New York City FC take on Inter Miami on Monday morning in a decisive Group A showdown at the MLS is Back Tournament.
Here’s the Keys to the Match, presented by Tri-State Ford…
Now or Never
NYCFC have not left themselves an easy task of reaching the knockouts at the MLS is Back Tournament, with fate out of our own hands as a result of losing our two opening games.
A big win vs. Miami in our final group game may not even be enough to secure one of the four third-place qualifying spots from the six groups, but it’s the minimum required if we’re to be in with any chance of staying in the tournament.
Both Miami and NYCFC have yet to accumulate a point, so will be going into this match knowing it’s now or never if they wish to remain in Orlando to compete for the trophy, making this both a regular season match and basically a knockout game rolled into one.
A First Meeting
Monday morning will mark an unusual first meeting place for NYCFC and league newcomers, Inter Miami.
David Beckham’s franchise features one familiar face to our players and supporters in Ben Sweat, who enjoyed a strong three-year spell with City before he was recruited in the Expansion Draft by his new homestate club.
While we wait to welcome him back to NYC in more normal circumstances, this quick reunion will take a back seat to both sides’ quest to keep their MLS is Back tournament hopes alive.
NYCFC for Breakfast
Whether you’re starting the day with fresh fruit or a bacon, egg & cheese, we have breakfast NYCFC for you once again on Monday morning.
Starting the week off with a decisive match is unfamiliar territory for everyone, but Ronny Deila and his coaching staff will be encouraged that his team put in a strong showing vs. Philadelphia despite the unusual early start.
With goals needed, City will be looking for a strong start with an early goal to give themselves the best chance of getting the kind of scoreline needed for progress – or at the very least, to secure the first three points towards the regular season standings.
Sunday’s Injury Report will confirm if the Inter Miami match has come too soon for a Maxi Moralez return, but the fact he’s not been ruled out altogether at this stage is some comfort for the longer term.
When Moralez injured his quad vs. Philadelphia on the opening matchday, there were fears that it could be a significant injury but in the days since those concerns have eased and the Argentine will continue his rehabilitation work in Orlando on the field.
Whether he returns in the MLS is Back tournament depends on how things progress both in his recovery and if NYC can book a place in the Round of 16.
Sound and Vision
ESPN and ESPN Deportes will be the spot to watch City’s third game since the restart, while radio commentary will once again be available through Glenn Crooks (English) and Roberto Abramowitz (Spanish) at NYCFC.com/Radio.
Before that, you can check the latest episode of our 2020 mini-docuseries from the bubble, plus another installment of NYCFC at Home with The Cooligans, presented by El Jimador on Sunday where our Chief Culinary Coach Marcus Samuelsson will be dropping in to talk food and footy.