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MLS Predictions, Odds Week 5: RSL vs St Louis & More MLS Picks

Ryan Metivier

by Ryan Metivier in Soccer News

Mar 24, 2023 · 2:31 PM PDT

St. Louis City SC forward Tomas Ostrak (7) reacts after scoring a goal against the San Jose
Mar 18, 2023; St. Louis, Missouri, USA; St. Louis City SC forward Tomas Ostrak (7) reacts after scoring a goal against the San Jose Earthquakes during the second half at CITYPARK. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Le-USA TODAY Sports
  • 28 teams will take to the pitch for MLS Week 5 on Saturday, March 25
  • There are long lists of MLS players missing for international duty in Week 5
  • See all of the MLS odds plus our top MLS predictions for Week 5 here

Our MLS Week 5 picks get started with the first game on the card when Portland hosts the LA Galaxy at 4:30 pm EST Saturday. They’ll conclude with a late match between San Jose and Toronto and include more MLS predictions from the games inbetween.

Week 4 saw 44 goals scored combined and Overs going 9-5. And while we usually like betting goals in MLS, they just didn’t fall in the right games. Last week was rough. No way around it. 0-4, leaving us at 5-9, -4.65 units on the season.

Scoring could be down this week with several players out (more on that below), so we’re going with a mixed bag of Overs and Unders in our MLS picks below.

MLS Odds Week 5

Matchup Home Draw Away
Portland Timbers vs LA Galaxy +125 +225 +205
Inter Miami CF vs Chicago Fire +100 +240 +260
DC United vs New England Revolution +115 +235 +215
Columbus Crew vs Atlanta United +150 +240 +165
Charlotte FC vs New York Red Bulls +155 +220 +165
Philadelphia Union vs Orlando City SC -155 +285 +390
Sporting KC vs Seattle Sounders +115 +235 +220
Minnesota United vs Vancouver Whitecaps +115 +250 +210
Austin FC vs Colorado Rapids -175 +310 +425
Houston Dynamo vs NYCFC +135 +220 +190
Nashville SC vs FC Cincinnati +100 +235 +265
Real Salt Lake vs St Louis City SC -105 +250 +265
San Jose Earthquakes vs Toronto FC -125 +265 +310
LAFC vs FC Dallas -200 +320 +475

LAFC are listed as Week 5’s biggest favorites at -200 odds at home to Dallas. Philly, Austin, RSL and San Jose are also odds-on home favorites this week. MLS odds from March 24 at DraftKings Sportsbook.


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MLS Predictions Week 5

This is a dicey week when it comes to MLS best bets. With a bevy of international competitions taking place there are a lot of players missing from many teams. Be sure to check the international call-up list and the starting lineups on Saturday before making your bets.

The lists are long but in summary: Atlanta is missing a lot, including Thiago Almada. Austin is down another defender, Charlotte is out Karol Swiderski, a Colorado team that already can’t score is out Diego Rubio and Darren Yapi, Miami is out Josef Martinez, LAFC Denis Bouanga, the Galaxy Dejan Joveljic, Minnesota nearly their entire starting lineup, seven players each for Orlando and Philly, a host of starters for Seattle, a mass exodus of Canadian national teamers for TFC and Andres Cubas for the Whitecaps.

There are more, but there’s a recap.

Real Salt Lake vs St Louis City SC Prediction

Real Salt Lake is next up for the surprisingly undefeated expansion side St. Louis City SC.

No one could’ve predicted that St Louis would be 4-0-0 after 3-2, 3-1, 2-1 and 3-0 wins to start the year. They are the league’s first expansion team to be undefeated after their first four games. That they’ve also scored multiple goals in each game, while only conceding four is equally impressive. St. Louis may have some lucky goals and are overachieving when it comes to xG at just 6.6 compared to 11 goals scored, but that 6.6 is still the third-highest in the league.

St Louis has put the second-most shots on target in the league, have created the third-most goal-creating actions per 90 and defensively have by far the most tackles of any team in the league with 104. The next closest is Columbus with 84. This is a hard-working team that is creating turnovers and opportunities to score.

After an initial 2-1 win in Vancouver, RSL have suffered 2-0 and 2-1 losses to Seattle and Austin in their past two. They were the team on bye last week so they’ll be coming into Week 5 fresh having been off for two weeks.

Dating back into last season RSL has now allowed a goal in each of their past eight games and in 15 of 17. They have scored themselves though in 12 of those 17. At home, they’ve scordd in 8/10 and in 25 of 28.

  • MLS Predictions: Real Salt Lake vs St Louis City SC – Both Teams to Score & Over 2.5 (+110), risk 1 unit at Bet365

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San Jose Earthquakes vs Toronto FC Prediction

It’s a late one on the West coast for Toronto (1-2-1) as they travel to San Jose (2-0-2) at 10:30 pm EST.

TFC snapped a streak of nine games dating back to last season without a win when they defeated Miami 2-0 at home. It was an encouraging sign for a team performing below expectations who were playing without Lorenzo Insigne and who got goals from two players not named Federico Bernardeschi (he did get two assists though). It was also the first clean sheet they’ve kept since August 27 (nine games).

The Earthquakes were the latest victims of St. Louis falling 3-0 on the road in Week 4. They were missing some key players and had scored in each of their previous three games.

These were two of the three worst defensive teams last season in goals allowed. Neither have looked exceptionally better so far in 2023 allowing a goal in three of their four games each. If you look at each team’s opponent final third touches, Toronto (27th) and San Jose (24th) each rank bottom six.

Both teams will be missing some key players due to international duty. For San Jose, Jamiro Monteiro (M) and Miguel Trauco (D). And for Toronto, Ayo Akinola (F), Mark-Anthony-Kaye (M), Jonathan Osorio (M) and Richie Laryea (D). The Earthquakes are also down Carlos Gruezo (M), while TFC is missing Insigne, both injured.

Last year the teams tied 2-2 in Toronto and while the missing players are a cause for concern I can still see this one being sloppy and resulting in a few goals.

  • MLS Predictions: San Jose Earthquake vs Toronto FC – Both Teams to Score & Over 2.5 (+100), risk 1 unit at DraftKings Sportsbook

MLS Week 5 Parlay Picks

Here’s a two-teamer for this weekend as part of your MLS predictions. When I first scanned the MLS Week 5 schedule, these two games stood out as potential goal-heavy games. But as the week moved on and injuries and international absences became more clear, these games may in fact be better Under bets,

Portland Timbers vs LA Galaxy Prediction

This Western Conference matchup is typically goal-heavy. The teams drew 1-1 in Los Angeles and the Galaxy won 3-1 in Portland last season. Prior to their last 1-1 draw, the Over 2.5 had cashed in 11 straight meetings.

Depsite not having a true out and out striker right now, the Timbers keep finding the scoresheet. They’ve scored a goal in 24 straight games now; the longest active streak in MLS. They have conceded though in 16 of 18. In those 18 games, both teams have scored 16 times as well. Portland also has an impressive run of scoring a goal against the Galaxy in 18 straight matches. Galaxy games have seen both teams scoring in 14 of their past 17.

The Timbers have given up the joint sixth-most shots on target in the league, but who do the Galaxy have to take advantage of that? Los Angeles have scored just twice in three games. Both of those goalscorers, Dejan Joveljic and Kelvin Leerdam are away on international duty. Meanwhile, Chicharito is still out injured.

Then you look at the Portland side and oh boy is the absentee list long.

Timbers out through injury: Felipe Mora, Sebastian Blanco, David Ayala, Dairon Asprilla, Tega Ikoba, Yimmi Chara, Christhian Paredes, Evander.

Timbers out for international duty: Juan David Mosquera.

Combine those lists together and four of the five Timbers’ players who have scored this season are all out of the lineup.

I’m hesitant to go against a 24-game scoring streak or to trust either of these defenses, but taking an alt-total Under is how I’ll look here with the Under 3.5.

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Columbus Crew vs Atlanta United Prediction

It’s been a mixed bag of results for the Crew, starting the season 1-1-2 with five goals scored and seven conceded. They fell 2-1 in New York to the Red Bulls last week, but were without an injured Cucho Hernandez, who will again miss out this weekend with a knee injury. They’ll also be without Lucan Zelarayan who’s away with Armenia.

They’ll be hosting one of the hottest teams in MLS this weekend in Atlanta United. The Five Stripes are 3-1-0, having scored a league-high 11 goals, while only conceding three. However, the early frontrunner for league MVP Thiago Almada (4G, 4A) will be away with Argentina. So too will new DP striker Giorgos Giakoumakis with Greece. Atlanta actually has seven players away on international duty. They will still have Caleb Wiley and Luiz Araujo who’ve scored three and two goals respectively.

Atlanta gets the ball in dangerous scoring areas all the time. They rank second in both attacking third and penalty area touches. One of these players could still find the back of the net for a scoring prop, but there’s no doubt they’ll be missing some key pieces.

Scorelines last year were 2-2 in Columbus and a 2-1 Crew win in Atlanta. With so many missing star players I’m banking on no more than that second scoreline and taking an alt-total of Under 3.5.

  • MLS Parlay Picks: Portland Timbers vs LA Galaxy Under 3.5 / Columbus Crew vs Atlanta United Under 3.5 (-111); risk 1 unit at Caesars Sportsbook

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