Major League Soccer 2023 season, Thursday, 01.06.2023
At the end of the first leg, it comes to the duel between the leader Cincinnati and New York City in the Eastern Conference.
While Cinci has built up a safe points cushion with a five-point difference, NY is only in 11th place.
With a two-point gap to Montreal, the play-off places are not far away for New York, but they still need to win something to prevent the gap from widening.
Although Cincinnati is the league leader, the bookmakers are not convinced that the first team in the Eastern Conference will win.
However, I believe in my New York City Cincinnati forecast that the visitors are not the clear underdogs and will definitely create chances.
Nevertheless, in my analysis I bet on an even match and goals on both sides at odds of around 1.75 (Bet-at-Home).
Cincinnati, it seems, is seamlessly following up on last season and has the best chances of making the playoffs again this year.
With 33 points and only one loss against St. Louis, Cincinnati is hardly beatable at the moment. Nevertheless, Chris Albright’s team is the underdog in this duel with a value of around 3.30 at the bookmakers.
This could also be due to the fact that New York usually plays for the top places. However, the eleventh-placed team in the table, which is the favourite in this duel at around 2.09, is in a real crisis.
Only one point from the last five games currently means no play-off place for New York, which has regularly finished in the top third of the table in recent years.
There is a lot of sand in the gears, especially on the offensive side. With only 16 goals, NY currently has one of the worst offensive lines in the league, scoring more than one goal in only one of the last six league games.
Still, at least the home form gives hope that New York will return to previous performances in the coming weeks.
Because the dip in form is unusual for the 2021 champions. Before the losing streak, New York had only one defeat from eight league games.
In front of their home fans, however, Manchester City’s sister club suffered their first defeat of the season against Philadelphia last matchday.
Before that, the team celebrated four wins from five games, including against the current second-place team from Nashville and the third-place team from the Western Conference, namely Dallas.
Therefore, this duel will not be a foregone conclusion for Cincinnati either. The top of the table is currently in top form with five wins in a row and a place in the next round of the US Open Cup, but Cincinnati has also stumbled away from home on a number of occasions.
Although the most recent win was a 1-0 compulsory victory against the second-last team in the Western Conference, it was also only the second in the past seven league games.
With one loss and three draws in the other seven games, Cincinnati left some important points in the fight for the playoffs, which could still make the difference at the end of the regular season.
Nevertheless, the lead in the standings is no coincidence. With 10 wins on the season, the team is chasing its winning record from last season.
Last year, Cincinnati won 12 games and was only eliminated in the semi-finals of the playoffs. Much of the reason for the current run of ten wins is defensive.
After Nashville and New York Red Bull, the league leader has the third-best defence in the conference with 14 goals against.
So far, the team has won six of its 14 games to zero. With New York City’s offence looking anything but dangerous of late, bookmaker Bwin Sportwetten is not expecting more than one goal and is offering odds of around 1.66 for less than two goals.
In the US Open Cup a few weeks ago, this bet would have hit the mark. With a 0:1 defeat, New York was somewhat surprisingly eliminated from the cup.
Interesting: Cincinnati has not won a single league match in eight meetings.
However, New York did not manage more than a draw in the last two duels, which shows that Cincinnati is now an opponent on a par.
The past also showed that this duel could be exciting. In only two of the eight meetings did New York win by zero.
In the other games, however, not only did both teams score, but with the exception of the 1-1 draw last year, there were always more than two goals to celebrate.
Nevertheless, with a value of around 1.93 for at least three goals, the online bookmakers do not expect a high-scoring match.
Summary and Prediciton: However, I believe that New York will turn the tables. After all, before the losing streak, the division elf was well on its way to the playoffs with just one loss from eight league games.
Cincinnati, on the other hand, is once again playing a very good season, winning all of their last five games in a row, but also dropping a few points away from home.
New York, on the other hand, has shown much better performances in front of their home crowd than in other stadiums this season.
In addition, Cincinnati has never won against the Capitals, so I have a lot of confidence in New York.
However, as this clash has been very even in the past few years and the last one ended in a 1-1 draw, I’m betting on goals from both teams in this game as well.