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Sporting Kansas City vs. Philadelphia Union MLS Predictions

Both Sporting Kansas City and the Philadelphia Union are fighting hard to stay atop the Eastern Conference in the MLS this year, and with the number of fixtures getting smaller and smaller, each match has a ton more on the line. These two teams will meet up on Friday night at Livestrong Park in the KC.

One look at the MLS standings shows just how nervy this fixture could turn out to be. Heading into Wednesday night’s three games on the MLS schedule, Kansas City and Philadelphia are both in positions to take automatic qualifying spots into the postseason. Sporting is one point off of the Columbus Crew for first place in the division, while the Union are a point behind Sporting.

However, both of these teams are looking behind them as well. The Houston Dynamo have 39 points to tie Philadelphia, the New York Red Bulls are just three points back, and DC United is five behind but have two games in hand. All six of those teams in the East clearly won’t be making the postseason. Out West, the Los Angeles Galaxy, Seattle Sounders FC, and Real Salt Lake all virtually have postseason bids on lockdown, and FC Dallas and the Colorado Rapids both know that they are in good shape as well with more points than anyone else in the East has.

That really just leaves two playoff spots for the teams that don’t finish in the Top 3 slots in the East, and the Portland Timbers (36 points), Chivas USA (31 points), and San Jose Earthquakes (29 points with two games in hand) aren’t out of it yet either.

Sebastien Le Toux leads the Union with seven goals and six assists this year, and he has three of those strikes in the team’s last three matches. Philadelphia finally overturned a string of eight straight matches without a victory by beating the table topping Crew 1-0 at home last week, the biggest win of the season to date that it has had. After allowing four goals to the New England Revolution in the first game of a three game home stand, the Union wrapped things up with back to back shutouts, though they were only able to claim four points from the two matches.

Kansas City has been one of the generally higher scoring teams in the MLS this year, averaging a total of 2.76 goals per game combined. Both Kei Kamara and Omar Bravo had eight goals apiece to lead the club.

However, it was Teal Bunbury who really came up large in the team’s last home match, scoring twice to put away the Dynamo 3-0. That was the end of a wild nine match home stretch for Sporting after having to play its first 10 matches on the road thanks to venue issues. In that stretch, it went a very lucrative 5-2-2, and its losses were of no shame to Seattle and Dallas. A 2-2 draw against the Los Angeles Galaxy was a sturdy result to boot. Needless to say, the Union have their work cut out for them.

These two teams played to a scoreless draw on June 22nd in the City of Brotherly Love. Now, Sporting is favored by a 1/2 goal at -0.5 (-105), with the ‘total’ set at a flat 2.5 at Bet365.

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