Last Updated on November 2, 2022 3:15 pm by Erwin Noguera
We have reached the end of the MLS campaign of 2022, and we get ready to witness both Conference Champions as they fight it off to get the title of League Champion.
After everything was said and done, the two teams that lead each conference in the regular season managed to dominate during the playoffs, and now, we get a clash of the top dogs to wrap things up.
The Philadelphia Union (Eastern Conference) and LAFC (Western Conference) are getting ready to meet for the last time this season, and everyone should be excited about it.
Saturday, November 5th at the Banc of California Stadium in Los Angeles
Philadelphia Union +330
Los Angeles FC -129
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Why Bet the LAFC
Not only did the LAFC team manage to make it into the fight for the MLS Cup for the first time in their brief history, but they did so in a dominant fashion and are also going to be the Hosts of the encounter.
The Black & Gold will face a Philadelphia Union team that’s got three Cup final appearances – all in the US Open Cup from 2014-18 – but have yet to bring home hardware beyond the 2020 Supporters’ Shield.
These have been two of the handful of the best teams in the league over the past five years and were unquestionably the two best in MLS this year, so nothing about this matchup feels particularly surprising.
The Californians come from getting 67 points in the regular phase with a goal difference of +28. They are generally an aggressive team more than an organized one as, with 9 losses, they were just one defeat short of the double digits. They rely heavily on their great offense but is hard to not do so with names like Carlos Vela and Gareth Bale.
LAFC spent a good chunk of late summer on the struggle bus but, as talented veteran teams often do, they kicked into high gear with a few weeks left, secured their second Shield in four years, then survived an El Trafico in the West Semis before doing murder upon poor Austin FC in the West Final.
Why Bet the Philadelphia Union
For Philly, what they did over the second half of the season, and then what they did over the second half of their Eastern Conference Final win over last year’s MLS Cup winners, NYCFC, makes it feel like they, too, are playing for history.
The Union is a team built from the back, as their 26 goals against are the best of the league by far and showcase a solidity that is not that common in this league. However, they were never a team over-reliant in a low-block, as they were also the team with the most goals in their favor with 72. If there is a stain in their records is the number of draws. All this lead to one conclusion: they either destroy you or get comfortable with a draw.
Philadelphia is a usual guest in the post-season, but one that has never succeeded there. This is their chance to change that.
Free LAFC vs. Philadelphia Betting Pick
This will be a showcase of two of the best goal-scorers in the league: Daniel Gazdag (23) vs. Cristian Arango (18). Their numbers showcase the offensive output of their teams, who were two of the most dangerous in the league.
In the creativity department, whatsoever, Carlos Vela stands out, as he got 11 assists, which summed with his 12 goals total 23 goals contributions along the season. In the defensive department, the most impressive name between the two is, definitely, Andre Blake, the best American goalkeeper at the moment, who had some world-class performances to remember.
The only meeting of the season between the two teams, a 2-2 draw in LA back on May 7, showed their impressive parity.
The odds strongly favor LAFC with -129, contrary to the +330 of Philadelphia. If we look at the numbers, two main reasons for this stand out: the dominant display of the Californian team in the second part of the season and the locality. Los Angeles becomes a behemoth in their home ground, with 13 wins, 2 draws, and 2 losses through the season. It is hard to not support the Union in the search for their first MLS trophy, but we cannot see them winning.
We go for a victory for LAFC.