Saturday, August 21, 13:00 EST
Online sports betting never quite reaches the high it does when September rolls around, with so many exciting leagues starting up, while others near a dramatic end. You can bet on NFL as football is in preseason form and nears opening day with the New Orleans Saints versus the Minnesota Vikings. Meanwhile, baseball nears the playoffs and MLB betting is available on a daily basis.
As Premier League soccer begins in England and Europe gears up for another season of exciting matches, Major League Soccer is in the second half of the season in North America, with many exciting games to be played as the playoffs near.
An tough Eastern Conference showdown takes place Saturday afternoon in Toronto as the New York Red Bulls visit the Toronto FC in Southern Ontario. New York and Toronto are two and three respectively in the table, separated by four points.
After losing to New York less than two weeks ago, Toronto can ill afford to drop another three points; doing so would surely put them out of contention for second position. However, the Red Shirts are at home at BMO Field, where they have been a drastically different team than when they are on the road.
Toronto is a team that in nine road games has only earned four points: one draw and one victory. In the process they have been outscored 16-7. However, at home they are unbeaten in team games, winning six and drawing four. In fact, only Real Salt and Toronto have yet to lose on home soil.
What accounts for the huge discrepancy is uncertain, especially since the team has tried to address the matter. Toronto seems to have more confidence at home, and that has translated to 14 goals scored with only five conceded.
Their last league game came against the Red Bulls, which they lost 1-0 in New York. However they beat Cruz Azul 2-1 in CONCACAF Champions play on Tuesday.
Dwayne De Rosario and Chad Barrett continue to lead the team in scoring, tallying eight and six goals respectively. While at home, Toronto has earned five blank sheets: a shutout every other match.
In order to avoid to a similar fate, New York will rely on the scoring ability of Juan Pablo Angel, who leads the team with 11 goals. Joel Lindpere has two, and scored the lone goal against Toronto in the previous match.
The Red Bulls are in a bit of a rut, with the victory over Toronto their only triumph in seven matches. They lost at home to a powerful Los Angeles team by a score of 1-0. To secure their second win since June, they will have to beat a team that has yet to loss at home.
Betting lines: Despite New York being ahead in the standings, Toronto should be the favourite at home. They are a great team when playing in front of their fans, and will keep pace with New York in the table by earning an important three points. Toronto returns the favour to New York, winning 1-0 at home.