Reigning MLS Cup champion LAFC begin defense of their MLS title on Saturday when they host the Portland Timbers at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles. LAFC were scheduled to open the season on Feb. 25 against the rival LA Galaxy at the Rose Bowl, but heavy rain and snow in the area forced that match to be postponed until July. That means that Saturday's game will serve as the season opener for LAFC, which won both the Supporters' Shield and the MLS Cup title last season. Steve Cherundolo's men will face a Portland team that opened the season with a 1-0 victory over Sporting KC on Monday.
Kickoff is 4:30 p.m. ET. Caesars Sportsbook lists LAFC as the -255 favorites (risk $255 to win $100) in the latest LAFC vs. Portland odds, with the Timbers the +625 underdog. A draw is priced at +380. The over/under for total goals scored is 3.5. Before locking in any Portland Timbers vs. LAFC picks or MLS predictions, you need to see what SportsLine soccer expert Jon Eimer has to say.
Eimer is a high-volume bettor who has vast knowledge of leagues and players across the globe. Since joining SportsLine, he has covered the English Premier League, Serie A, the FA Cup and much more. Since the end of last year's World Cup he has been red-hot, going 57-31-2, returning $2,590 for $100 bettors.
Now, Eimer has broken down LAFC vs. Portland Timbers from every angle and just revealed his picks and predictions. You can head to SportsLine now to see Eimer's picks. Here are the betting lines and trends for Portland Timbers vs. LAFC:
- LAFC vs. Portland Timbers spread: LAFC -1.5 (+110), Portland +1.5 (-140)
- LAFC vs. Portland Timbers over/under: 3.5 goals
- LAFC vs. Portland Timbers money line: LAFC -255, Portland +575, Draw +360
- LAFC: The club ranked second in the MLS in goals last season (66)
- POR: The Timbers rank fourth in the MLS in head duel percentage (61.5)
- LAFC vs. Portland Timbers picks: See picks here
Why you should back LAFC
The defending champs have a dangerous attacker in Denis Bouanga. The 28-year-old from France appeared in just seven matches for LAFC last season after he was sold by Saint-Étienne for $5 million. He scored only one goal for LAFC, which ironically came against Portland, but he is a proven scorer who had 26 goals in 97 appearances for Saint-Étienne. With the retirement of Gareth Bale, Bouanga figures to play a larger role for LAFC this season, and he enters Saturday's match on a roll, having scored four goals in the preseason.
In addition, LAFC will face a Portland team that will be without one of its best players, Yimmy Chara. The 31-year-old Colombian has 14 goals in 86 career appearances for the Timbers, but he was forced to leave Monday's victory in the first half with a right hamstring injury. He was officially ruled out for Saturday's game.
Why you should back the Portland Timbers
The Timbers added a playmaking midfielder in the offseason in Evander. The 24-year-old from Brazil had 50 goals and 58 assists in 167 appearances with Midtjylland of the Danish league prior to joining Portland on a club-record transfer fee. His arrival is widely regarded as one of the biggest acquisitions by any MLS team from the offseason.
In addition, the Timbers face an LAFC team that lost two key attackers in the offseason. Gareth Bale, who helped the club lift the Cup after coming over in midseason, retired in the offseason. In addition, Cristian Arango, who led the team and finished ninth in the MLS in goals (16), was transferred to Liga MX.
How to make LAFC vs. Portland Timbers picks
Eimer has broken down this MLS match from every angle and locked in his top picks. He is leaning Under the goal total and has identified another best bet for Portland vs. LAFC. You can only see his MLS picks and analysis at SportsLine.
So who wins LAFC vs. Portland Timbers on Saturday? And where does all the betting value lie? Visit SportsLine now to see which wager in Portland Timbers vs. LAFC has all the value, all from the soccer expert who has gone 57-31-2 since the end of the World Cup, and find out.