MLS Conference Semi-Finals: NYCFC vs New England Revolution Date, Time, and Predictions
When: Tuesday, November 30th at 7:30 PM EST
Where to Watch: FS1, Fox Desportes
The MLS Playoffs continue this Tuesday night with the third of four conference semi-finals matchups, this one between the #4 seed New York City FC and the #1 seed New England Revolution. NYCFC comfortably made it out of the first round after beating Atlanta United 2-0, yet the Revolution have had an even easier time coasting to the second round thanks to a first-round bye. The Revolution will look to become the 8th ever team to win the MLS Cup and the Supporters Shield in the same year, while NYCFC will look to grab their third playoff win since 2018.
What to Know:
New Englands Lay-off
Thanks to their first-round bye, the Revolution haven’t played a game since November 7th--more so, they haven’t played a meaningful conference game in months, having clinched the top spot in the East back in the beginning of October. We already saw the #1 seeded Rapids fall in the Western Conference Semi-Finals on Thanksgiving (as predicted by me, no big deal) so you have to at least consider the break from play to be a big-time factor in this game. The only thing that makes me feel a bit more confident in the Revolution than I did in the Rapids is the fact that the Revolution has more playoff experience, having made it all the way to Conference Finals just last year.
The Impact Of Valentin Castellanos
Scoring 19 goals in 33 games, NYCFC’s star striker Valentin Castellanos has been in incredible form--and has the Golden Boot trophy to show for it. Castellanos is currently on a 5-game scoring streak, even netting one in their first-round playoff matchup against Atlanta. Castellanos is definitely the biggest concern for this Revolution defense, who allowed 41 goals on the season--the ninth least in the entire MLS. Castellanos currently stands at +260 to be an any-time goal scorer, so that might be worth a look if you’re planning on taking action in this game.
New England’s Dynamic Duo
While the Revolution defense will have to worry about the attacking play of Castellanos, New England will at least be able to return the favor--their striking duo of Gustavo Bou and Adam Buska is one of the scariest pairs in the MLS. The two have scored 31 goals combined, and account for most of New England’s attacking play with 202 shots on net between the two of them. Add on the passing vision of their star midfielder Charles Gil (who’s assisted on 18 goals all season) and the two Revolution strikers could be a threat to anybody.
Prediction and Best Bets
Since the MLS has implemented the 1st Round Bye in 2019, only ONE team has won their first playoff game off of a bye against an opponent who has already won a postseason match. Add on the fact that NYCFC is in incredible form (losing only 1 game since October 3rd) and you’ve got yourself a nightmare matchup for the Revolution. While New England does hold an edge with the game being in Foxborough, I think NYCFC’s form will be too much for a rusty Revolution side to deal with. I’ll be taking NYCFC to win (+290), but here’s what my entire slip will look like going into tonight’s game:
NYCFC to Win +290
Valentin Castellanos to score +260
Both teams to score YES -164
P.S. If you find yourself watching the game and want to get in on some live-action, click HERE to get some live-betting tips from our soccer expert!