New York City FC vs. Orlando City SC | 2017 MLS Match Preview

New York City FC vs. Orlando City SC
2017 MLS Regular Season
Yankee Stadium • New York, N.Y.
Sunday, April 23 • 1:30 p.m. ET
WATCH: FS1, FOX Deportes
MLS LIVE in Canada

All parties have moved on – check the Eastern Conference standings – but both New York City FC and Orlando City SC head coach Jason Kreis will forever be linked, due to that unceremonious dumping after Year One. Now that Kreis has Orlando ascendant in the East, this becomes a battle between the Lions' home-road duality and NYCFC's asserted home-field advantage.

NYCFC have gone unbeaten in 11 regular-season home matches (9-0-2), claiming the unique Yankee Stadium setup for their own. The Lions, for all their success within the fresh confines of Orlando City Stadium, have won only two of their last 17 away matches (2-8-7). They do hold an advantage in the head-to-head, with a single loss in seven matches, having opened the season slate with a 1-0 victory in the stadium's debut.

New York City FC

First, if you somehow missed David Villa's stunning, midfield moment of magic, here it is:

Beyond that, NYCFC have continued to build on last season's success, cleanly integrating a number of new pieces including No. 10 Maxi Moralez, a fresh Designated Player whose adjustment to New York has been both smooth and on his own terms. Yet a late-breaking ankle injury to fullback Ronald Matarrita (out 4-6 weeks) will cause some shifting along the backline, shaking up a previously settled situation.

  • Suspended: NONE
  • Int’l Duty: NONE
  • Injury Report: OUT: F - Khiry Shelton (hamstring injury), D — Ronald Matarrita (ankle injury)

Projected Starting XI (3-4-3): GK: Sean Johnson - Ethan White, Maxime Chanot, Alexander Callens - Alexander Ring, Andrea Pirlo, Jack Harrison, Mikey Lopez - Maxi Moralez, David Villa, Rodney Wallace

Notes: NYCFC are ;completing an average of 459.5 passes per game this season, the most of any MLS team. Only two other teams (Columbus – 420.3, Seattle – 400.5) complete an average of more than 400 passes per game.

Orlando City SC

You probably know Orlando have been unbeaten at home, and beaten over the head with proof that Cyle Larin is probably the best striker in MLS. But they've managed to race out toward the top of the East, holding a game in hand on most of their competition due to an early postponement, despite a slew of injuries and suspensions. Skipper Kaká is approaching a return, and reintegration will be interesting to track, given the team's success in the interim.

  • Suspended: NONE
  • Int’l Duty: NONE
  • Injury Report: OUT: D - Seb Hines (knee injury), Rafael Ramos (hamstring injury), D - Jose Aja (hamstring injury); QUESTIONABLE: M - Kaká (hamstring injury); DAY-TO-DAY: M - Antonio Nocerino (calf injury)

Projected starting XI (4-4-2): GK: Joe Bendik - Scott Sutter, Tommy Redding, Jonathan Spector, Donny Toia - Antonio Nocerino, Will Johnson, Cristian Higuita, Giles Barnes - Cyle Larin, Carlos Rivas

Notes: Cyle Larin has scored seven goals against NYCFC (six appearances), the most he has scored against any MLS team.

All-Time Series

  • Orlando have only lost once to NYCFC in seven regular-season meetings (4-1-2). They have won four of the last five matchups.

Referees

Referee: SORIN STOICA
Assistant Referees: Kyle Atkins (bench side), Adam Garner (far side)
Fourth Official: Robert Sibiga


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