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Major League Soccer
Jun 26, 2022 at 8pm UK
Banc of California Stadium

Los Angeles
2 - 0
NY Red Bulls

Arango (67'), Palacios (70')
Acosta (83')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Nealis (45+2')

Preview: Los Angeles FC vs. New York Red Bulls - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Los Angeles FC vs. New York Red Bulls - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Sunday's Major League Soccer clash between Los Angeles FC and New York Red Bulls, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Los Angeles FC can maintain their first-place standing in the Western Conference of Major League Soccer on Sunday with a victory at home against the New York Red Bulls at Banc of California.

The Black and Gold have points in seven of their eight domestic home fixtures this year, while the Red Bulls are just a single point behind their state rivals, New York City FC, for first in the Eastern Conference.

Match preview

In an intense match that had a playoff feel, according to LAFC boss Steve Cherundolo, his side overcame a second-half deficit, drawing the Seattle Sounders 1-1, extending their unbeaten run to three straight games.

That draw should tell us a lot about the character that this team have shown this season, ending a four-match losing run at Lumen Field.

LA have earned 12 points on this current campaign when conceding first, showing much more fight and determination than we saw in 2021.

Their success through 15 games can be attributed among other things to their quality in the attacking third, having been shut out only once in the regular season, while showing plenty of discipline along the way.

While we have seen them do well to block out any outside noise, there is a potential distraction that they might need to contend with, namely Carlos Vela, as the team have until the end of the month to find a way to settle his contract situation.

Until that ordeal is sorted, it will undoubtedly continue to be a talking point in MLS circles, seeing how big of a role he plays in this team's success.

In the meantime the club made another blockbuster signing that they hope will take them to MLS Cup glory, adding Welsh captain and five-time Champions League winner Gareth Bale to the The Black and Gold, not long after bringing in Giorgio Chiellini, who captained the Italians to the Euro tile last summer.

In the Tri-State area, the Red Bulls are off to their best start to a regular season since 2018, with 26 points from 16 encounters.

At home, we are seeing the team we all expected at the start of the campaign, winning their last four matches played at Red Bull Arena in all competitions, outscoring their opponents 12-2 over that stretch.

Their record at home may be better, though the same cannot be said about their form on the road, going winless in their previous three away fixtures, failing to score on two of those occasions.

When New York are winning, it is usually because of their relentless high press, traditionally averaging over 300 presses over a 90-minute encounter, covering over 2 kilometres of distance.

That kind of physicality will be something to watch for this weekend in a venue where the heat and humidity can take a toll on a side that expend more energy than almost any MLS squad.

Gerhard Struber has been able to count on some difference-makers up front, with New York at the moment scoring the third-most goals in the league (26), six more than they had at this stage a year ago.

Los Angeles FC Major League Soccer form:
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • D

Los Angeles FC form (all competitions):
  • L
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • D

New York Red Bulls Major League Soccer form:
  • D
  • D
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • W

New York Red Bulls form (all competitions):
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • W

Team News

Vela made his 100th career MLS appearance last Saturday, replacing Kwadwo Opoku at the start of the second half, Danny Trejo picked up his first cap when he took the place of Danny Musovski in the latter stages of their match in Seattle.

Cristian Arango has found the back of the net in consecutive matches for the Black and Gold, moving into a tie with Ryan Hollingshead for second on the team with four, while Latif Blessing had the game-winner in their previous match against the Red Bulls back in 2019 (4-2).

As many as four players could be out of the lineup for LA heading into this encounter as Ismael Tajouri-Shradi is questionable with a left quad strain, and Tomas Romero could be forced out again because of health and safety protocols.

Julian Gaines has not recovered from a pelvis issue which has sidelined him for the majority of this season, and Erik Duenas continues to nurse a left knee injury.

Luquinhas and Lewis Morgan have turned into difference makers with the Red Bulls, each scoring goals in back-to-back games in all competitions, while Omir Fernandez tallied their third goal on Wednesday as they blanked the reigning MLS Cup champions 3-0 to advance to the semi-finals of the U.S. Open Cup.

Carlos Coronel has stopped the last six shots fired at him, earning clean sheets versus Toronto and NYCFC, while Patryk Klimala is looking for his first domestic goal since tallying the equaliser in their 3-3 draw versus the Chicago Fire on May 18.

Andres Reyes remains out with a sore foot, while Lucas Monzon and Serge Ngoma are not expected to recover from their foot injuries in time for this weekend.

Los Angeles FC possible starting lineup:
Crepeau; Palacios, Chiellini, Murillo, Hollingshead; Cifuentes, Sanchez, Acosta; Vela, Arango, Jennings

New York Red Bulls possible starting lineup:
Coronel; Edwards, S. Nealis, Long, Tolkin; D. Nealis, Amaya, Casseres; Luquinhas, Morgan; Fernandez

We say: Los Angeles FC 1-0 New York Red Bulls

The California heat should favour the home team, as New York might have to reduce the amount of pressing they do in that warm weather, while the Black and Gold are accustomed to playing in those conditions and have not been shut out of a regular-season home fixture all year.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data

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Premier League Table

Eastern Conference

1Inter MiamiInter Miami1594236201631
2FC CincinnatiCincinnati149321911830
3New York Red BullsNY Red Bulls146532521423
4New York City FCNY City147251816223
6Columbus Crew135621913621
7Charlotte FCCharlotte FC146351413121
8Philadelphia UnionPhiladelphia134542521417
9DC United144552024-417
10Orlando City134451520-516
11Nashville SCNashville133641720-315
12Atlanta UnitedAtlanta133461716113
13CF MontrealMontreal133371731-1412
14Chicago Fire142481326-1310
15New England RevolutionNew England12219925-167

Western Conference

1Real Salt LakeSalt Lake1484227141328
2Minnesota UnitedMinnesota Utd127322114724
3Los Angeles GalaxyLA Galaxy145722521422
4Austin FCAustin146441917222
5Los Angeles FCLos Angeles136342419521
6Colorado RapidsColorado146352423121
7Vancouver WhitecapsVancouver135441915419
8Houston DynamoHouston135351213-118
9St Louis City133731920-116
10Seattle SoundersSeattle143561617-114
11Portland TimbersPortland143472629-313
13Sporting Kansas CityKansas132562124-311
14San Jose EarthquakesEarthquakes1431102233-1110
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