Our prediction for this MLS match:
Atlanta United made a flying start to the season, but they have been having their ups and downs of late. Tata Martino’s men are still seen as one of main favourites to win the MLS Cup, but they need to keep on raising their form if they are to lift the prestigious trophy for the first time ever. The Five Stripes were beaten by the likes of Sporting KC and New York Red Bulls in previous two home games in the Major League Soccer, but they are definitely capable of beating Philadelphia at home as the U are not regarded as good travelers. Jim Curtin’s men have been in a fine form of late, but seeing that they often struggle on the travels, we predict the hosts will pick up all three points from Sunday’s football match. A man to watch in the home team will be Josef Martinez, who has netted eight goals in the 2018 MLS campaign to date.
Highlighted Player (Josef Martinez):
Josef Alexander Martinez Mencia started his senior career at Caracas, but he made no more than 36 league appearances for the Venezuelan outfit from 2010 to 2012. Martinez then moved to Europe and the 170-cm tall striker scored 4 goals in 34 appearances for the capital club. In the 2013/2014 season he played for fellow Swiss outfit Thun (on loan) and on June 7, 2014 he signed a contract with Serie A team Torino. In December, 2017 Josef Martinez scored his first ever goal in the Italian top flight in a 2-2 draw with Palermo. The Venezuela international currently plays (on loan) for Atlanta United in MLS and he made his debut for Gerardo Martino’s team against New York Red Bulls. Speaking of his international career, Martinez made his Venezuela debut against El Salvador, coming from the bench after 76 minutes. On November 10, 2016 he scored a hat-trick for La Vinotinto in a thrilling 5-0 victory over Bolivia and it has to be noted that he has four caps (two goals) for Venezuela U20 team.
Highlighted Team (Philadelphia Union):
Based in Chester, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Union is an American soccer club that compete in Major League Soccer. The U have been participating in MLS since 2010, but they have yet to win the domestic trophy. Philadelphia welcome their opponents at Talen Energy Stadium, the venue that was opened on June 27, 2010 and current capacity of the stadium is 18.500.
The U made it to the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup final on two occasions (2014, 2015), but they were beaten by Seattle Sounders and Sporting Kansas City respectively in the title games. The likes of D.C. United and New York Red Bulls are regarded as the club’s fiercest rivals, but they share a rivalry with Seattle Sounders as well.
Philadelphia’s colors are navy blue and gold, but they wear white shirts and white socks when playing on the road. USA international Freddy Adu is one of the most notable footballers who player for the U in the past. The former Benfica man scored seven goals in 37 appearances for Philadelphia Union in MLS.