It’s Game Day 19: New York City FC are in the blistering Texas heat to play FC Dallas at Toyota Stadium in Frisco. NYCFC are coming off a wild 4-2 triumph over New England that included three penalty kicks and one red card — and that gave interim head coach Nick Cushing finally got his first win. Today he’s looking for his first win on the road.
FC Dallas are looking flat after a strong start to the season — they’re winless in their last five games, with three draws and two losses. FC Dallas last won at home on May 7, when they defeated a heavily rotated Seattle Sounders that had fielded their best players when they won the CONCACAF Champions League three days earlier.
New York City and Dallas have faced each other six times with even results: Both teams have won once and drawn four times. NYCFC have a slight edge in scoring, knocking in 11 goals to Dallas’s 10. When the two sides met last year, NYCFC outplayed Dallas at Red Bull Arena only to give away an equalizing goal in the 73rd minute. That game ended 3-3.
Match: NYCFC play FC Dallas
Date and Time: Wednesday, July 13, 9 pm ET
Venue: Toyota Stadium
Forecast: Sunny and as hot as an oven, 99˚F/37˚C
Watch: ESPN+ (regional blackout applies)
Stream: YES App
Listen: The game will be broadcast in English and Spanish on NYCFC Radio
• Injury Report: Keaton Parks is out after undergoing surgery to remove a blood clot. Taty Castellanos is suspended due to yellow card accumulation, and Anton Tinnerholm is out with a lower-body injury. Maxi Moralez (upper-body issue) and Alex Callens (lower-body issue) are questionable. The rest of the squad is available.
• Expect Cushing to play a cagey Starting XI: He wants the win, but the field will be close to 100˚ at game time, and the team will be playing a fully-rested New Jersey Red Bulls on Sunday. It wouldn't be a surprise to see Thiago in the starting lineup — he shines in the heat.
• Will Héber start at striker in place of a suspended Castellanos? The Brazilian performed magnificently against FC Cincinnati two weeks ago, scoring two goals and lifting NYCFC back into a game they did their best to throw away in the first 30 minutes. This will be a test for NYCFC, and a glimpse into the club’s Taty-less future.
• How will the midfield line up? Maxi Moralez might be given a rest in favor of Santi Rodríguez, and Justin Haak might get slotted into the lineup to bring some youth and speed to the field.
• The defense is easy to predict, and they’re going to need to lock down the speedy Dallas attack if NYCFC are to get a result.
• Dallas has had an up-and-down season. Right now they’re feeling low: They gave up a late equalizer to rival Houston Dynamo, dropping points in a game they should have won.
• NYCFC will need to contain right-winger Paul Arriola and center-forward Jesus Ferreira if they are to leave Texas with three points. Arriola put in a garbage performance against Houston, but the US international should never be written off. Ferreira has 11 goals this season, and he would love nothing more than to draw even with Castellanos for the lead in the Golden Boot race than by scoring against NYCFC. There’s a good reason why Arriola and Ferreira were both named to the MLS All-Star team yesterday.
• And there’s a good reason why nobody in the Dallas defense made the squad: They can't hold a lead. The backline allowed three late goals in the team’s three most recent draws, including the 90+11’ goal they gave up to Houston, negating Ferreira’s 90+3’ goal.
• The oddsmakers give Dallas the edge over NYCFC to win. It’s been a while since New York City were underdogs: No Taty, no party. As of the publication of this article, BetMGM taps Ferreira as the most likely to score, followed by Beni Radzic and Arriola. Héber and Talles Magno are close behind.
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Update: The Starting XI was announced at 8:10 pm ET