NYCFC vs Columbus Crew preview: Still looking for a win

Alfredo Morales of NYCFC
Alfredo Morales of NYCFC / Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Apologies for being repetitive, but New York City FC has had a tough 2023 season in Major League Soccer.  After 17 games, the team is 4-7-6, and then at home, they are 4-2-2.  Moreover, the Bronx side has not won since April 22, which was a 3-2 win over FC Dallas.

Therefore, NYCFC is desperate for a win, especially in front of the home crowd.  Looking at the data, the issue with goal scoring has been a huge factor with the record this season.  But small mistakes have been to blame for some losses as well, especially by the head coach, Nick Cushing.

However, the Pigeons will welcome the Columbus Crew, who currently sits in sixth place in the Eastern Conference, and is 8-6-3.  There have been some harsh losses at the hands of the Crew over the years. At the same time, the home team has won three of the last four home fixtures since 2020 against their opponent. 

So, let’s take a look at this week’s match between NYCFC and the Crew.

When is the match between New York City FC and the Columbus Crew?

The match will take place on Saturday, June 17, at 3:30 PM.

Where is the NYCFC game?

The game will take place in the Bronx at Yankee Stadium.

Where can fans watch the NYCFC game?

Fans can catch NYCFC on Apple TV via the MLS Season Pass.

What can New York City FC expect from Columbus?

New York City FC can expect, and again, this is repetitive too, but another tough matchup.  Columbus has won their last three fixtures, and has scored nine goals during those games.  The lack of goals from the home team makes that concerning.  Clearly if they do not score, then the Crew can easily come into New York City and win.

Fortunately, they will not have to deal with Lucas Zelarayán though, who has been a menace for the Pigeons in the past.  The midfielder has scored quite a few free kick goals against the home team, but this time around he is away on international duty. 

Still, the team has quite a few solid attacking players, including Cucho Hernández.  The striker has four goals so far this year, but also has produced seven assists.  Thus, he is a threat in front of goal but also as a provider.  If he starts, then NYCFC will have a hard task with ensuring he has no opportunities of any kind to put or help put his team in front.

Moreover, there will be a reunion between the Pigeons and Malte Amundsen, who has been starting regularly for the Crew.  The left-back has been playing well with his new team, and it will be interesting to see how he plays against NYCFC in his return to Yankee Stadium. 

Which NYCFC player should supporters watch?

For this match, NYCFC supporters should watch Nick Cushing.  Yes, he is the head coach, and not a player.  Yet, the focus will likely be on him.  After this terrible stretch, can he choose the correct Starting XI?  Will he make the right substitutions?  How will he adjust his tactics when the Crew make their changes? 

Arguably Cushing is on the hot seat right now, and he needs to find a way to lead his team to a win.  No, not find, but just plain old lead and coach to a win.     

What is the prediction for New York City FC?

It is difficult to be positive about New York City FC.  Luckily the team has grabbed two clean sheets and draws in a row, but the goals are still not arriving.  Plus, with the Crew’s recent form, one can only expect for them to score this Saturday.

But, with all this negativity, it is time to have hope and be positive.  As such, the prediction is that NYCFC will win, 2-1. 

Without the goals though, the Crew will win.  It is that simple.  So New York City FC has to put on the goal scoring boots, and give the supporters a game worth going to.  More importantly, the team must win for the first time since April.