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Game Day Hub: New York City vs DC United at Citi Field

NYCFC host DC in the World's Borough for the first time, and will face a high-powered attack led by striker Christian Benteke.

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It's Matchday 9, and New York City FC are in The World's Borough to play DC United at Citi Field: Here is your Game Day Hub as DC makes its first-ever trip to Queens.

New York City has picked up eight points from its last five matches and is unbeaten in three straight. NYCFC will look to build on a 2-0 win over New England Revolution last weekend at Yankee Soccer Stadium.

Game Day Essentials

• Matchday 9: New York City FC vs DC United

• Date and Time: Saturday, April 20, 7:30 pm ET

• Venue: Citi Field

• Forecast: Cool, breezy 59F/15C

• Watch: MLS Season Pass on Apple TV 

• Apple Broadcast Team: Neil Sika and Lloyd Sam (English), Sergio Ruiz and Walter Roque (Spanish)

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

• Officiating Crew: Malik Badawi (referee), Matthew Nelson and Jeffrey Swartzel (assistant referees), Thomas Snyder (assistant referee), Kevin Terry Jr. (VAR), Fabio Tovar (assistant VAR)

• Kits: New York City will wear their "we only win in black" 24/7 Kit; DC United will wear the Cherry Blossom Kit, which is white with stylized blossoms and looks really good.

They will have to contend with a Christian Benteke who has six goals in six games. He leads a DC attack that is flourishing under new head coach Troy Lesesne, who you may remember from his time as interim Red Bulls manager last season.

Lesesne earned two wins and a draw in his Hudson River Derby meetings against Nick Cushing in 2023. Lesesne is giving DC a new look, bringing a press-heavy, direct style to the team.

DC enters this match in Queens ranked second in MLS with 16 expected goals (xG), second in MLS in shots taken per 90 minutes, with 16.62, third in MLS with 28 shot-creating actions per 90 minutes, all per FBRef.

Will a New York City defense anchored by goalkeeper Matt Freese be able to handle that much firepower? Benteke might be the joint-top goal-scorer in Major League Soccer, but Freese was the league-best keeper for the last two weeks.

New York City FC vs DC United H2H

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These teams last met in October at Audi Field, with DC earning a comfortable 2-0 win in what turned out to be the final match of Wayne Rooney's tenure as DC head coach.

That loss in the nation's capital ended New York City's 2023 postseason hopes, but the overall head-to-head between the two sides lean in NYCFC's favor.

Maybe most pertinent to this meeting in Willets Point, New York City has enjoyed a sparkling home record against DC United since beginning play in 2015.

DC has only one away win over NYCFC, which came in August 2022 out in New Jersey at Red Bull Arena. The rest of DC's trips to New York City: Seven losses and two draws.

New York City FC

• Player Availability: NYCFC will be without forward Talles Magno (knee) and midfielder Maxi Moralez (ACL).
• Striker Jovan Mijatović is back in New York City, but is he back in the New York groove? The 18-year-old striker could be an option off the bench now that he seems to have his visa sorted.
• Is this the match that finally sees Mounsef Bakrar break his goal-scoring drought? He ranks as one of the best strikers in MLS across many metrics, except for one extremely important one: Actual goals scored.

DC United

• Player Availability: DC will be without defender Aaron Herrera (yellow card accumulation) and midfielder Mateusz Klich (yellow card accumulation). In addition, attacker Ted Ku-Dipietro (thigh) is expected to miss the game. All three are key DC players.
• Want to learn more about the United squad? Ted Meyer of RFK Refugees tells us about DC United's rebuild under Troy Lessesne, and why Christian Benteke has six goals in six games in Oppo Research: 5 Things about DC United.