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Matchday 18: NYCFC vs Columbus Crew in the Bronx

New York City FC face a Crew that score lots of goals — and give up lots of goals.

She's got the beat |

It’s Matchday 18 – it’s Black Excellence Match in honor of Juneteenth – and New York City FC are back in the Boogie Down Bronx to host Columbus Crew. Here is your NYCFC vs Columbus game preview and Game Day Hub.

Oppo Research: 5 things about Columbus Crew
Game Day Essentials
  • Matchday 18: NYCFC vs Columbus Crew
  • Date and Time: Saturday, June 17, 3:30 pm ET
  • Kickoff Time: 3:39 pm ET
  • Venue: Yankee Soccer Stadium
  • Bruce Arena Forecast: A temperate summer day, breezy and sunny, 78˚F/26˚C
  • Watch: MLS Season Pass on Apple TV
  • Apple TV Broadcast Team: Max Bretos and Brian Dunseth
  • Listen: English and Spanish broadcasts on NYCFC Radio
  • Officiating Crew: Pierre-Luc Lauziere (referee), Oscar Mitchell-Carvalho and Peter Balciunas (assistant referees), Brandon Stevis (fourth official), Jorge Gonzalez (VAR), Craig Lowry (assistant VAR) 

NYCFC vs Columbus preview

This game pits the underachieving NYCFC against the overachieving Columbus Crew. New York City are on a nine-game winless streak, and were unlucky to end up with a 0-0 draw against New England Revolution at Yankee Stadium two weeks ago. Columbus are on a three-game winning streak, and scored 9 goals in their last three games.

Those results go a long way to explain why NYCFC sit in 13th place in the Eastern Conference with just 18 points, while Columbus are in sixth place with 27 points.

In honor of Juneteenth, the kits will feature special shoulder patches designed by street artist Gianni Lee.

MLS drops Juneteenth 2023 design by street artist Gianni Lee

NYCFC vs Columbus Crew H2H















The head-to-head between the two clubs is close to dead even. NYCFC and Columbus split their games last year, with both sides wining at home. The last time they drew was in 2019, a full 10 games ago.

2023 NYCFC Midterm Report Card


  • Player Availability: Defender Thiago Martins will be out until late August after undergoing knee surgery. Defender Maxime Chanot served his one-game suspension for yellow card accumulation last week, but is now on international duty with Luxembourg and will return after the Atlanta United match next week.
  • Head coach Nick Cushing lined up the defense with James Sands, Justin Haak, and Tony Alfaro as a back-three. Will Alfaro get the start again? Or will Tayvon Gray move into the middle? Gray is usually deployed as a right-back, but he has central defender skills
  • The question we ask every week: Where will NYCFC find goals? New York City were held scoreless last week for the seventh time this season. The attack managed just one shot on goal: If you don’t shot you can’t score, and if you don’t score you can’t win.
Thiago Martins undergoes knee surgery
#Tatywatch: All Taty Castellanos transfer news and rumors

Columbus Crew

  • Player Availability: NYCFC fans will be pleased to hear that Lucas Zelarayán is on international duty with Armenia. The attacking midfielder has a history of breaking New York City’s hearts.
  • This is a team that scores. A lot. Columbus lead all of MLS with 35 goals in 17 games (Atlanta have 35 goals in 18 games), although eight of those goals are credited to Zelarayán.
  • The Columbus defense are suss. Injuries, a revolving door of central defenders: The 25 goals the Crew allowed is fifth-highest in the Eastern Conference, and ninth-highest in all of MLS.
  • NYCFC will be happy to face Patrick Schulte in goal after being shut down in recent weeks by Andre Blake, Roman Celentano, and Djordje Petrović. The 22-year-old Schulte made his professional debut this year, and so far has proven to be a middle-of-the-pack goalkeeper. He let in 22 goals in 14 games so far, which works out to 1.57 goals per game and a save rate of 68.9% per FBref. By comparison, NYCFC’s Luis Barraza ships 1.19 goals per game and has a save rate of 73%.
  • Looking for more insider information on Columbus? Check out Oppo Research: 5 things about Columbus Crew.
Projected Columbus Crew Starting XI: