Still without a win, New York City FC are feeling the pressure to come away with three points for the first time in 2019.
Their schedule hasn't get any easier, with a match upcoming against Eastern Conference-leading D.C. United at Audi Field on Sunday (4 pm ET | ESPN and ESPN Deportes in US, TSN in Canada).
"We have a tough game, right now this is the elite of our conference," head coach Dome Torrent said. "We have to play in the same way as the last game against Minnesota. I'm very happy with the performance, but everybody knows it's not enough, it's not good enough for us. Right now we're in trouble with the points, but I said to them that we've only played one bad game, against Toronto."
Homegrown midfielder James Sands, who has started all six of his club's games this season, agrees that NYCFC should have more than the five points they've accrued thus far.
"We probably should have won a couple of (games)," Sands said. "We have a belief that we can play with anyone. We just want to try and get the three points now."
D.C. recovered from their first hiccup of the season, earning a 3-2 win over the Colorado Rapids last weekend following two disappointing results. Now, the club expects a difficult game, even if NYCFC have started the season slow.
"One of the issues playing against New York City is how you go about pressing them," D.C. United boss Ben Olsen explained. "They do a very good job building the game. If you don't do it together, they can really stretch you out. They're well coached and well drilled."
They'll need that belief heading on the road against United, who are uncharacteristically without a win at Audi Field in two games, after a goalless draw against Montreal and a 4-0 thrashing by LAFC. It's the first time since Audi Field opened last July that the Black and Red have gone multiple games without recording three points.
"We'd like to win a game at home," Olsen said. "It's been two games since we sent the fans home happy and we'd like to do that."