6 Bold Predictions for MLS Matches from August 29-31
In a league where parity and the unexpected reign supreme on most weekends, making bold predictions for a set of Major League Soccer games can be difficult at times.
With pressure growing by the week for each team in the playoff race to succeed, there are bound to be some unexpected results put in by the teams further down the standings.
With that being said, this week's set of bold predictions involve some of the league's bottom feeders that are taking on the hierarchy of the league.
Continue reading on for a look at our six bold predictions for the MLS weekend.
Dom Dwyer's Goal Drought Will Continue, but Sporting Will Win
After bursting on the scene during the first half of the season, Dom Dwyer has just two goals in his last seven games. Those two goals were penalties against Toronto.
Dwyer has a perfect scenario in front of him Friday to break his drought from open play, but he will not be the player that finds the back of the net for Sporting Kansas City.
With plenty of other options in attack, Sporting will rebound from the 3-0 loss at home to D.C. United, but it will not be Dwyer who beats Houston keeper Tally Hall.
The biggest issue for slumping forwards is usually confidence, which is something Dwyer lacks at the moment.
Another issue for the Englishman is that he has not fired a shot on goal in three of those seven games.
Portland Will Salvage Its Awful Cascadia Cup Form
After being outplayed by Seattle last week, the Portland Timbers will enter BC Place with a point to prove.
The Timbers have earned just one point in four Cascadia Cup matches, but that total could be improved upon against a struggling Vancouver side.
Vancouver enters Saturday's match on a two-game winless streak, and before it can get things rolling at home, Portland will have a chance to pounce early and earn three points.
If Darlington Nagbe and Diego Valeri can threaten the Vancouver back four, that will be without a suspended Johnny Leveron, early in the match, they should be able to keep the momentum on their side for most of the match.
A star performance from Nagbe would be welcomed by all Timbers fans, who are still waiting for the first goal of the season from the midfielder.
Chicago Will Take Home the Brimstone Cup for 3rd Straight Year
There aren't many things going right for Chicago at the moment, but that could all change with a victory over FC Dallas at home Saturday night.
The Fire, who missed out on Jermaine Jones and shipped Jhon Kennedy Hurtado to Chivas USA last week, need something positive to go their way soon, or a playoff spot will be fully out of reach.
Frank Yallop's side have the perfect recipe for an upset brewing against a side they have beaten in the last two years to earn the Brimstone Cup, which was awarded for the first time in 2001 when FC Dallas was the Dallas Burn.
FC Dallas enters Toyota Stadium on a 10-game unbeaten run, but they will be without Michel and Blas Perez, who are two of the key players in the lineup.
With a few stars absent, and a weaker opponent in front of them, Oscar Pareja's team could take the game lightly and slip up.
Real Salt Lake Will Struggle to Score Against San Jose
It would be very easy to predict that Real Salt Lake will put up four or five goals against San Jose, but we're in the business of making bold predictions.
San Jose's defense has looked weak at best in two of its last three games, but surprisingly it held Seattle to a 1-1 draw last Wednesday at CenturyLink Field.
With some confidence that they can contain the threat of another Western Conference contender, the Earthquakes will concede only one or two goals at Buck Shaw Stadium.
A result like that for the defense, which should be complemented by some type of production from Chris Wondolowski up front, would complicate RSL's search for home-field advantage in the playoffs.
D.C. Will Continue Its Impressive Form Against Contenders in East
After receiving a thumping from LA Wednesday night, D.C. United will have to rebound with a strong performance against New York at home Sunday.
Despite their rough games against the best in the West, the Black and Red have done well against the contenders in the East with a 5-1-0 record against New York, Toronto and Sporting Kansas City in 2014.
Those five victories are two more than Ben Olsen's side had in 2013, which is a distant memory in the minds of the team's fans right now.
In those five wins, D.C. has conceded just once, which came against Toronto on July 5.
Expect that form to hold up, even against a Red Bulls side that has the top scorer and assist man in the league.
Cubo Will Spring to Life in the SuperClasico
For five long weeks, Chivas USA fans, if there are any, have waited for Erick Torres to break out the robot.
The scoring celebration of the Mexican forward will have the dust blown off it during the SuperClasico, as Torres will score for the first time since July 20.
Torres did lose his top provider in Mauro Rosales to a trade, but his side did acquire Nigel Reo-Coker and Hurtado recently to bring stability to the side.
We're not saying that Chivas USA will beat the Galaxy because that is just absurd to even think about, but Torres will have a strong game up front thanks to the abilities of Reo-Coker in the defensive part of the midfield, which should help the Goats keep more possession at StubHub Center.
Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90.