New York City FC have yet to win a game in 2019 but will attempt to do so against a formidable DC United and Wayne Rooney on Sunday at Audi Field. Expectations are that City will have more of their weapons available to start the game with Heber and Mitrita expected to take the field together for the first time at first whistle.
“We have a tough game,” said head coach Dome Torrent in training. “We have to work hard every single training day and I say we have to play the same way in the last game against Minnesota. About the performance, I’m very happy for the performance but everybody knows it’s not enough, it’s not good enough for us one point.”
Against Minnesota City moved the ball well and were able to break down the opposition to find dangerous passes. Unfortunately, they also left themselves open to the counter and paid for it early in the contest. Mistakes were still abound as well, with goalkeeper Sean Johnson being on the end of one of the more embarrassing own goals in recent memory.
All of that can be brushed aside should City go into Audi Field and get the win. The teams played each other last season on that ground with DC coming away with a 3-1 win and clinching a spot in the MLS Cup playoffs. This season, the roles are reversed with DC leading the East and looking to solidify their dominance behind a dynamic midfielder and a striker of legendary status. New York City is the one trying to prove their worth and whether or not they have a place among the best teams in Eastern Conference.
Injuries will also be a question for NYC as Valentin Castellanos is questionable with a head injury and little is known about just how many minutes Mitrita and Heber can play. Still, the team has shown fight in the past few games despite not being able to pick up points. DC will prove to be one of the tougher road tests.
PROJECTED STARTING XI:
New York City FC: Johnson; Tinnerholm, Ibeagha, Chanot, Sweat, Ring, Sands, Tajori-Shradi, Moralez, Mitrita, Heber
DC United: Hamid; Robinson, Brillant, Birnbaum, Segura, Canouse, Moreno, Arriola, Acosta, Rodriguez, Rooney
WHERE TO WATCH: Sunday at 4PM on ESPN