FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Winners of three straight at home the New England Revolution will return to the road this weekend when they’ll visit New York City FC on Sunday night at Yankee Stadium.
The Revs (8-10-5, 29 pts.) – who’ve taken nine of the 12 points on offer in the past month – will be visiting NYCFC (13-7-4, 43 pts.) for the second time this season.
Kickoff is set for 6 p.m. ET with Brad Feldman, Paul Mariner and Naoko Funayama handling the call in English on CSN New England and 98.5 The Sports Hub. Portuguese radio listeners can tune into WMVX 1570 AM.
Revolution Postgame Live will begin immediately after the final whistle on CSN New England, while host Matt McCarthy and analyst Shalrie Joseph will take calls for 30 minutes postgame on 98.5 The Sports Hub.
Current Form: After gutsy home win, Revs aim to translate that “battle” to the road
Teal Bunbury’s fourth goal in the last five games was enough for the Revs to grind out a massive 1-0 win over Vancouver Whitecaps FC last weekend, as Cody Cropper kept his sixth clean sheet of the season and second in the past three weeks.
“We didn’t play our best game, but we were able to still work for each other and get three points,” said Bunbury. “That’s crucial coming down to this last third of the season and fighting to get into the playoffs. We need to be able to battle, to grind out games.”
It’s those types of gritty performances that the Revs have lacked at times this season – last weekend was their first 1-0 win since last April – and they’re hoping that their fighting spirit will translate to success on the road, where they’ve gone 0-8-3 on the season.
“It’s something that we’re doing really well at home, but that’s something we really need to get better at on the road; being able to work for each other and be kind of – not nasty, but be very aggressive on the road,” Bunbury added. “At times, we’re going to be able to play, but it’s about battling.”
A tall task awaits on Sunday night, however, as NYCFC have put together an 8-1-3 mark at Yankee Stadium this season, including 5-0-1 in their last six home games dating back to early June. Overall, NYCFC are 7-2-1 in their last 10 games, and they’re just four points back of league-leading Toronto FC in the East.
Leading the way for Patrick Vieira’s men is reigning league MVP David Villa – who currently leads MLS with 18 goals in 23 appearances – but Revolution head coach Jay Heaps cautioned against his side focusing too much on Villa and allowing NYCFC’s other myriad threats to punish them.
“If you focus too much on Villa, he’s going to draw you away and someone else can beat you,” said Heaps. “It’s going to have to be a complete performance.”
Past Meetings: Revs have taken points on three straight trips to Yankee Stadium
Hobbled by an injured quad, Xavier Kouassi’s heroic effort to nod home a late equalizer helped the Revs come away with a valuable point in a 2-2 draw at Yankee Stadium back on May 31.
It was the third straight trip to the Bronx that yielded at least one point for the Revs, who’ve gone 1-0-2 at Yankee Stadium since suffering their lone defeat in NYCFC’s first-ever home game in 2015.
The Revs will host NYCFC in their regular-season home finale on Sunday, October 15, at Gillette Stadium.
Injury Report: Dielna, Nemeth pushing to be included on trip to New York
Center back Claude Dielna and forward Krisztian Nemeth both have their sights set on making their Revolution debuts this weekend after arriving within the past two weeks.
Dielna has had a full week of training with his new club and while he continues to build his fitness, Heaps said the 29-year-old defender is “definitely in contention” to get minutes at Yankee Stadium. Nemeth, meanwhile, could be available off the bench after arriving in New England late on Sunday night.
Kouassi – injured on the Revs’ last visit to Yankee Stadium – made his longest appearance since late May last weekend, playing 16 minutes off the bench in the Revs’ win over Vancouver.
New England will be dealing with an absence on Sunday, as Je-Vaughn Watson – who played the full 90 minutes last weekend against Vancouver – will be suspended because of yellow-card accumulation.
Final Thoughts: Revs anticipating a boost from 600-plus traveling supporters in NYC
“It feels like a home game when our fans travel,” Andrew Farrell said of the approximately 650 Season Members who’ll make the trek to the Bronx on Sunday. “The New York trips have been a lot of fun when our fans get down there. Looking forward to another [game of] good support from them, as they have been all year at home and away, and then getting a result for them.”