We all kinda saw it coming. After all, we were given fair warning that the possibility of New York City FC playing their playoff games elsewhere.
Earlier today, the team announced that due to the New York Yankees needing Yankee Stadium for their own playoff run, they will be playing their Eastern Conference Semifinal game across town at Citi Field in Queens.
New York City FC to Host 2019 Audi MLS Cup Eastern Conference Semifinal at Citi Field— New York City FC (@NYCFC) October 16, 2019
READ ➡️ https://t.co/YTev7c8ZoH #NYCFC pic.twitter.com/tyUQN0b2XF
Let me be perfectly honest with all of you.
Obviously, a game in Queens is more convenient for some in the fanbase. And while my commute to the game hasn’t gotten any more difficult than it would be had the game been played at Yankee Stadium, I’m still less than thrilled about NYCFC playing a must-win playoff game in a stadium that they do not consider their home ground.
Considering the fact that NYCFC worked like hell to earn the right to host all Eastern Conference playoff games — and potentially the MLS Cup final — I find it incredibly embarrassing that City will be playing their one, if not both of their “home” games in a building other than Yankee Stadium.
People can say whatever they want about Yankee Stadium’s dimensions when it comes to soccer, whether it be about the sight lines, it’s small dimensions — whatever! I’m over it! The bottom line is that for NYCFC, it’s a bona fide advantage against visiting teams.
In the last two seasons, the Bronx Blues have only lost twice at Yankee Stadium. Back in 2017, NYCFC were forced to play their regular season finale against the Columbus Crew at Citi Field. The result? A 2-2 draw.
Is it only one game? Yes. Should it be taken into account when dissecting City’s chances in Queens rather than the Bronx? Absolutely!
If you’re a fan of the team playing their games at Citi Field, that’s fine. I’m not in the business of telling anyone how to feel about anything. Still, take the history into account.