Welcome to the first round of the Leagues Cup group stage, which has New York City FC hosting Liga MX’s Atlas FC at Citi Field: Here is your NYCFC vs Atlas Game Day Hub.
Game Day Essentials
- Leagues Cup Group Stage: NYCFC vs Atlas FC
- Date and Time: Sunday, July 23, 7 pm ET
- Kickoff Time: 7:09 pm ET
- Venue: Citi Field
- Bruce Arena Forecast: A hot night after a hot day, 84˚ F/29˚ C
- Watch: Apple TV (Free), UniMás, FS1
- Listen: English and Spanish broadcasts on NYCFC Radio
- Officiating Crew: Bryan López (referee)
NYCFC vs Atlas preview
This match is more than a rematch of last year’s Campeones Cup, which NYCFC won 2-0 in the friendly confines of Yankee Soccer Stadium. It’s a face-off between two underperforming teams that have trouble finding the back of the net: NYCFC have just 25 goals in 24 games, while Atlas have scored only twice in their three Liga MX games to date.
More than that, this is a game between two teams that have lost their best goal-scorers. Taty Castellanos left NYCFC last summer to Girona FC then officially transferred to SS Lazio this week, and Gabriel Pereira made a surprise move to Qatar yesterday. Likewise, Atlas lost Julián Quiñones to Club América in the offseason, and seemingly lost their No 9 on Friday with Julio Furch transferring to Brazil’s Santos FC.
What’s better than watching two teams that struggle to score facing off in the 84-degree heat in Queens?
Note that the game is on Apple TV but it’s not behind the paywall: Anybody can watch for free. It will also be broadcast on UniMás and FS1. You have your choice of channels tonight.
NYCFC vs Atlas H2H
The head-to-head between the two clubs is short and sweet: One meeting, one 2-0 win for NYCFC.
- Player Availability: No injuries or suspensions. That said, Gabi Pereira’s sudden departure for Qatar kinda makes him a last-minute scrub. And the whispers around Talles Magno leaving the club means he might not see game time.
- Now that Pereira is gone and Talles Magno might sit this one out expect to see more playing time from Matí Pellegrini. The winger can play on the left or the right, and while he still isn’t fully integrated into the team’s attack he did score a banger of a goal when NYCFC defeated CF Montréal on July 1.
- Going to Citi Field tonight? Be sure to scope our dining guide on where to eat at Citi Field, updated for 2023.
- Now for the good news: NYCFC signed two players who might see the field tonight. New York City’s new striker Mounsef Bakrar took the No 9 jersey, and will most likely see some playing time. Central defender Birk Risa could also make an appearance.
- A second note on Bakrar: In his “First Interview” posted on the NYCFC YouTube channel, he is asked how he will adjust to his new team. He said he watched recent games, and that NYCFC “played very well, and we need to try to score some goals.” It’s a delicate way of saying, “Yo, I would have finished those chances: I’m ready to rip apart this league.”
- Player Availability: TBA.
- Atlas might have lost their top goal-scorer in the off-season and lost their top goal-scoring threat on Friday, but they still have Brian Lozano, who scored six goals in 12 games last season.
- Atlas also have goalkeeper Camilo Vargas between the sticks. The Colombian has been solid a season that’s only three games old, notching two clean sheets.
- Read more about the strengths and weaknesses of this side in Oppo Research: 5 things about Atlas FC.