Atlanta United’s Odds to Win MLS Cup Fall to +800 After Josef Martinez Tears ACL in Season Opener

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Josef Martinez tears ACL

A serious knee injury suffered by Josef Martinez this weekend has devastated Atlanta United's MLS Cup odds, which now sit at a lengthy +800.
Photo by @zonaesportiva (Twitter)

  • Atlanta United have tumbled in the MLS Cup odds after star striker Josef Martinez suffered a serious knee injury
  • Sporting average odds of +483 entering the weekend, the Five Stripes have now tumbled to a distant +800 bet
  • See the updated MLS Cup odds after opening weekend

Atlanta United opened their 2020 MLS campaign on Saturday with a 2-1 victory over Nashville SC, but the win came at a massive cost, with Josef Martinez leaving the contest with a serious knee injury. Now faced with a future without the 2018 MLS top goalscorer, the Five Stripes have taken a tumble in the MLS Cup odds, dropping to +800 in soccer futures wagering at Bovada.

Odds to Win 2020 MLS Cup

Team Odds at Bovada
Los Angeles FC +275
Atlanta United +800
New York City FC +800
Seattle Sounders +900
Toronto FC +1200
LA Galaxy +1200
Minnesota United +1600
Montreal Impact +2000
NY Red Bulls +2000
Columbus Crew +2500
Sporting Kansas City +2500

Odds taken on Mar. 2. For all teams visit Bovada

Injuries Haunt Five Stripes Once Again

The Five Stripes entered this past weekend’s season opener well-positioned in MLS Cup wagering with average odds of +483. The club is coming off a solid campaign in 2019 that saw them finish second on the MLS Eastern Conference table. However, a rash of injuries hampered Atlanta’s bid to repeat as MLS Cup champions, with their playoff drive ending a with a heartbreaking 2-1 loss to Toronto FC in the Eastern Conference Final.

Martinez played an important role in the Five Stripes’ success over the past two seasons. In addition to claiming the MLS Golden Boot with a league-leading 31 goals in 2018, the 26-year-old Venezuelan also took home MLS MVP and MLS Cup MVP honors two seasons ago, and followed up with 28 total goals last season in the regular season and playoffs.

With Martinez sidelined, it remains to be seen who will fill the goalscoring void in Atlanta. Martinez’ 63 total goals represent just under half of the Five Stripes total goal production over the past seasons, and the club has sorely missed him when he has been unavailable.

With Martinez sidelined, it remains to be seen who will fill the goalscoring void in Atlanta. Martinez’ 63 total goals represent just under half of the Five Stripes total goal production over the past seasons, and the club has sorely missed him when he has been unavailable. In addition to winning just five of nine contests last season when Martinez failed to score, the club recorded just one win in five outings without their superstar in the lineup.

2020 UEFA Europa League Championship Odds Tracker

Atlanta Likely to Sign Replacement Striker

Atlanta United are likely to try and fill the void left by Martinez by signing another striker, but face a tough decision as to whether they will place Martinez on the season-ended injury list that could limit the caliber of player that they can sign under the league’s Designated Player rules. However, with a roster spot still open, the club still has some flexibility as they consider their options.

In any case, it is likely to be a more defensively-focused Five Stripes squad we see moving forward. The Atlanta United defense ranked fifth in the MLS last season while surrendering just 43 total goals but regularly surrendered big goal totals on the road, allowing 25 total goals over their final 12 league road matches of the campaign.

TFC, NYC Benefit from Atlanta’s Misfortune

And there will be no shortage of Eastern Conference rivals looking to take advantage of their misfortune. Now joining the Five Stripes at +800 in the MLS Cup odds, New York City FC represent Atlanta’s chief rival in the East, and now enjoy a clearer road to the top of the Eastern Conference table for a second straight year.

Toronto FC could also benefit from Atlanta’s struggles. With captain Michael Bradley sidelined indefinitely, Toronto come out of the opening weekend of the MLS season pegged as a soft +1200 bet in the MLS Cup odds. However, it is unwise to underestimate the battle-hardened Reds, who have reached the MLS Cup Final in three of the past four years, and overcame an ordinary regular season to knock off both NYC and the Five Stripes during an impressive playoff run last season. Indeed, with Atlanta significantly weakened, the Reds’ position at +1200 is tough to overlook for value bettors.

Pick: Toronto FC (+1200)

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