Two weeks ago, New York City FC lost a hard fought battle against Sporting Kansas City 1-0. Today, they will try to get back on track with a victory against the Philadelphia Union, another team coming off a loss, in Philadelphia.
This game is so important for NYCFC because it’s the first of a rough schedule, playing four games in two weeks. A win in the first game would go far, gaining back lost momentum.
NYCFC is 1-1-2, while Philadelphia is 0-3-2. Don’t gain false hope based on Philadelphia’s lackluster record though, they easily could have won two games, most recently against Sporting KC, who netted two goals in extra time to steal the win.
New York’s bye week last week will be a massive help for this game, as they had many critical injuries they needed to rest and take care of. David Villa, Sebastian Velasquez, and Josh Williams were all out due to various ailments, but all are expected to return for this matchup.
Adam Nemec also missed their last game, but will come into this next one with some positive momentum. The striker scored on March 27th in a matchup against Luxembourg for his Slovakian national team.
The return of Nemec and Villa should help NYCFC quite a bit, who appeared to struggle in their last matchup on the offensive end without them.
The pressure will also be on for the New York offense, who should try to pressure the Union as much as possible. The reason for that is because the team will be starting a new goalie.
Algerian/French keeper Raïs M’Bolhi was given an indefinite leave of absence, and in his place, John McCarthy will be making his MLS debut for this game. He was the 2014 USL GK of the year.
Another player NYCFC will have to look out for is Fernando Aristeguieta. The Venezuelan DP has been playing excellent football since his arrival in the states.
NYCFC: Saunders, Williams, Hernandez, Wingert, Brovsky, Diskerud, Jacobson, Grabavoy, Velasquez, Villa, Nemec
Union: McCarthy, Gaddis, Edu, Vittoria, Fabinho, Carroll, Lahoud, Wenger, Ayuk, Le Toux, Aristeguieta
Prediction: NYCFC 2, Philadelphia 1 (Goalscorers: Villa, Nemec – Aristeguieta)
This should be a prime opportunity for NYCFC to rebound and get on the right track for their upcoming stretch. They won’t blow it, and will defeat Philadelphia with a strong offensive performance against the inexperienced, nervous opposing keeper