Tommy McNamara has warned of the threat posed by Sebastian Giovinco on the night New York City FC learned their first MLS Playoff opponents.
Toronto's freescoring Italian scored the first goal at BMO Field on Wednesday night to kick-off a 3-1 win for his team over Philadelphia, setting up a mouthwatering Eastern Conference semifinal.
The Canadians finished one place below NYCFC in the MLS Regular Season standings and McNamara believes that soccer fans all over the country are in for a special series.
“They’re a very good team,” McNamara told NYCFC.com.
“They only finished a couple of points behind us and they’ve just got Giovinco back who is a very strong player in this league.
“It’ll be a tough game, going up there away because they have a large crowd and a great field.
“I think It’ll be a very good two-legged series and an exciting one.
“It’ll be a good challenge for us.”
NYCFC might be on the brink of an historic match but Tommy believes that there is no reason to change anything in the build-up to his team’s first-ever postseason game.
Instead, the native New Yorker believes that the team must treat this match like any other if they are to advance to the Eastern Conference finals.
Tommy said: “We’ve just started the week but we’re going to prepare the same way we’ve prepared all season. That’s what made us successful and got us into the playoffs in second place, getting us the bye.
"There’s no reason to change too much from that – we’ll just do what’s made us successful this season and hopefully that will help us to get the result we want.”
“We’re very excited – we’re happy with the way we ended the regular season at home, clinching the bye in front of our own supporters.
“It was a high note to end the season and now this is crunch-time.”
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