Bold predictions are back for round 3 as bold as ever. On the year I’m 0 for 2 on my predictions, but I don’t regret them at all. It was just a little bad luck. Anyway, in Round 3 we will cover our favorite fantasy expansion team, Atlanta United and our under-the-weather expansion team, Minnesota United.
This week I’m also introducing Bold Picks. For each prediction I’ll tell you the players who will be on my team. You can tell me whether I’m crazy, insanely intelligent, or not bold at all in the comments below.
Atlanta’s Steamroller Cruises
Atlanta United just ran through the Loons like Hulk smashes through walls. Many of you are sitting in your seat at work reading this, saying, “but that doesn’t mean anything! Minnesota’s defense just flat out sucks!” Well, I agree to the latter, but this isn’t based off of just this past week’s performance. Atlanta looked good against New York and had one of the more experienced teams on the ropes almost the entire game, but lost it due to finishing and game management (both of which were expected to get better with time). They got better. The finishing was superb against Minnesota.
This brings us to the opponent, Chicago. If you’ve been following MLS so far, you’ll know the Fire are light years better than they were last season. Unfortunately, their bright start is going to come to a crashing halt this weekend. The score may not end 3-1, but I Atlanta will score at least 3 goals against Chicago. Additionally, I’ll make the wager right now, that, barring injury, Atlanta leads the league in goals scored come the end of the regular season.
Result: ATL 3 – 1 CHI
My Picks: Almiron ($9.5), Martinez ($9.0) and Asad ($8.5) will all be on my team with an Almiron captain, because these bold predictions are no joke.
Minnesota United Show Composure for the First Time
I’d bet at least half of you reading this either laughed out loud at the thought of a composed Minnesota or scoffed at me from your seat. But that’s ok, because I’ll be snickering to myself come this weekend when Minnesota hang on for a win against Colorado.
I think we’ve understated how brutal Minnesota has had it to start the season. They faced the two dangerous looking attacks to start the season. Those were arguably two of the best attacks we’ve ever seen in the league. We all knew the Loons were coming in less prepared than Atlanta and with less money spent. This showed most notably in defense. However, people forget they’ve been able to produce chances and score even. With Ramirez up top, Venegas underneath, and Molino on the wing, the attack actually looked pretty good at times against Atlanta. The problem was the insane amount of pressure being poured on a rather porous defense
The good news is one of the league’s, least electrifying attacks is up next. Minnesota will have time to possess, breath, think, and gain confidence. Once they do that, the defense will solidify (a little assuming they take out Demidov) and we’ll get to see a new side of Minnesota.
Result: MNU 2 – 1 COL
My Picks: I will have Venegas ($7.5) on my team, but that’s it. If you want to go bolder then I’d pick up Ramirez ($8), but I’m not sure if I’m bold enough yet to go for both. However, don’t take that lack of confidence in any one Minnesota player to mean the Rapids have a chance. I won’t have any Rapids players, because the Loons will definitely spoil that clean sheet.