It’s Matchday 8, and it’s New York City FC vs Nashville SC. This is a Nashville that doesn’t give up goals easily — and doesn’t like to score them either.
The two met the in MLS season opener at GEODIS Park on February 24, which Nashville easily won 2-0. The NYCFC that will take the totally regulation-sized field today in Queens is significantly improved from the one that played that night: The club added four players since then, including Santiago Rodríguez and James Sands.
Nashville have proven tough to beat in the first seven games of the season: They allowed just two goals, and posted five clean sheets. They also don’t score much: Nashville have just six goals, the fourth-lowest total in the Eastern Conference. Those five clean sheets? Two of them were 0-0 draws.
NYCFC vs Nashville SC H2H
As for the head-to-head between the two, Nashville pwn NYCFC. New York City have never beaten Nashville in three meetings, managing just a single goal back in 2021 when Taty Castellanos found the back of the net in the 90th minute of a 3-1 loss.
- Matchday 8: NYCFC vs Nashville SC
- Date and Time: Saturday, April 15, 7:30 pm ET
- Kickoff Time: 7:39 pm ET
- Venue: Citi Field
- Bruce Arena Forecast: Overcast with a chance of showers, 60˚F/16˚C
- Watch: MLS Season Pass on Apple TV (subscription)
Broadcast Team: Kevin Egan (former play-by-play announcer for Chicago Fire and Atlanta United), and Kyndra De St. Aubin (former television analyst for Minnesota United)
- Listen: English and Spanish broadcasts on NYCFC Radio
- Officiating Crew: Allen Chapman (referee), Kyle Atkins and Adam Wienckowski (assistant referees), Ben Pilgrim (fourth official), Jorge Gonzalez (VAR), Craig Lowry (assistant VAR)
NYCFC Availability Report: Wingback Kevin O’Toole is out with a lower-body injury, and Matías Pellegrini is suspended because of yellow card accumulation. The rest of the squad is available, including right-back Tayvon Gray, who spent several weeks on the injured list . Midfielder James Sands is still recovering from a foul that earned Atlanta United’s Franco Ibarra a straight red card last week, and while he is available to play he is unlikely to see minutes today.
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Will Gabriel Segal be in the Starting XI for the third game in a row? He hasn’t looked dangerous as NYCFC’s No 9, but his presence allows Talles Magno to play in his more natural position on the left.
Will Justin Haak start in place of the injured Sands? While the Sandsman theoretically could play, he was called up to the USMNT for a friendly against Mexico next Wednesday, April 19, and head coach Nick Cushing doesn’t want to aggravate his condition.
Will Gabriel Pereira start in place of the suspended Pellegrini? You could put money on it.
Going to the game? Be sure to read our dining guide to Citi Field. There are some new options this year – porchetta sandwiches, bulgogi beef rice bowls, churros nachos – and you’ll want to plan accordingly.
Nashville Injury Report: Defender Nick DePuy and midfielder Randall Leal are both reportedly injured. Neither have featured much for Nashville this season: DePuty has yet to play, and Leal appeared in just one game.
Nashville dangerman Hany Mukhtar is having a quiet start to the season. Last year he won the Golden Boot with 23 goals, the Landon Donovan MVP award, and notched 11 assists. Mukhtar has one goal and three assists so far this year, which means he was involved in a whopping 75% of Nashville’s six goals.
Did we mention Nashville have scored just six goals? The Coyotes were held scoreless four times in seven games.
Feel free to use the comments below for a game thread.
This was my lineup for tonight in a 4-3-3, except I had Santi for Sands. I figured to plant Parks like a maypole in the center of the pitch with Santi and Ledezma on either side, and Segal in the center of the line with Talles Magno and Gabi on the wings.
Anyway, here we go. Nashville is a tough nut to crack. Scoring here could be the breakthrough we’re looking for.
(Glad we’re back at Citi for this one, too.)
2-0 against Nashville just 25′ in. Now who the heck expected that.