MLS Best Bet of the Week
By: Cody Gehlhausen
Major League Soccer returns at the weekend, and we will see two new teams join the fray to compete for the MLS Cup. One of the new teams, Inter Miami, will travel across the country to face off against Los Angeles FC.
Miami were granted an expansion team into the MLS six years ago, and co-owner David Beckham will see his efforts come to fruition on Sunday. His promise to bring in a European star has failed, but Miami have managed to build a team with seasoned veterans and South American talents. The star player of this side will unquestionably be Rodolfo Pizzaro who just recently arrived from Monterrey. Liga MX players do not typically cross the border into the MLS, but Pizzaro feels he can realize his dream move to Europe using America as a stepping-stone. Pizzaro is a classic number ten that will play just behind their forward, Robbie Robinson. Miami will rely heavily on their new midfielder in this match.
LAFC come into the 2020 campaign as hungry as any other team in the league. Last years side, in my opinion, was the best team MLS has ever seen. The Black and Gold scored eighty-five goals last season while allowing just thirty-seven over thirty-four matches. A goal differential of forty-eight goals over one season is insane. Ex Arsenal player and star forward Carlos Vela set California ablaze in the last campaign netting a league record thirty-six goals while contributing eleven assists. Although LAFC dominated the regular season, the Seattle Sounders cut their championship aspirations short in the Western Conference Championship. Manager Bob Bradley will be laser focused this season with the MLS Cup in his sights.
It will be baptism by fire for Inter Miami as they travel two thousand seven hundred miles to Los Angeles in their first ever MLS match. Compile that with the fact that LAFC may just be better than they were last year and it is a recipe for disaster for Miami. LAFC will look at this match as an opportunity to start the new season on a high note. I expect Bob Bradley to attack Miami skipper Diego Alonso’s men relentlessly for ninety minutes. Miami will feature eleven players who have never played a meaningful soccer match together. Two of those starters were playing college soccer just a year ago. Everything about this match aligns with a LAFC beat-down of the newcomers. I see this match finishing 5-0 to the Black and Gold of Los Angeles.