It’s Game Day 16: New York City FC are in Ohio to face FC Cincinnati — and to try to give interim head coach Nick Cushing his first win.
NYCFC are experiencing a dip in form after a blistering nine-game unbeaten run brought them to the top of the Eastern Conference table. First, there was the disappointing draw with Colorado Rapids at Yankee Stadium, then there was the ugly loss to Philadelphia Union in Pennsylvania. New York City have something to prove, and will try to correct course against a Cincinnati that has been something of a punching bag for the Pigeons: NYCFC have played Cincinnati six times, and beaten them six times.
But the Cincinnati that NYCFC will face today is a different team from the one they comprehensively outplayed last year. Cincinnati sit just above the playoff line after beating Orlando City last Friday and drawing Philadelphia the week before. The team developed a backbone under new head coach Chris Albright, and ground out wins against Toronto FC and Minnesota United. It’s going to be hot and humid tonight, and NYCFC will have to fight to get a result.
Match: NYCFC play FC Cincinnati
Date and Time: Wednesday, June 29, 7:30 pm ET
Venue: TQL Stadium
Forecast: Midwestern humidity, 87˚F/30˚C
Watch: ESPN+, YES
Stream: YES App
Listen: The game will be broadcast in both English and Spanish on NYCFC Radio
• Thiago Martins remains out with a lower body injury, and Santiago Rodríguez will have to sit this one out because of yellow card accumulation. The rest of the squad is available, including right-back Anton Tinnerholm, who has recovered from the Achilles injury he suffered last October and came on in the second half against Philadelphia on Sunday.
• If NYCFC are to get a result they’ll need to contain attacking midfielder Luciano Acosta. The 28-year-old Argentine is the straw that stirs Cincinnati’s drink: He has five goals and three assists, and he’s a big part of why 23-year-old forward Brandon Vazquez has eight goals so far this year.
• New York City will also have to neutralize new Designated Player Obinna Nwobodo — signed in April from Göztepe S.K. of the Turkish Süper Lig, the 25-year-old Nigerian midfielder performed well against Orlando and Philadelphia.
• NYCFC will also have to contend with the weather: It’s projected to be a sticky 88 degrees at kickoff, and while the mercury will fall as the evening goes on the humidity will rise. In other words, it’s Thiago weather.
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