It’s here again, soccer fans! Another edition of the New York Derby will be played out on Sunday, August 6th. It will be a high powered matchup. New York City FC has consistently been one of the best teams in the league all year, and the New York Red Bulls are undoubtedly the hottest team in the league right now. The Red Bulls have won four straight in MLS, and have not lost since their last time out against NYCFC on June 24th. MLS fans are in for a treat in this one.
The New York Derby: Each Team’s Keys to the Game
New York City FC
Short Term Memory
While New York City FC has been consistently good all year, they are coming off their worst loss of the season last week. A 4-0 defeat in Toronto is certainly something the club will want to forget, and they have done a good job of that in 2017. City has lost seven matches this year, but has yet to lose twice in a row. While the Red Bulls will be working to change that statistic, City must fix what went wrong in Toronto, and refocus to Sunday’s game. They have the talent, skill, and tactical precision to do so, it is just a matter of getting the mentality back to winning ways.
Numbers In Attack
In order to be successful in this game, City must support David Villa up top. This is important in all their games, but it is essential on Sunday. It is no secret that Villa is a superb player and has the ability to turn defenses inside-out on his own. However, over the Red Bulls recent hot streak, they have become more compact on defense, and more difficult to break down. Especially on the small pitch at Yankee Stadium, RBNY’s high press and ability to get numbers behind the ball will allow minimal room for the likes of Villa and Jack Harrison.
To beat this, City need to pass the ball well in the attacking third, and be able to move off the ball to create space for shots.
New York Red Bulls
Head coach Jesse Marsch has a few key decisions to make regarding the team he puts on the field on Sunday. The team has been without left back Kemar Lawrence for about a month due to Gold Cup play, and a one-game MLS suspension. Now that he is available for selection, a conflict has arisen. Without Lawrence, the Red Bulls are undefeated thanks to a formation change. The question for Marsch is whether to interrupt the success between the current XI by inserting the star fullback or not.
Win the Wings
A trademark feature of the Red Bulls’ system is speed and lethal attack on the wings. However, on Sunday the red-hot Daniel Royer and friends will be facing the likes of Jack Harrison and Rodney Wallace on the outside of the NYCFC offense. Whoever wins the battle along the wings will likely dominate the game, making it one of the most important parts of the field.
Match-up to Watch: Daniel Royer (RBNY) vs. Jack Harrison (NYCFC)
Score: RBNY 2-1 NYCFC
Both teams will face a tough test. Eventually, the Red Bulls’ high flying offense will break through, and their defense will not allow enough breathing room for City. NYCFC will lose their second in a row, and RBNY will win their fifth in a row, and fourth on the road.