Real Salt Lake managed to get a rare away victory at the weekend as they beat back to back MLS Cup finalists Seattle Sounders at CenturyLink Field, but it’s not been enough to push them back into their desired location in the MLS Western Conference.
12 games in, the hosts sit 9th in the Western Conference. However, their 16 point haul at this stage of the season isn’t a disastrous tally by any means, and they are just two points off moving into the top five. Considering they missed out on the playoffs entirely last season, you would imagine a continuation into the post season would be enough to satisfy their fans after a difficult year or so.
Real Salt Lake’s form, on the face of it, looks very uninspiring. They have won just two of their last five and lost each of the other three, but the vast majority of their problems come away from home. Back at the Rio Tinto Stadium the fans have a much better time of it, seeing their side win each of their last four games. Looking back into last season as well, the hosts have won nine of their last ten home league games, so Houston Dynamo have a big task on their hands this week.
Dynamo managed to break their duck and claim a top six spot last season, and this season it looks like they are trying to solidify their status as one of those expected playoff teams. Their 3-1 win over New York City at the weekend made it four games without defeat, leaving them 5th in the table and with games in hand on many of the teams surrounding them.
Unlike last season, they have done this on the back of a fantastic attack. The 26 goals they have scored in their 11 games so far is more than any other Western Conference side, and equal to the likes of Atlanta United, New York City, and New York Red Bulls in the Eastern Conference. At the other end they have conceded 18 times, and many of those have come on their travels.
Away from home Houston Dynamo have conceded two goals in each of their five matches so far, but have averaged two goals per game themselves too and have only lost once. In fact, both teams have scored in every one of Dynamo’s away games, and three of them have ended as 2-2 draws. Considering four of Real Salt Lake’s five home games have seen at least three goals too we think an Over 2.5 Goals and Both Teams to Score bet looks great value, along with another 2-2 correct score predictions.
Real Salt Lake Predicted Lineup: Rimando, Lennon, Glad, Fernandez, Ruiz, Herrera, Kreilach, Beckerman, Savarino, Saucedo, Baird
Houston Dynamo Predicted Lineup: Willis, Machado, Castillo, da Silva, Beasley, Alexander, Ramirez, Elis, Martinez, Quioto, Manotas
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Houston Dynamo have won three, drawn one, and lost two of their last six meetings with Real Salt Lake, with Over 2.5 Goals and Both Teams to Score landing in three of them.
Midfielder Albert Rusnak is away on international duty this week. Goalkeeper Alex Horwath, defenders Tony Beltran, Shawn Barry, and Demar Phillips, midfielder Jordan Allen, and striker Joao Plata are all injured too.
Defender Adolfo Machado has been called up to the Panama national team and will miss out here. Meanwhile, Dynamo’s injury list continues to trouble them, with defenders AJ DeLaGarza, Phillipe Senderson, George Malki, Dylan Remick, Kevin Garcia, and Jared Watts all sidelined along with midfield duo Juan Cabezas and Dawin Ceren.