Atlanta Utd lists Mikey Ambrose, Sal Zizzo, Greg Garza and Darlington Nagbe as being injured. Toronto FC will be without Caleb Patterson-Sewell and Drew Moor while Auro, Tosaint Ricketts and Jason Hernandez are doubtful.
Suspended: Franco Escobar
Injured/unavailable: Greg Garza (shoulder), Darlington Nagbe (abductor); Sal Zizzo, Mikey Ambrose (both knee)
Doubtful: Tosaint Ricketts (groin); Auro, Jason Hernandez (both hamstring)
Injured/unavailable: Drew Moor (quadriceps), Caleb Patterson-Sewell (elbow)
MAIN PREDICTION: HOME WIN
Atlanta Utd’s trip to Montreal last weekend was successful as they left town with a 2-1 victory. Man of the match Josef Martinez scored in the 31st and 57th minutes to give the visitors a solid grip on the match, but the Montreal Impact spoiled the clean sheet with a goal three minutes from time. Martinez now has 24 goals on the year and is just three from the league record of 27 in a season with 11 games to play. Atlanta, meanwhile, is unbeaten in their past four matches with three wins and a draw, and still sit in first place in the league and the Eastern Conference with 47 points. They are the best road team in the league, but their home record isn’t quite as good as it is sixth in the league with 24 points from seven wins, three draws and two losses. Overall, they have lost just five of their past 35 league games to go with 19 wins and 11 draws.
Toronto FC has now won two straight league games for just the first time this season as they trounced the Chicago Fire 3-0 at home last Saturday after beating them 2-1 away a week earlier. All the scoring came in the second half with goals from Jozy Altidore in the 52nd minute, Jonathan Osorio in the 72nd and man of the match Sebastian Giovinco in the 89th. Toronto still remains in tenth place in the East though with three wins, three draws and five losses in the past 11 matches and 22 points overall, but they are now just six points behind the New England Revolution and Montreal for the final playoff spot. TFC won’t find it easy in Atlanta though as they have just eight points on the road this year with two wins, two draws and seven defeats.
Toronto has been improving, but Atlanta is the top team in the league for a reason and should take all three points here.
SECOND PREDICTION: FIRST TEAM TO SCORE – ATLANTA UTD
Atlanta Utd has scored first in 15 of their 22 league games, including seven times at home, while Toronto FC has struck first in ten of 21. I’m expecting the first goal to be scored by Atlanta.
HEAD TO HEAD
The teams played twice last year and drew 2-2 in Toronto and Atlanta. Those are the only two previous meetings between the clubs.