Match Preview: New York City FC vs. Atlanta United Sunday, July 3, 2022

Atlanta United concludes its three-match away trip on Sunday with a meeting against reigning MLS Cup champion New York City FC. Kickoff is scheduled for 5:00 p.m. ET.

Atlanta United is coming off a tough 2-1 loss to New York Red Bulls at Red Bull Arena. The 5-Stripes played well for most of the match but conceded two late goals including one in the 89th minute to 16-year-old forward Serge Ngoma.

The team will be without midfielder Franco Ibarra. The 21-year-old from Argentina has started eight matches this season for Atlanta United but will miss Sunday's match due to yellow card accumulation.

However, Atlanta United will be getting a boost in the form of Thiago Almada. The midfielder missed all of June serving a suspension for a red card and will be eligible to play on Sunday. In 11 matches played for Atlanta United, Almada has scored three goals, recorded two assists and been named to the MLS Team of the Week twice.

Thiago-Almada-_Training-Before-NYCFC

Matchday Conditions  

The conditions at Yankee Stadium are expected to be very warm. The forecast at kickoff is sunny with a high temperature around 86 degrees Fahrenheit.  

New York City FC, the 2021 MLS Cup Champions 

New York City FC is an Eastern Conference club based in the Bronx area of New York. NYCFC was announced as the league’s 20th expansion club in 2013 and began play league play in 2015. The club is one of two based in the metropolitan New York area, the other being New York Red Bulls, which Atlanta United played on Thursday. 

New York City FC are the reigning league champions. The club won the MLS Cup in 2021, beating Portland Timbers in a shootout. It was the first MLS Cup title for a club based in New York. 

  • Home venue: Yankee Stadium, which the club shares with MLB team New York Yankees 
  • Main colors: light blue, dark blue, white 
  • Interim head coach: Nick Cushing 

Atlanta United In Search Of A Road Result 

Atlanta United and New York City FC have met 11 times in MLS play and the all-time series is split evenly with both clubs getting four wins each plus three draws. 

Atlanta will be looking to right the ship on Sunday, coming off back-to-back losses on the road against Toronto FC and New York Red Bulls. However, the 5-Stripes face a tall task going up against the defending MLS Cup champions. Atlanta United has never beaten New York City FC on the road in the MLS regular season. 

The last meeting between the two sides was in November 2021 in the first round of the MLS Cup Playoffs. NYCFC beat Atlanta United 2-0 at Yankee Stadium on their way to securing the league title.

LastMeeting_ATLatNYC_2021

Creating Chances 

Atlanta United and New York City FC enter Sunday’s match coming off different results. In their midweek matches, Atlanta United conceded two late goals and lost 2-1 to New York Red Bulls. On the other side, New York City rallied from three goals behind to draw FC Cincinnati 4-4 on the road. 

Atlanta United is in 11th place in the Eastern Conference table with 19 points (5-7-4). The Red Bulls’ win over Atlanta dropped New York City FC a few spots in the standings, but NYCFC remains one of the conference leaders, currently holding the fourth-place spot with 28 points (8-4-4). 

This will be a different kind of match than what Atlanta United saw on Thursday. New York City, much like Atlanta, likes to control possession. The clubs are among the best in the league at creating chances and possession, ranking in the top three in both categories.

Key 2022 Stats and League Ranking
New York City FC
Atlanta United
Possession
59.3% (2nd)
59.1% (3rd)
Pass Percentage
83.1% (8th)
85.2% (1st)
Key Passes
171 (2nd)
178 (1st)
Clean Sheets
8
3

Players To Watch 

Josef Martínez – He came on as a sub in Thursday’s match against New York Red Bulls and made history, scoring the club’s first-ever goal at Red Bull Arena. The goal pulled him even with teammates Ronaldo Cisneros and Luiz Araújo for scoring leaders in MLS play this season for Atlanta United. In his career Martínez has scored five goals in seven MLS matches against NYCFC including the playoffs and may have more chances if he returns to the starting XI on Sunday.

JosefMartinez-LuizAraujo_ATLatNYRB

Maxi Moralez – The attacking midfielder from Argentina is one of the best creators in the league. He assisted three of New York City FC’s four goals against Cincinnati on Wednesday, bringing his total on the season to six and also equaling the most assists in a single MLS match in team history. The performance marked the first time an NYCFC player recorded three assists in a match twice, also doing so against Cincinnati in 2019. 

Other Tidbits 

  • Atlanta United will be wearing the BLVCK Kit on Sunday.