The end of the regular season has arrived and New York City FC is headed to Philadelphia to take on the Union on Sunday.
Here’s Keys to the Match, presented by Tri-State Ford.
This Sunday at 4PM ET, the entire MLS slate will kick off for the final regular season matchday of the 2019 regular season. Luckily for us, the City Boys will go out on top regardless of what happens.
The Boys in Blue got the job done, with some help from Columbus Crew SC, and clinched the top seed in the Eastern Conference last week.
That means a bye into the Conference Semifinals, which will take place between Oct. 23-24, and a coveted place in the 2020 CONCACAF Champions League.
Although preliminary targets have been reached, City will certainly respect the game and work to get back in the win column.
A win on the road to wrap up Season 5, over the team that finished closest to us in the East table, would be a confidence boost and certainly add to the momentum going into the playoffs.
Re-Enter Sands Man
James is back for the second time this season.
After another major arm injury, the first-ever homegrown in NYCFC history looks to be in line for a possible return to the pitch this weekend.
Here he is speaking after a full-training session at the Etihad City Football Academy earlier this week:
🎙️ | "I'm happy to be back now, especially going into the playoffs. I'm just trying to help anyway I can, whether that's on the field, on the bench, just supporting the team." - @jamessands_16 #NYCFC— New York City FC (@NYCFC) October 4, 2019
🎥 SANDS PREVIEW 👇 #PHIvNYC pic.twitter.com/QElQZezLWz
While the Union were hoping this weekend could decide the conference, the match still holds particular importance for Philadelphia as they are tied on 55 points with Atlanta United for the second seed, where the winner will hold home field advantage up until the Conference Finals.
ATL currently hold the wins and goal differential tie-breakers, so Philly will be going all out to turn the tide anyway they can, whilst their fans keep an eye on the happenings in the Mercedes Benz Arena between the Five Stripes and New England Revolution.
New York’s depth will be on display in the final game of the regular season and it may be the young player's time to shine.
With the top seed already locked up, Dome Torrent has the option to call upon others to showcase their talents and make their case for the postseason.
As players continue to recover and train in anticipation of the next step of our journey, it could be anyone’s day on Sunday #ForTheCity.
The same way it’s been all season.
City Blue vs. Philly Doop
Philly is a short two-hour road trip from the Big Apple so let’s pack our buses and fill out the visitor section.
A key to NYCFC’s success on the road this season has been the support from our home fans who always make the trip with us.
As the Road Blues head to their final away game of the regular season, they’ll be a part of a raucous atmosphere on the banks of the Delaware.
The Union fans will show up, and you know the New York fans will show out.
See you in Philadelphia.