NEW YORK, N.Y., March 24, 2021 – New York City FC today announced the Club’s 2021 MLS regular season schedule. The 2021 campaign returns to a normal 34-game format culminating with Decision Day on Sunday, November 7 at Yankee Stadium.
NYCFC will begin the season away on Saturday, April 17 at Audi Field against D.C. United at 8:00 p.m. EST. The following week on Saturday, April 24, NYCFC will host its home opener at Yankee Stadium at 1:00 p.m. EST vs. FC Cincinnati. Both games will be televised on the YES Network and streamed on the YES App.
Due in part to the ongoing scheduling complexities around COVID-19, MLS has standardized the playing windows for all teams to avoid fixture congestion throughout the season. This change is an attempt to ensure that all teams have a more equitable amount of time to rest between matches and to create a more balanced schedule where possible.
The new schedule format resulted in nine available dates at Yankee Stadium and the necessity for a secondary venue for the remainder of the home schedule; the Club will play the remaining home matches at Red Bull Arena. The possibility remains to move up to two matches back to Yankee Stadium pending the Yankees home playoff schedule.
As previously announced, NYCFC will also take part in the Leagues Cup beginning in August.
NYCFC CEO, Brad Sims, said: “We’re excited to be able to announce a full 2021 MLS schedule of 34 games, including home games in front of our incredible NYCFC supporters – as well as the opportunity to play in an international competition for the second straight year. No doubt New York City is back and we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. But we wouldn’t be in the optimistic place that we are today without the amazing work of our healthcare and essential workers. Having spoken to fans over the last year, I know many of you have been involved in these incredibly important efforts; thank you for keeping New York strong.
“As our players have said many times during the pandemic, we have greatly missed our supporters and it is inspiring to all of us that we will once again have you cheering the team on beginning with our home opener on April 24 at Yankee Stadium. We will continue to follow medical and local government guidelines and are committed to creating a safe environment – while we enjoy the same passionate NYCFC atmosphere we have all missed so much.
“We are so excited to get back to our home in the South Bronx and welcome our fans back. While it will always be our number one priority to play as many games as possible at Yankee Stadium, due to a number of unavoidable and complex factors including a delayed start to the season, we needed to engage a secondary venue. While we acknowledge that this is certainly not ideal, our ultimate goal is to win games and compete for Championships – there’s nothing we or our fans want more. Red Bull Arena proved to be a good alternate venue for us in 2020 and we are confident that it will be again in 2021.
‘’Though it makes it much more challenging for us to maximize games at Yankee Stadium, we fully support MLS’ approach to try and create a more standardized and equitable schedule for all teams and know this should make for an even more competitive, entertaining and high-quality 2021 season.”
The 2021 schedule features 32 matches against Eastern Conference opposition with two matches against foes from the Western Conference.
NYCFC will face six Eastern Conference teams three times each including: Chicago Fire FC, Columbus Crew SC, D.C. United, New England Revolution, New York Red Bulls, and Philadelphia Union.
NYCFC will travel to Los Angeles for a match against Carlos Vela and LAFC on Saturday, May 29 and then host FC Dallas on Tuesday, September 14.
The games scheduled for Red Bull Arena on Saturday, October 23 and Wednesday, October 27 could revert back to Yankee Stadium pending the postseason Major League Baseball schedule.
The full NYCFC TV schedule – including games broadcast on the YES Network – will be announced in the coming weeks.
Per the state’s health and safety guidelines, NYCFC will be starting the season at Yankee Stadium with limited capacity and the need of fans to show negative COVID-19 test results within 72 hours before kickoff – or provide proof of a COVID-19 vaccination.
NYCFC will be in close contact with City Members about Memberships. City Members who wish to attend the home opener will have the first opportunity for tickets via an exclusive Member Seat Selection on April 5. City Members will receive an email next week for an email outlining this process – including detailed videos and instructions on how to select seats. At this time, only NYCFC’s first home match will be made available. Future games will be made available on a monthly basis due to potential changes to health and government guidelines.