Atlanta United takes on the Portland Timbers at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium for the fourth matchday of the 2023 MLS season. Atlanta is off to a good start in the new campaign and will be targeting an upper playoff seed in the Eastern Conference after missing out last year with an 11th-place finish. Their last outing ended in a fantastic 3-0 away win over Charlotte FC after a brilliant first 45 minutes saw the Five Stripes effectively put the match to bed in the first half. The victory preserves Atlanta United’s unbeaten start to the season as the team has racked up two wins and a draw in their first three matches. Atlanta, who sit roughly as the oddsmaker’s ninth-favorites to lift the MLS Cup with odds of around 25/1, come into this match as significant favorites. Their last home outing resulted in a 1-1 draw with Toronto FC.
Portland comes into this match looking to put an end to two match losing streak following the team’s 2-1 home loss to expansion team St. Louis City SC last weekend. It was a disappointing result from a team that lost only three times in 17 outings at Providence Park last season. After opening the 2023 campaign on the right foot with a 1-0 home win over Sporting KC, the Timbers would then give up five goals in the next two matches as they slumped to two straight defeats. Portland is dealing with a number of injuries as manager Giovanni Savarese looks set to be without no fewer than seven players for the trip to Atlanta. Despite these problems, Portland has not played too badly even though they have lost two of their opening three matches.
Atlanta is off to a good start while Portland heads into this away game with the injuries mounting up. While the hosts undoubtedly deserve to be the favorites in this match, this could be a case of the oddsmakers overreacting to both teams' recent form. We have these teams much closer than the current odds would suggest, meaning there is clear value in backing the away side in some capacity. The Asian handicap +1 is an interesting market if you are able to get it as a one goal defeat would result in our bet being returned. However, we’re going with the double chance for the visitors at excellent odds well above evens. Our Atlanta United vs Portland Timbers prediction: Timbers double chance