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Columbus Crew vs. NYCFC August 6 Betting Odds & Analysis
This has been a bizarre week for the Columbus Crew and they may be best served to check the weather forecast before hosting NYCFC this weekend. Last Saturday the Crew went on the road to North Carolina with a nine-match unbeaten streak.
After a pair of long delays, their game against Charlotte FC was abandoned with just 17 minutes played and it will be made up in October.
Then on Wednesday they came out and took an early lead on CF Montreal as Lucas Zelarayan scored inside 20 minutes. The Crew still led 1-0 and looked to be ready to extend that streak to 10 games. But lightning delayed the game in the 74th minute and late in the night after the teams went back on the field, Montreal scored twice after the 88th minute to stun the Crew 2-1.
The Crew missed out on a chance to get into the top four in the East and now they face second-place NYCFC on Saturday. Kickoff at Lower.com Field is set for 7:30 p.m. ET, streaming on ESPN+ and airing on Bally Sports Ohio. NYCFC beat the Crew 2-0 in May at Yankee Stadium but they only have one win in eight trips to Columbus and that came back in 2016.
Crew Ready to Get Back on Track
Before the loss to Montreal in the final moments, the Crew hadn’t lost in nine games. They have just two losses since the 2-0 setback at NYCFC in May. As a result they are back in the Eastern Conference playoff race with 30 points, tied for fifth with Orlando City.
The Crew got Zelarayan back on track on Wednesday with his sixth goal of the season and first non-penalty kick goal since April. He came off before the weather delay and should be fresh to go again on Saturday before the MLS All-Star Game next week in Los Angeles. Teaming Zelarayan with Cucho Hernandez and Derrick Etienne Jr. is key to the Crew staying in the playoff hunt.
Etienne has five goals and five assists while Hernandez has four goals in five games. Erik Hurtado and Darlington Nagbe both have three goals for the Crew.
Eloy Room was minutes away from a third straight shutout when former Crew midfielder Kei Kamara scored in the 88th minute Wednesday. With the stoppage time goal from Montreal, Room allowed two goals for the third time in the last five games instead of having four shutouts in the last six games.
A back four of Jonathan Mensah, Pedro Santos, Seven Moreira and Josh Williams started the game for Columbus. Milos Degenek came on for Williams at half and and Marlon Hariston started against New England last week, giving manager Caleb Porter options on the short rest.
NYCFC - Life After Taty
NYCFC has now had a week of practice since their leading scorer Taty Castellanos left for La Liga. Castellanos won the Golden Boot in MLS last year and was leading the league with 13 goals when he departed. In their first game without Castellanos, a 0-0 draw at Montreal, NYCFC didn’t put a shot on goal in 90 minutes.
Heber started up top against Montreal with Talles Magno and Gabriel Pereira in attack. Santiago Rodriguez was the center midfielder with Justin Haak and Maxi Moralez as defensive mids. Thiago replaced a hobbling Moralez in the 40th minute while Andreas Johnson and Nicolas Acevado came on for Heber and Rodriguez at the hour mark.
Heber has six goals on the season in 19 games but he’s started just five times. Magno has five goals and six assists while Pereira and Thiago have four goals each. NYCFC still has fire power without Castellanos, but they have to find the chemistry to play together.
Sean Johnson has delivered four straight clean sheets and he posted a shutout of Columbus in May. On the season he has allowed 21 goals in 22 games while making 57 saves and posting 12 shutouts.
Columbus Crew (+145) Moneyline
NYCFC (+165) Moneyline
Total Goals: 2.5. Over (-120). Under (+100).
To Score First: Crew (-115). NYCFC (-110). No Goals (+1100).
The Crew need to play together on defense and not give up the lapses that caught them late against Montreal. The first goal came on a corner and they need to do better on set piece defense. With Zelarayan, Hernandez and Etienne clicking together on offense, the Crew should be able to break through and score against NYCFC to at least get a draw on Saturday.
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