MLS

New York City v New York Red Bulls: Schwarz targeting 'perfect week'

By Sports Desk May 17, 2024

Sandro Schwarz has called on the New York Red Bulls to make it a "perfect" week when they visit rivals New York City for a meeting between two of the form teams in MLS.

The Red Bulls sit third in the Eastern Conference, five points behind leaders Inter Miami with a game in hand, after back-to-back wins over the New England Revolution (4-2) and D.C. United (4-1).

Just three points further back are NYCFC, who have taken 15 points from the last 18 available to soar up the standings.

Schwarz knows a derby victory would make this week hugely significant for the Red Bulls, saying: "It's a short week and we need all our players, not only 11, 12 or 13.

"On Saturday, we know it's an important game for our club and we want to have this perfect week. We have six points already this week and we want to create that. It's step by step." 

NYCFC boss Nick Cushing, meanwhile, is pleased to see his side looking more dangerous in transition after successive victories over Toronto FC (3-2) and the Philadelphia Union (2-1).

"I think my aim at the start of the season was to have us create goal chances in every phase of play," Cushing said.

"We had good moments last year but maybe weren't great in low moments, or when counter-pressing.

"I'm really pleased that we are creating from transition moments, but if we have more possession you have control and can take the air out of games."

PLAYERS TO WATCH 

New York City – Santiago Rodriguez 

Rodriguez assisted New York City's opening goal in their midweek win over Philadelphia. 

NYCFC have a record of five wins, one draw and one defeat in the seven matches in which Rodriguez has contributed to a goal this season, compared to one win, one draw and four losses when he has not.

New York Red Bulls – Lewis Morgan

Morgan, Elias Manoel and Cameron Harper have each scored in the Red Bulls' last two matches. 

The last time two Red Bulls players scored in three straight matches was between March and April 2012, when Kenny Cooper and Thierry Henry each scored in the same three consecutive games.

MATCH PREDICTION – NEW YORK CITY WIN

The Red Bulls won each of their first two road games against New York City, scoring 10 goals in the process. 

However, the Red Bulls have since won on just one of their last nine visits to Yankee Stadium (two draws, six defeats), totalling just seven goals in those games.

NYCFC have won five of their last six matches (one defeat) after starting the campaign with just one victory in seven. With home advantage on their side, they may just be slight favourites for what should be an entertaining affair.

OPTA WIN PROBABILITY

New York City – 45.2%

New York Red Bulls – 25.9%

Draw – 28.9% 

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