A very entertaining weekend in the MLS 2023 campaign concludes on Sunday night when three more matches take place on an evening where we could learn a lot about who will or won’t be competing in the playoffs.
As ever, all three matches are live on the MLS Season Pass on Apple TV while Apple TV subscribers get one of them as part of their package. If you don’t subscribe you can catch all three live on the bookmaker streams.
New York City FC vs Toronto FC (18.00)
The first of the triple header of matches on Sunday comes from Red Bull Arena where New York City FC are on show around 18 hours later than they were due to be because of an issue with a water main in this part of the city. They host a Toronto FC who could probably have done without the delay given their lack of anything tangible to play for.
This match is all about New York City. They know that a win here will take them into the playoff zone but they would still be sitting ducks having played more games than anyone else in the lower part of the Western Conference table. The home side will know this is a match they just can’t afford to slip up in with Toronto still winless on their travels this season and off the back of being given the runaround from an Inter Miami side which only had Lionel Messi in it for 20 minutes. I expect a home win here but there is enough danger in the Toronto attack to cause problems if they fancy the job but they are hard to rely on despite that. I’m in no rush to back NYCFC to cover a large handicap though when winning is the only aim.
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Orlando City SC vs Inter Miami (00.30)
The pick of the matches on Sunday night is the middle of the three where Orlando City SC will look to pull away from the chasing pack in the race for second spot in the Eastern Conference when they host an Inter Miami side for whom the big matches keep on coming.
Miami have six matches left to overcome a five point deficit between them and the playoff spots, so a win here reduces that to two but they will be well aware that they have a cup final to look forward to on Wednesday night. We already know that Lionel Messi and Jordi Alba have been ruled out of this match but it remains to be seen just how many star players Tata Martino does risk with that final in mind. The one thing that we do know about Miami is under Martino they are not just all about Lionel Messi. The likes of Josef Martinez, Leo Campana, Ben Cremaschi and Robert Taylor have all been rejuvenated and I expect the visitors to carry a goal threat. It does have to be said that on their travels especially they look like shipping plenty of goals. Orlando have bagged 13 in their last four home matches so they are likely to be a real threat. Throw in the Florida rivalry and this feels like a game full of goals. I like over 3 here.
Austin FC vs LA Galaxy (02.30)
The final match of the weekend comes from Q2 Stadium where Austin FC will host the LA Galaxy with both teams very much looking for the same thing – three points to keep their playoff hopes alive.
These two start the night five and six points off of the playoffs although the Galaxy do at least have this match as their game in hand, but either way whoever loses this one will probably be able to kiss goodbye to any hopes they have of extending their season. That could make for one of those exciting and wacky MLS matches, the like we have already seen in a couple of places in the MLS this weekend but relying on Austin to drive their end of the deal in a shootout isn’t really a position I want to be in. I’ll watch this with the intention of getting on goals but I think I’ll see how both line up and begin the game before I commit to any bet.
Back Orlando City vs Inter Miami – Over 3 goals for a 3/10 stake at 2.00 with Bet365