An important game in MLS’ Western Conference goes off this Saturday with fifth placed LA Galaxy looking to close the gap on the teams above them. Their opponents, Portland Timbers, may be down in 12th place but it’s still relatively early days in the season and a playoff slot is very much on the line (10pm BST Saturday).
While the leading British-based online bookies are pointing to a comfortable home win, this Timbers side will be hopeful of producing an upset while there are plenty of prop bets to consider along the way.
Galaxy lead the way by some margin in the match winner betting market with all betting sites offering the hosts at odds-on. The best price on the home win currently stands at just 7/10. The draw is up next at a general 3/1 while a win for the Portland Timbers is on offer at a top price of 18/5.
Seven places separate these two sides and LA Galaxy have an eight-point advantage over Saturday’s opponents. As for the form guide, Galaxy have won each of their previous two games by convincing margins but it’s worth noting that those are their only two victories in their last five.
For Portland Timbers, coach Greg Vanney and his men have suffered four defeats in their last seven matches. However, it is worth noting that their solitary win in that time was a 7-2 demolition of Sporting Kansas City.
Overall results and immediate form suggest that the bookmakers may have got this right but, before we commit to a betting tips verdict for this MLS game preview, let’s take a look at the players who can turn the course of the game.
LA Galaxy’s former Real Madrid and Manchester United striker Javier Hernandez is the team’s leading scorer with six goals so far this season. The Mexican international would like a little more support from his teammates although fellow center forward Dejan Joveljic has scored three times in 12 games.
In the Portland Timbers’ camp, their leading scorer is a defender. In 14 games to date, Bill Tuiloma has found the net on five occasions.
First goalscorer betting has been slow to wake up since the international break but the layers that have declared odds so far put Javier Hernandez at the top of the market at 3/1. His teammate Loveljic is further back at 5/1. Moving through that market, Kevin Cabral and Sebastian Blanco are both at 6/1 while Bill Tuiloma could provide the value from among the outsiders at 10/1.
Away from the player markets, Both Teams to Score kicks off our regular look at the remaining prop bets and it’s available at 4/7 in many places. That’s quite short for a game where one side is a heavy favourite so maybe this is the day to take the ‘No’ option on BTTS at 5/4.
Total Combined Goals betting shows us that the same odds of 4/7 are listed to go Over the 2.5 line. You can push that one step further and take Over 3.5 goals which is on offer at a general 6/4. Those that feel this will be a low scoring 90 minutes can get a top price of 8/15 to go Under the 3.5 line.
This Galaxy vs Timbers preview will finish with some Correct Score suggestions and those who are looking for an emphatic win for the home side can get 11/1 on a 3-1 win for LA. A 2-1 victory in favour of Portland is available at 14/1 while the 2-2 draw is listed in most places at 12/1.
Our LA Galaxy vs Portland Timbers Betting Tips Verdict for this Preview
The gap of seven places and eight points between these two teams isn’t exactly a gaping chasm and we felt that there may have been some value in the result betting. However, when you look at Portland Timbers’ most recent results, it’s tough to look beyond the home win.
Some teams can be slow to wake up after an international break, but Galaxy have won their last two games emphatically. Three points for the hosts seems the only logical conclusion but there are better options if you don’t want those short odds in the match winner betting.
Portland Timbers look to be a struggling side and, when a defender is your top scorer, it’s a concern. For that reason we will start by taking LA Galaxy to win to Nil. You could take No on BTTS as an alternative, but our pick carries a better price.
Our second and last selection is Over 3.5 Goals. When the goal scorer markets fill up in the hours before the game, Javier Hernandez to open the scoring is another to consider but these two betting tips have a strong chance of delivering a solid overall return for this preview: