Inter Miami vs DC United: Preview and Prediction

Inter Miami will want to keep hold of their top spot in the Eastern Conference table as they host playoff spots chasing DC United.

Inter Miami will rue the chance to extend their lead at the top of the Eastern Conference table, as they could only manage a goalless draw against Florida State rivals Orlando City ahead of the visit of DC United. Tata Martino will have seen that as a brilliant opportunity to exploit the home team, who were on a bad run of form before that game.

The manager might have been a bit happy that his side had managed their first clean sheet since the opening day of the regular season. However, the result and dropped points do give FC Cincinnati the impetus to put pressure on Inter Miami in the race to take the lead in the Eastern Conference table.

Inter Miami now host DC United at the Chase Stadium, and Martino will want his side to show some mettle and get past their opponents. The big difference between the last game and this one is the element of pressure that could further build on Inter Miami should they end up dropping more points in this clash.

Meanwhile, DC United desperately need to stabilise their season before it spirals out of hand. They are still within the playoffs spot and will have to keep a tight grip on proceedings so as not to keep sight of their targets in the season ahead.

Troy Lesesne’s men have not been in good defensive form, conceding more than one goal in five of their last six games. They have conceded 23 goals already so far, and their home record has let them down this campaign. However, they can take solace from how they have fared on the road, taking points from five of their last six away games.

They will also be relieved that two of their next three clashes are on the road, which gives them a good opportunity to balance their act. Moreover, DC United have never lost to Inter Miami at the Chase Stadium, winning two of their last three visits.

Team News & Tactics

Inter Miami

Inter Miami’s star attacker Lionel Messi was the big miss in midweek. After suffering a knock to the area, the Argentine apparently had a knee issue. Messi will unlikely be risked for the DC United encounter and remains a considerable doubt to take part in proceedings.

Shanyder Borgelin also missed Wednesday with a hamstring issue, while Federico Redondo remains sidelined with an LCL issue. Robbie Robinson will likely miss out again with a knee problem of his own.

There is also the situation surrounding Diego Gomez, who continues to deal with an ankle issue and is unlikely to recover ahead of the DC United clash. Facundo Farias will miss the remainder of the year with a torn ACL.

Ian Fray will be hoping to return soon from his ACL problem. However, Jordi Alba made his comeback against Orlando City as a substitute after missing the last four games of the regular season.

Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Callender, Weigandt, Kryvtsov, Freire, Alba; Gressel, Busquets, Ruiz; Rojas, Suarez, Campana

DC United

For DC United, Russell Canouse had a health issue that saw him miss the previous game, while there’s the big worry with Conner Antley, who is now primed to miss the remainder of the campaign with a torn ACL.

DC United also decided to loan defender Matai Akinmboni to USL side Loudoun United FC until the end of the year. But they do hold the option to recall him at any time. Centre-back Lucas Bartlett will undoubtedly play at the heart of the defence for DC United after his goalscoring performance in Wednesday’s loss to the New York Red Bulls.

For the Red & Blacks, they will hope for their attackers to shine through, with the likes of Christian Benteke, the biggest name, to probably get the goal in the attacking third against Inter Miami.

Probable Lineup (5-3-2): Bono; Herrera, McVey, Bartlett, Peltola, Jeahze; Pirani, Rodriguez, Klich; Ku-DiPietro, Benteke

Ways to Watch

Key Stats

  • Inter Miami have scored in their last 8 games of the regular season at the Chase Stadium.
  • Inter Miami’s goalless draw against Orlando City was only their second clean sheet of the regular season.
  • DC United conceded the second-most goals (23) in the Eastern Conference.
  • DC United have taken points in 5 of their last 6 away games this season.
  • DC United have never lost to Inter Miami at the Chase Stadium, winning 2 of their last 3 here.

Player to Watch

Sergio Busquets

Embed from Getty Images

The veteran midfielder has quietly played a good role in Gerardo Martino’s setup, as the manager knows all about him from his days as Barcelona’s manager. However, the Argentine tactician will look for more defensive solidity ahead of the upcoming games and will rely heavily on the Spaniard for answers.

The experienced midfielder will be critical to where Inter Miami finishes in the regular season, and in games like the one against DC United, he must showcase his class. His position makes it all the more important to help the team keep attackers at bay and probably get Inter Miami’s third clean sheet of the season on Saturday.


Inter Miami 1-1 DC United

Some might come with the prediction that DC United could go into this clash as favourites to take three points. But Gerardo Martino’s men may have found the defensive side of their game lately. The home side might probably miss the prominent figure of Lionel Messi, but they still have the formidable presence of players like Busquets and Luis Suarez.

DC United do have a good record to protect at the Chase Stadium, something they might manage with a boring draw in Miami. Hence, this game is poised to see the points get shared. That could come back to haunt Martino’s side later in the season, as the pressure will grow on them in their bid to keep hold of the top spot in the Eastern Conference.

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