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Game Day Hub: New York City vs Atlanta United in Queens

Atlanta will be without goal machine Georgios Giakoumakis. But will a New York City FC that struggle to score get past the second-best defense in the league?

Let it out | Courtesy

It's Matchday 7, and Atlanta United are in Queens to face a New York City FC that are opening a five-game homestand.

Atlanta are coming off a 3-0 thumping of Chicago Fire FC at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. But United have yet to win on the road this year, and they will be without striker Giorgos Giakoumakis and midfielder Xande Silva — they account for 5 goals and 3 assists out of the 9 goals that Atlanta scored this season.

In fact, Atlanta have yet to score on the road this year. They were beaten 1-0 by Columbus Crew and 2-0 by Toronto FC.

Game Day Essentials

• Matchday 7: New York City FC vs Atlanta United

• Date and Time: Saturday, Aril 6, 7:30 pm ET

• Venue: Citi Field

• Forecast: Cold, with a wind chill that's more March than April 48F/9C

• MLS Season Pass on Apple TV: Callum Williams and Calen Car (English), Pablo Ramirez and Jesus Bracamonte (Spanish)

New York City FC Radio: Glenn Crooks and Matt Lawrence (English), Roberto Abramowitz and Ariel Judas (Spanish)

• Officiating Crew: Rosendo Mendoza (referee), Chris Elliot and Chris Wattam (assistant referees), Rubiel Vazquez (fourth official), Tim Ford (VAR), Luis Guardia (assistant VAR)

But a New York City that struggle to score will still need to find a way to get past an Atlanta defense that allowed just 4 goals in 5 games — that's second-best in MLS. In contrast, NYCFC have scored just 4 goals in 6 games — that's the fewest in MLS.

Travel Advisory
• The 7 train will not be running between 74 St-Broadway in Queens and Manhattan on game day
• For travel between Queens and Manhattan, take the E, F, or R
• You can take LIRR between Penn Station and Mets-Willets Point at no additional cost

New York City vs Atlanta H2H

15 5 6 4 24 21 3

The head-to-head between the two cubs has been even over the years.

New York City and Atlanta drew twice last year. First, there was a 1-1 draw at Yankee Soccer Stadium last April, when a Gabriel Pereria goal salvaged a point against an Atlanta reduced to 10 players. Then, there was the 2-2 draw at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in June, when New York City allowed an Atlanta made up of reserves to score a 95th-minute equalizer. NYCFC were that close to their first-ever win at the Benz.

New York City

• Kits: NYCFC will be in Interboro blue.
Player Availability: Forward Talles Magno (knee) and midfielder Maxi Moralez (ACL) are unavailable. In addition, forward Jovan Mijatović is absent.
• Who will be in the Starting XI? Head coach Nick Cushing hasn't repeated a lineup this year, and in his pregame press conference he explains why. (See below.) "I think every coach wants a team that picks itself, really," he said. "And I think the only way the team picks itself is by getting into form and getting consistent results."


Atlanta United

• Kits: Atlanta will be in the red and black 17s' Kit.
Player Availability: Striker Georgios Giakoumakis (knee), defender Stian Gregersen (knee), and midfielder Xande Silva (adductor) are unavailable. All three are regular starters.
• Journeyman defender Derrick Williams has stepped nicely into the gap left by the injured Gregersen. The 31-year-old is one of the keys to Atlanta's stingy defense.
• Want to learn more about the United squad? Be sure to read Oppo Research: 5 Things about Atlanta United, in which Rob Usry of Five Stripe Final gives it to us straight.