The end of the Major League Soccer season will be here sooner rather than later, and New York City FC has ten matches left to play. It has been repetitive, but the outlook for the club looks grim. Likely, a miracle will be needed for the Pigeons to see the postseason.
The main problem is that NYCFC sits in 13th place in the Eastern Conference. The inability to score goals and finish out games has led to the team being out of a playoff spot. Notably, four points separate the Bronx team from ninth-place D.C. United. Thanks to the new changes with the MLS Cup Playoffs, one might think the team could climb into the ninth-place spot.
However, the other teams do not sit stagnantly in the standings. A few wins will not lead NYCFC to the playoffs. This will be a difficult task. Plus, MLS fans can guarantee Inter Miami CF will climb way up in the standings due to their summer transfers.
Before the season began, it was predicted the club would barely make the playoffs or not at all. The idea was that the roster was not strong enough; there were too many departures from the team. As the winter signings came in, it was thought a mid-table finish was possible. Still, it was known that the work to build the team was far from done.
The final prediction for NYCFC is not the greatest
Now, NYCFC has brought in more players during a busy secondary transfer window. The hope is there that the team can begin to merge, score more goals, and win more games. Ideally, Mounsef Bakrar will become the goal-scoring hero. The return of Maxi Moralez should solidify the midfield. Hope, for the first time this season, is alive and well.
Alas, this is reality. Chemistry on the pitch can take time to build. The new signings might be too late. The hole NYCFC is in may be too deep to climb out.
Therefore, the final prediction regarding the 2023 season does not change too much. NYCFC will not make the playoffs but finish in 10th or 11th place. Movement from the teams around them will cause the City Blues to miss the playoffs for the first time since 2015.
Moreover, NYCFC could win four or five of their last ten matches. The major difference will be the goal-scoring. Instead of scoring one or none, the players will score two or more in five or six of the remaining fixtures. This is probably the most positive aspect of the end-of-the-season prediction.
Most importantly, NYCFC will begin the work for 2024. 2023 might be a wash, but the upcoming year should see a drastic change based on the new signings. Some supporters might argue that the club needs a head coaching change too. Yet, the changes in the roster make, on paper, the team more competitive.
Supporters will witness some wins before the season ends. There will be hope and the team will be stronger. At the same time, some issues that plagued the team throughout the season will not magically go away. The new players will take some time to adjust to the club. Therefore, it is expected the Pigeons will have a 4-3-3 record in their final ten games.
New York City FC has work to do, but the results will not be enough to see the postseason. At least 2024 already looks brighter.