The MLS weekend begins deep into the early hours of Saturday morning when the Western Conference is in the spotlight when the Vancouver Whitecaps take on Real Salt Lake in a big match for both sides.
The two teams occupy the final two spots in the playoff places in the Western Conference heading into the match and they have the chance to steal a march on the rest of the teams in the west with a win here.
After a fairly bright start to the season it has started to go wrong for the Vancouver Whitecaps in big style and they will be desperate for a result here. They have lost their last three with the big failure coming last week when they were torn apart by Sporting Kansas City in a 6-0 drubbing. Admittedly Vancouver had two sent off but that was still something of a shellacking.
While shipping six is a big concern for the Whitecaps, with nine men that is possible. A bigger issue that is forming is a lack of goals whenever Kei Kamara is not in the side. They have barely scored this season when he hasn’t been on the pitch and if they are to achieve their goals this term they need to rectify that situation.
Real Salt Lake
I would imagine when the season began that if you had offered Real Salt Lake three wins and a draw from their opening seven matches they would have taken that. The three wins have been a positive but unfortunately for them they have followed the two they have played a match afterwards so far with a defeat so they will want to back up last week’s success over the Colorado Rapids.
The concern for Real Salt Lake is when they lose they often get battered. They have shipped five against Los Angeles FC, three in Toronto, who have barely scored a goal all season apart from that and four in New York so when they are competitive they get over the line. When they are not they get blown away.
Vancouver Whitecaps will be without the two suspended players who were sent off last week. They are Yordy Reyna and Efrain Juarez. Jordon Mutch is questionable while the indications are that Kei Kamara is not fit to feature.
Real Salt Lake head to Canada without Jordan Allen and Tony Beltran while Demar Phillips, Marcelo Silva and Luke Mulholland are among those who are only rated questionable with injuries that they are carrying.
This isn’t really a betting proposition if I am honest. I say that because Real Salt Lake can’t seem to string two performances together while Vancouver Whitecaps go into the match off the back of a 6-0 hiding and are missing too many players to offer up any confidence especially having lost their last three.
If Kei Kamara was playing then I might have chanced the Whitecaps as they are a decent side with him in their ranks but he isn’t playing and with value on the skinny side anywhere in this match it just feels like one to leave alone.