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Game Day Essentials
- Matchday 14: NYCFC vs Philadelphia Union
- Date and Time: Saturday, May 27, 7:30 pm ET
- Kickoff Time: 7:39 pm ET
- Venue: Citi Field
- Bruce Arena Forecast: Breezy, pleasant, 67˚F/20˚C
- Watch: MLS Season Pass on Apple TV
- Broadcast Team: Tyler Terens, Devon Kerr
- Listen: English and Spanish broadcasts on NYCFC Radio
- Officiating Crew: Guido Gonzales Jr (referee), Jose Da Silva and Gianni Facchini (assistant referees), Adam Kilpatrick (fourth official), Kevin Stott (VAR), Tom Supple (assistant VAR)
Matchday 14 overview
This is the first of a three-game homestead that comes on the heels of a rough five-game road trip. In that run, NYCFC took only one out of a possible 12 points in MLS league games, and lost to FC Cincinnati in the US Open Cup. There’s no place like home.
New York City have slid down the table from fifth to tenth place. Philadelphia, on the other hand, rediscovered their form after crashing out of the CONCACAF Champions League (sound familiar?), and have taken 10 out of a possible 12 points to climb up to fifth place. Let’s not sugar-coat it: Philadelphia look good.
NYCFC are coming off a cathartic 1-1 draw with Orlando thanks to an 89th-minute goal from rookie striker Gabriel Segal. As for Philadelphia? They logged a brutal 3-0 knockdown of New England Revolution last Saturday, and once again resemble the ruthless team that made it all the way to the MLS Cup Final last year.
NYCFC vs Philadelphia H2H
New York City lead the head-to-head between the two sides, but that’s largely because of the games played a few years ago, when the Union were the punching bag of the Eastern Conference.
The head-to-head was dead even in 2021, a 1-1-1 record with both teams scoring three times. It was a clean sweep last year for Philadelphia, who had three wins out of three played — including the heartbreaking 3-1 victory in the MLS Cup Playoffs Eastern Conference Finals. In case you forgot, NYCFC were up by a goal with 25 minutes left to play before it all fell apart.
One more note: This will be Philadelphia’s first game ever at Citi Field, a venue where NYCFC have lost only one game, ever. That was back in the 2019 MLS Cup playoffs.
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• Injury Report: Alfredo Morales and Matías Pellegrini are both out with ower-body injuries. There are no suspensions, and the rest of the squad is available to play.
• New York City’s last-minute goal against Orlando broke a two-game scoring drought including the 1-0 loss to Cincinnati in the US Open Cup. NYCFC have been held scoreless four times this season in MLS league games, which isn’t great. Even more concerning: The team have just 15 goals in 13 games, which puts them in 11th place out of the Eastern Conference’s 15 teams. You need to score to win, and New York City simply haven’t been scoring.
• But NYCFC have allowed just 16 goals, which is good enough for sixth-best in the Eastern Conference. (We won’t mention that Philadelphia have allowed 14, which is third-best.) Still, NYCFC have just one clean sheet this season — they almost always give up one goal, but they rarely allow two or more.
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• Will Gabriel Segal get the start? Not only did the Stanford grad score, his role as a traditional No 9 also lets Talles Magno be Talles Magno.
Predicted Starting XI
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• Injury Report: Quinn Sullivan and Jack McGlynn were called up to the USYNT. The rest of the squad will be available.
• Will Dániel Gazdag step up like he did last Saturday against the Revolution? The Philadelphia No 10 has had an on-again, off-again year, but his play last week lifted the team to their best performance of the season.
• Will Philadelphia start fouling again? The Union logged just 170 fouls so far this season, only nine more than NYCFC’s 161 (although New York City have a game in hand). Last year, Philadelphia led the league with 545 fouls.
• Looking for Philadelphia’s projected starting lineup and some inside dirt? Check out Oppo Research: 5 things you should know about Philadelphia.