DC United vs. New York City FC | 2017 MLS Match Preview
D.C. United vs. New York City FC
2017 MLS Regular Season
RFK Stadium - Washington, D.C.
Saturday, April 8 - 4 p.m. ET
WATCH: UniMás, facebook.com/univisiondeportes
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On March 12, D.C. United visited New York City FC and left with a 4-0 loss. It marked their worst loss since Decision Day 2015 and a familiar face played a huge part: David Villa had two goals and an assist. Performing well against D.C. was old hat for the Spanish legend; he has scored six goals in six matches against Ben Olsen's team since the start of the 2015 season. He has failed to score in a game against United just once. If United hope to build off of last week's win against the Philadelphia Union, they will have to stop Villa from performing at his usual MVP level.
D.C. finally scored some goals last week — two to be exact — as they collected their first win of 2017 against the Union. They had not scored in their first three games, and broke their duck despite a hamstring injury to their first-choice striker Patrick Mullins. They still have the worst goal differential of any Eastern Conference team, but another game at RFK should help improve that number.
- Suspended: Marcelo Sarvas (Disciplinary Committee decision)
- Int’l Duty: None
- Injury Report: OUT: Rob Vincent (left knee meniscus), Patrick Mullins (hamstring), Eric Klenofsky (right MCL sprain)
Projected starting XI (4-1-4-1): GK: Bill Hamid — Nick DeLeon, Steve Birnbaum, Sean Franklin, Taylor Kemp — Jared Jeffrey — Lloyd Sam, Ian Harkes, Luciano Acosta, Patrick Nyarko — Jose Guillermo Ortiz
Notes: D.C.’s 2-1 win against Philadelphia last weekend snapped a three-game scoreless streak to open the season. They had closed the 2016 regular season with goals in 17 consecutive matches (2.2 goals per game average).
New York City FC
One of the most exciting teams to start the season, NYCFC got their second win in Week 5, beating the San Jose Earthquakes thanks to some nifty footwork from Villa and solid finishing from Jack Harrison and Tommy McNamara. So far, their defense has been much improved after an awful 2016. They have conceded just three goals in four games and it's not like they are getting incredibly lucky. Their expected goals against number, provided by Opta, sits at 3.31. Based on their quality of chances they have conceded opponents would be expected to score 3.31 goals. That number is the third-lowest in MLS among teams who have played at least four games.
- Suspended: None
- Int’l Duty: None
- Injury Report: QUESTIONABLE: Mikey Lopez (ankle surgery)
Projected Starting XI (4-2-3-1): GK: Sean Johnson — Ethan White, Maxime Chanot, Alexander Callens, Ronald Matarrita — Alexander Ring, Andrea Pirlo — Jack Harrison, Maxi Moralez, Rodney Wallace — David Villa
Notes: Tommy McNamara scored the winner off the bench against San Jose last weekend, snapping a six-game scoreless streak. He now has 11 goals in 54 MLS appearances.
This will be the 6th MLS meeting between the two sides. The two teams are tied with three wins apiece after NYCFC's win at Yankee Stadium in March.
Referee: DREW FISCHER
Assistant Referees: Claudiu Badea (bench side), Jeff Muschik (far side)
Fourth Official: Mark Kalecik