t’s game day: New York City FC will play Santos de Guápiles in the 2022 Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League. It’s the first competitive game of the year for NYCFC, which earned a berth in the tournament by beating the Portland Timbers in December to win the 2021 MLS Cup.
For a full scouting report on what to expect from Santos, read “The Bielsa Report: Five things you should know about Santos de Guápiles.”
Match: NYCFC at Santos de Guápiles
Date and Time: Tuesday, February 15, 8 pm ET
Venue: Estadio Nacional de Costa Rica, San José, Costa Rica
Watch: FS2 and TUDN
Stream: Foxsports.com, FOX Sports App, TUDN.com, TUDN App
Listen: The game will be broadcast in both English and Spanish on NYCFC Radio
• Midfielder Alfredo Morales reportedly contracted COVID while training in Mexico, and won’t be available to play today.
• Will we see the debut of Thiago Martins, the 26-year-old center back from Brazil signed to a Designated Player contract? Martins is the biggest signing of the offseason to date. You can read all about it here.
• We’ll certainly see the debut of Dude Wipes, the NYCFC sleeve partner for 2022. The irreverent personal hygiene brand that makes a wipe in refreshing “mint chill” will appear on the NYCFC kit for the first time in public.
• Santos won’t be playing hosting NYCFC at its regular home, the 2,300-seat Estadio Ebal Rodriguez Aguilar. Instead, the teams will be playing at the 36,000-seat Estadio Nacional de Costa Rica in San José, the capital. While the Estadio Ebal Rodriguez Aguilar has a synthetic surface, the Estadio Nacional has a grass field.
• This is NYCFC’s second appearance in the CONCACAF Champions League. In 2020, City beat Costa Rican side San Carlos by an aggregate of 6-3 over two games, then crashed out in the quarterfinals to Liga MX side UANL 0-5. NYCFC didn’t qualify for the CONCACAF Champions League last year.
• The comment section below is for everybody in the Hudson River Blue community to use for the game thread. Not a member? It’s free: Sign up here.
UPDATE: The starting lineup was released at 7:01 pm ET.