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Atlanta United vs. LAFC: Preview, Prediction & Betting Tips

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      Overview

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        Atlanta United vs. LAFC: Preview, Prediction & Betting Tips

        This Sunday, the world of Major League Soccer (MLS) will turn its gaze to an intriguing match-up between Atlanta United and Los Angeles Football Club (LAFC). As the teams prepare to lock horns, the stakes are distinctly set against a backdrop of contrasting seasons and expectations for each club.

        Date: 26/05/2024

        Kick-off time: 00:30

        Location: Mercedes-Benz Stadium

        Atlanta United find themselves in a challenging position early in the season. Positioned 11th in the Eastern Conference with only 13 points from 13 matches, the team’s performance has notably faltered. The hope at the start of the season was to build upon last year's playoff appearance, where their journey was halted by Columbus Crew in the first round. However, the current campaign suggests a regression rather than progression, casting shadows of doubt over their capability to repeat past successes.

        The side from Georgia, crowned MLS champions in 2018, have struggled to regain that form in subsequent seasons. This year, they continue to seek a formula that could reignite their former glory. Under the guidance of manager Gonzalo Pineda, the team have worked to find strategic depth and consistency, but the results have yet to align with their ambitions.

        A beacon of hope shines through Thiago Almada, the 23-year-old central midfielder and World Cup winner with Argentina. Almada stands as one of the elite players in the league, celebrated for his vision, technical skill, and ability to alter the dynamics of a game single-handedly. Alongside him, Caleb Wiley, a promising young winger, offers speed and agility, providing Atlanta with potential attacking prowess.

        Despite these talents, the collective team effort has not yet clicked into place, leaving fans and analysts alike pondering the necessary adjustments. As they face LAFC, Atlanta United will not only be playing for points but also for confidence and validation of their team's potential.

        In contrast, LAFC enter the match in a far more favourable condition. Positioned third in the Western Conference with 21 points from the same number of games, they have started the season with a strong assertion of intent. After a painful loss in last season’s MLS Cup final to Columbus Crew, LAFC have been tipped as one of the favourites for the title this year.

        Under the management of Steve Cherundolo, LAFC have displayed a compelling blend of tactical intelligence and on-field discipline. The team's robust lineup features key players like Timothy Tillman and Dénis Bouanga. Tillman, an attacking midfielder, brings creativity and game-defining moments, while Bouanga offers versatility and a tireless work rate in the midfield.

        LAFC's season so far suggests they are well-prepared to amend last year's near-miss. The team's ability to balance defensive solidity with attacking verve makes them formidable opponents. As they prepare to face Atlanta, LAFC will be keen to exploit any vulnerabilities and cement their position at the top end of the table.

        The head-to-head record between Atlanta United and LAFC adds an extra layer of intrigue to the upcoming fixture. In their four previous meetings, Atlanta have had the slight upper hand with two wins, while LAFC have secured one victory, and one game ended in a draw. These encounters have often been closely contested affairs, highlighting the competitive spirit and tactical battles expected from two clubs with their respective ambitions.

        The central midfield duel between Almada and Bouanga could be pivotal. Almada’s ability to dictate play and move forward effectively will be crucial for Atlanta if they are to penetrate LAFC’s midfield and defence. On the other side, Bouanga's role in disrupting Atlanta’s rhythm and initiating counter-attacks could set the tone for LAFC.

        Both managers might opt for tactical nuances to tilt the scale. Pineda might look to utilise Wiley’s pace on the flanks to stretch LAFC’s defence, whereas Cherundolo could emphasise maintaining possession and exploiting the transitional phases to catch Atlanta’s defence off-guard.

        As the teams prepare for Sunday's clash, the match promises not only to showcase individual talents like Almada and Tillman but also to highlight the tactical acumen of Pineda and Cherundolo. For Atlanta United, this game represents an opportunity to turn their season around and regain some much-needed confidence. For LAFC, it is another step towards their redemption journey in MLS.

        LAFC To Win

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        LAFC To Win @ 6/4
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        Both Teams To Score In 2nd Half

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        LAFC To Score 2+ Goals

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        LAFC To Score 2+ Goals @ 10/11
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        Team News

        Atlanta Team News:

        Thiago Almada is a doubt after missing the trip to Nashville with injury.

        Bartosz Slisz and Giorgos Giakoumakis, however, will be available for selection once again after serving a suspension.

        LAFC Team News:

        The visitors will be without Joshua Yaro and Eduard Lowen for this fight as the pair look set to miss out through injury.

        It's unlikely that they'll make too many changes to that XI that started in St. Louis last time out.

        Form Guide

        Atlanta are coming into this game in fairly dismal form having won just one of their last five games, while failing to win any of their last five outings in MLS. Their most recent game brought an end to a three-match losing run as they claimed a point in a 1-1 draw away at Nashville SC, where Bartosz Slisz netted an equaliser in the second half.

        Prior to that, Atlanta fell to a 1-0 defeat away at Cincinnati, a result that followed a 2-3 defeat against D.C. United where Thiago Almada got on the scoresheet from the spot in addition to an own goal from the visitors.

        Atlanta's only win in their last nine outings came in the form of a 3-0 win over Charlotte Independence, a non-MLS side, in the US Open Cup where a Daniel Ríos goal and a brace from Nick Firmino were enough to get the job done.

        That result followed a 1-2 loss at home to Minnesota United, which means Atlanta are now eight games without a win in MLS.

        In complete contrast, LAFC are in great form as they come into this one having won four of their last five games. Their latest outing was a 2-0 win away at St. Louis City, where a brace from Dénis Bouanga saw LAFC come out on top.

        That result followed a 3-0 win over Vancouver Whitecaps, which came courtesy of a brace from Cristian Olivera and Mateusz Bogusz, a result that followed a 3-1 win over Las Vegas Lights in the US Open Cup, where another Oliveira brace and a goal from Kei Kamara saw them breeze through to the next round.

        Those results were preceded by a 3-1 defeat away at San Jose Earthquakes and a 3-2 win over Portland Timbers, where Olivera, Bouanga and Tim Tillman bagged the goals.

        Footy Accumulators Prediction

        LAFC are both a better side than Atlanta and are in better form so it's hard to imagine the home side getting much from this one. A draw would be an excellent result for Atlanta but even that seems unlikely, as we're backing the visitors to take another three points in their quest towards an eventual MLS Cup. Atlanta 1-2 LAFC.

        Don’t forget to check out the rest of our previews, tips and offers for this weekend’s action. Footy Accumulators is the #1 football betting site for the latest on betting in the UK - download the Betting Hub app for more!

        Header logoMLS - Eastern Conference

        PosClubPWDLGDPTS
        8
        Team logoNashville
        18585-123
        9
        Team logoAtlanta United
        18558+220
        10
        Team logoPhiladelphia
        18486+220
        Last updated 20/06/2024

        Header logoMLS - Western Conference

        PosClubPWDLGDPTS
        1
        Team logoSalt Lake
        191072+1837
        2
        Team logoLos Angeles
        181044+1134
        3
        Team logoGalaxy
        19973+934
        Last updated 20/06/2024

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