Stingy Defense to Cause Problems for Orlando City SC

Will Chace
By , Updated on: Apr 9, 2024 08:00 PM
Stingy Defense to Cause Problems for Orlando City SC

Orlando City and Nashville draw each other as opposite sides in a first-round matchup of the MLS Cup Playoffs. As the number-2 seed against the 7th-seeded Nashville SC, Orlando City will have home field advantage in this best-of-3 series. Their journey to cup contention begins on Monday at Exploria Stadium. Read on to access a prediction for Nashville and Orlando City SC’s fixture and stats on the MLS Playoffs 2023.

  • Orlando City Soccer Club vs Nashville Soccer Club, MLS Cup Playoffs Round One
  • October 30, 2023
  • 7 PM EST
  • Exploria Stadium, Orlando, Florida
  • Apple TV (Free), FS1, FOX Deportes

Orlando City SC vs Nashville SC Betting Odds

Orlando City, as the higher seed with home field advantage, are naturally the odds-on favorites in this Eastern Conference clash. The hosts are priced to win the match in regulation at (-109) for an implied probability of 52.2%. Nashville SC, well-accustomed to being an underdog this season, are listed as high as (+310). A draw is listed at (+275), currently available at highly-rated online sportsbook Bovada.

MLS Cup Round OneBetOnlineXbetBovadaMyBookie
Orlando City-110-109-110-114

To better understand the 3-way moneyline (1X2) market, see our online soccer betting tips. 

Please note, this game marks the initiation of Round One in the MLS Cup Playoffs. Round One consists of a best-of-three series, where opponents engage in a home-and-home match setup. If each team secures one victory, a third match will be played.

Should the teams remain tied after the initial 90 minutes, plus any additional stoppage time, the game will proceed directly to a penalty kick shootout. There will be no extra time played. For those placing bets, wagers made on the moneyline are applicable only during the regular regulation time. If you support a team and it wins through penalty kicks, your bet will not be considered successful.

MLS Playoffs 2023: Bracket and Schedule for Postseason Cup

Monday’s game in Orlando will mark the first match of a best-of-3 series, with the team securing two victories advancing to the Eastern Conference Semifinals. The triumphant club will face the winner of the Columbus Crew vs Atlanta United.

Following Round One, matches will adopt a conventional tournament structure, akin to the FIFA World Cup. After the regulation 90 minutes, along with any additional stoppage time, two 15-minute extra time periods will precede a potential penalty kick shootout. There won’t be double-leg ties (home-and-home series). Instead, it’s winner-takes-all, with the higher-seeded team enjoying home advantage all the way through the Final.

The key ingredients for a successful playoff journey include a robust defense, a stellar home record, and an attack capable of producing consistent shots on goal. Luck plays a significant role in the MLS Cup, where a strenuous season boils down to a small series of decisive encounters. While variations in finishing are always expected, a high volume of shots can help counterbalance the whims of fate.

Recent Form and Team News

Nashville has won just once in their past 6 games, including a shutout loss to Orlando City at home earlier in the month. A dramatic ending to their last match was sparked by a poor challenge on Luquinhas inside the goal box. John Tolkin converted the penalty to propel the New York Red Bulls into the playoffs, and leaving Nashville with the number-7 seed. Nashville had already clinched playoff qualification, but were playing to earn an improved position.

Tied with the Seattle Sounders at 32 goals conceded, Nashville boasts one of the best defenses in the MLS. Only last year’s Supporters Shield-winning Philadelphia Union have allowed fewer goals in a non-shortened season since 2013. The Boys in Gold have been a large factor in the MLS’ record-breaking number of scoreless draws this season.

Nashville To Defeat Orlando City

On the other hand, if you value strong recent form for an MLS team to make a playoff run, look no further than Orlando City SC. The Lions have strung together four consecutive victories, three of which were clean sheets. The attacking play of young striker Duncan McGuire has become a talking point of pundits as of late. The American came off the bench as a substitute in their last match and scored a brace in a 2-0 road victory.

While McGuire could be the X-factor in this edition of the fixture, the entire lineup has looked better than ever. The Lions have now lost only once in their last dozen matches, going (9-1-2) in that span.

Orlando City To Defeat Nashville

Orlando City SC vs Nashville SC Prediction and Free Betting Pick

While Orlando City has played superb soccer in the past fortnight, Nashville SC is a team primed for playoff success. They have the stingy defense every manager strives for, and can rely on the now-experienced Hany Mukhtar, who won MLS MVP last season. The German player has scored 15 goals for Nashville this season to go along with 11 assists. That makes up almost ⅔ of the team’s entire offensive production in the MLS. 

Orlando City has failed to progress past the first round in their last two MLS campaigns, and they have their hands full in Nashville. The Boys in Gold responded well under the bright lights in 2023, going all the way to the final of the inaugural Leagues Cup. They ultimately fell short to Messi & Co., but were able to hold that same squad scoreless just over a week later. 

I think Nashville can keep this game close and make Orlando City concerned about an early exit, but an outright win in regulation away from home is a tough ask. Take Nashville SC and the draw for a double chance at (-108).

Explore more MLS Playoff odds on our site.

Nashville +0.5 vs Orlando City

Odds are accurate at the time of writing but are subject to change.

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Meet the author

Will Chace

From Boston, Will's passion for sports is more of a hereditary characteristic than a learned hobby. Besides rooting for his hometown teams, he follows MMA heavily and will consume just about any sports-related content. In college, Will combined his passion for sports an...

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