|Moneyline (Regular Time)|
|Insights Backheeled Insights proprietary algorithm combines a variety of factors, using machine learning to weigh variables. It is solely focused on MLS data.||45.9%||25.5%||28.6%|
|Over/Under (Regular Time)|
|O 2.5||U 2.5||BTTS|
|Insights Backheeled Insights proprietary algorithm combines a variety of factors, using machine learning to weigh variables. It is solely focused on MLS data.||49.5%||50.5%||53.0%|
What The Book Sees
The line suggest that NE are roughly 3 xGD weaker than DC over a full season. So far in 2023, DC have been .3 xGD/90 stronger, and in the last two months, DC have been .8 xGD/90 stronger (DC have the best xGD in the league over the last 2 months).
What Insights Sees
The BI model projects that DC are a top 5 team and NE are high mid-table team.
What we reasonably expect...
Neither team wants to be the protagonist. NE will likely have more of the ball, but they don't want to meander side to side; they want to get the ball into the attackers, especially Gil and Bou, as quickly as possible. DC will likely be happy sitting in a mid-block and waiting for mistakes, then playing directly into Christian Benteke and driving forward.
The high-leverage variable will likely be…
DC's center backs owning the box.
NER continue to outperform their xG. It's the same run they hit in their record-setting 2022 season. There isn't a metric that explains their success except that their talent out-performs traditional moments; when Carles Gil makes a pass from an area or Gustavo Bou hits a shot from a spot, they are more likely to do good things than the average player. The best thing you can do against them - as is true against most teams - is restrict final third space and clog the box. DC happen to do both of those well, largely because they use 3CBs and 2 active DMs. DC just don't give as much easy space away as other MLS teams. If DC's center backs can stay central and win their space in the box, they are well suited to limit NER's attack.