Portland Timbers vs. Columbus Crew SC MLS Pick, Odds, Prediction - 3/6/16
Columbus Crew SC (0-0) vs. Portland Timbers (0-0)
MLS Soccer: Sunday, March 6, 2016 at 4:30 pm (Providence Park)
The Line: -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
TV: ESPN, ESPN Deportes, MLS LIVE
The Portland Timbers and Columbus Crew SC open the season Sunday at Providence Park.
The Portland Timbers enter this season as the team to beat after winning the MLS Cup last year. The Portland Timbers return all of their key players from a year ago and look to make back-to-back playoff appearances for the first time. Fanendo Adi returns after leading Portland with 16 goals, Diego Valeri had eight assists and Darlington Nagbe had 50 shots. Defensively, Adam Kwarasey returns at goalkeeper after pitching 13 shutouts and coming away with 80 saves. The Portland Timbers were one of the top defensive teams last year, allowing 39 goals in 34 games. The Portland Timbers are 2-2-2 in their last six regular season home games.
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The Columbus Crew SC look to get revenge from last season after losing to the Timbers in the MLS Cup. The Columbus Crew SC have been crazy consistent, making the playoffs in six of the last eight seasons. Kei Kamara returns after leading Columbus with 22 goals, Ethan Finlay had 13 assists and Federico Higuain had 28 shots on goal. Columbus is a great offensive team that scored 58 goals in 34 games last season. Defensively, Steve Clark returns at goalkeeper after pitching six shutouts and producing 114 saves. The Columbus Crew SC have won five of their last six regular season road games.
The Portland Timbers have beaten the Columbus Crew SC in the last two meetings and is 2-1-2 in the last five matchups overall. Columbus hasn’t beaten Portland since July of 2013. The last three meetings between these two teams has produced at least three goals.
This should be a hell of a game considering emotions will be running high after how last year ended. However, Portland’s defense has the advantage and being at home also helps. I like the Timbers to win this matchup.