as +5000 underdogs to win the 2024 MLS Cup with Vanni Sartini back at the helm for another year. If the Caps have any shot at lifting their first MLS title, they will have to find a way to elevate their game in the playoffs as they have failed to win a postseason game since 2017.

Charlotte FC on the other hand impressed the 60000 fans that showed up in their 1-0 victory at home over New York City FC in Matchday 1. At the end of 90 minutes the Crowns showed they were solid defensively and on attack showed how effective this squad can be finishing the match with a xG of 2.02 on 11 total shots.

Here, we will break down the betting odds and share our favorite picks for Vancouver vs. Charlotte.

Vancouver Whitecaps vs Charlotte FC Prediction

Whitecaps vs. Charlotte FC Betting Odds for Saturday, Mar. 2

The Whitecaps are listed as the favorites at -110 on the money line on their home pitch. The draw is +275 and Charlotte is +260 to grab all three points. Last season the Caps were a stingy club to grab a full result at BC Place, only losing three times out of 17 matches.

Charlotte will be participating in their first away affair on the season looking to improve upon last year’s mediocre away form. The club finished in the bottom half of MLS with the 19th best away record collecting 17 points in 2023.

Odds from bet365. Click the odds in the table below to place your bets and get $1,000 First Bet Safety Net or $150 in Bonus Bets.

Game result Odds
Vancouver Whitecaps -110
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Draw +275
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Charlotte FC +260
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Whitecaps vs. Charlotte Prediction

Vancouver Whitecaps

Though Vancouver was left off the week 1 MLS schedule, the club has participated in meaningful fixtures playing in the CONCACAF Champions Cup. The continental competition saw the club bow out in the two-legged affair losing to Liga MX side Tigres 4-1 on aggregate.

The Whitecaps will be looking to snap their home opener winless run at BC Place as the last successful attempt happened back in 2018. The club will be missing the gaffer Vanni Sartini on the touchline as he was slapped with a six-game suspension for multiple violations of league policy during the Whitecaps home playoff match against Los Angeles FC.

The most noticeable glaring hole this club had in 2023 was on the defensive side of the pitch. Constantly getting exploited on set pieces is a key area within the back line that will need major improvement if the Caps want to finish better than they did last year settling for sixth place in the Western Conference. Out of the 18 clubs that made the playoffs last season, Vancouver conceded the third-highest amount allowing 48 goals.

Helping in the goals allowed category, Caps keeper Yohei Takaoka will be relied upon once again as the main solid foundation at the back. The 27-year-old finished off his first MLS campaign in the upper echelon of the elite goalkeepers with 102 saves and grabbing eight clean sheets.

Up front, if the Whitecaps dynamic duo led by Brian White and Ryan Gauld carries over from 2023 marvelous form, it could spell trouble for the opposition. Between the two they found the back of the net 27 times combined and added 17 assists. The offense will flow through these two talented players if the opposition gives them room and space it will be a long night for the defenders.

Charlotte FC

The Crowns Defender Adilson Malanda scored his first career goal in MLS in the eighth minute, as Charlotte FC blanked New York City FC 1-0 to open their 2023 season. Not only did Malanda register the winning goal, but he put in man of the match performance finishing with the most tackles in the match with three and completing 88% of his passes going 30-for-34.

Kristijan Kahlina solidified himself as the backbone of Charlotte’s backend earning his 14th career clean sheet in MLS. The 31-year-old made two saves preventing NYCFC from finding any momentum to get back into the game.

With last year's leading goal-scoring Karol Swiderski making a loan move to Serie A side Hellas Verona this season, upfront there is a void on attack. Enzo Copetti will have to adopt the next-man mentality and try to duplicate Swiderski numbers and hit double digits in the goals category. In 90 minutes of action, the Argentine failed to register a shot towards the goal capped off an uninspiring performance losing the most duels in the match with six.

It was an impressive debut for luri Tavares, the youth academy product. The right winger appeared in 89 minutes of action not looking out of place in his first taste of MLS. The Cape Verde international showed he can rub shoulders with experienced players in the competition. If the opposition doesn’t keep an eye on Tavares, he’ll be finding the back of the net sooner rather than later. The 22-year-old entrance into MLS, saw him finish with two shots, hitting the woodwork once.

Dean Smith the newly appointed coach deserves as much praise as the players that took the pitch. With an impressive resume coaching the likes of Brentford, Aston Villa, and Norwich City to name a few, Smith brings valuable experience to the club. It will take time for his tactics to be instilled into the club, but for his first meeting in MLS, he got it all right. The 52-year-old manager made timely substitutions reading the game perfectly as it went on.

Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Charlotte FC - My Pick

Charlotte did cash a nice +130 money line victory last weekend, but taking on a well-rested opponent could spell trouble for them. As stated earlier the Crowns had a mid-table form when it came to away performances. On the road last year Charlotte averaged 1.24 goals scored, taking on a dangerous side in Vancouver that won’t cut it.

The Whitecaps were rock solid at BC Place in 2023. The club only suffered three defeats in the competition while racking up 35 goals on home turf. At home, they also proved to be a stout defensive unit averaging 1.18 goals against.

The backbone of this Whitecaps team is their strong home play which has proved to be the club's success in previous campaigns. This clash sets up nicely for the home side considering the travel and time zone changes the Crowns must deal with.

How to Watch Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Charlotte FC

  • When: Saturday, March.2, 6:30/7:30 P.M CT/ET

  • Where: BC Place

  • TV: Apple TV

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AUTHOR

Angelo Zarra

19 Articles

Hailing from the great white north in Canada, over the last 15 years, Angelo has been wagering on sports and, more specifically, the sport that’s in his blood, soccer. Well-versed in soccer leagues across the globe, keeping tabs on what’s happening in the world of soccer. Since 2022, Angelo has published MLS betting previews on various websites, including on Major League Soccer's official betting page for a short while. Through the power of social media, Angelo has been invited to talk soccer betting on national TV & radio on Sports Grid.

In Angelo’s free time, he can be found walking his dog and lounging at home watching any game that's on while enjoying his second favourite thing after sports: food! 

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