Preview: NYCFC Limps Home to Host Revs

USA Today

by Anthony J. Merced

NYCFC returns home from their four-game road trip with just four out of twelve points to play a New England team that has yet to win on the road in 2017. So far, Patrick Vieira’s side has been quite the force at Yankee Stadium, losing only once and scoring at least one goal in each fixture. It should be a welcome sight, after nearly a month away against a team that is very beatable.

New York City was played off the field on Sunday against Atlanta United, losing 3-1. The team which looked very similar to the side that handed Atlanta a 3-1 result at Yankee Stadium in April, looked largely ineffective. The back line was split by low passes and one-touch efforts. The man-marking also left something to be desired as Atlanta put up three goals in less than five minutes. NYCFC wasn’t able to recover.

Now they return home to play a New England team that has been abysmal on the road. All five of their losses have come away from Gillette Stadium and the defense is unable to hold teams at bay. Against the Red Bulls on Saturday, the Revs were run off the field in the second half after taking an early lead. NYCFC should be able to exploit the same areas on Wednesday with even greater success considering the talent up front. Villa, Wallace and Harrison, should they be in the starting lineup, may have ample opportunities to pad their stats.

Projected Starting XI:

NYCFC: Johnson; Allen, Callens, Brillant, Sweat; Moralez, Lopez, McNamara; Wallace, Villa, Harrison

New England Revolution: Cropper; Farrell, Anguoa, Delamea, Tierney; Kouassi, Rowe, Fagundez, Nguyen; Agudelo, Kamara

Worth Noting:

  • Alexander Ring will not be available for the game due to yellow card accumulation. It is particularly unfortunate due to his level of play in the midfield. With Andrea Pirlo also out, it leaves NYCFC with limited options on the bench should Lopez or Moralez lose steam late in the game. New England’s midfield is feisty with Kouassi and Rowe being rather physical. Vieira will need to manage the midfield cautiously, knowing his lack of depth heading into this game.
  • Jack Harrison is becoming equally as dangerous on the ball as David Villa. His goal against Atlanta showed the need for teams to mark him, stretching valuable resources on the field. This season he has scored five goals in 2017 and has blossomed into a legitimate threat, worthy of extra coverage by opposing defenses. New England may not be able to handle both Villa and Harrison, leaving the possibility for a wide open game should NYCFC be able to spread the ball as well as they have in the past.