NYCFC will have to beat Real Salt Lake for the first time ever to remain unbeaten

NYCFC have three losses in their three matches against RSL but are unbeaten in MLS this season.

NYCFC will have to beat Real Salt Lake for the first time ever to remain unbeaten
Alex Ring in training this week. | Photo: New York City FC

On Wednesday, New York City FC will prepare for their first midweek game of the season as they host Real Salt Lake at Yankee Stadium. The hosts remain unbeaten with four wins and a draw to open the season while RSL has picked up seven points in their first five.

If NYCFC picks up at least one point on Wednesday, they'll push their unbeaten streak to six to start the season which would be the halfway mark in their run to a historic start to the season. Real Salt Lake actually holds the record for the longest unbeaten run to start a season alongside the LA Galaxy at 12 games.

Past Meetings

The pair of sides has met once per season since NYCFC's inaugural campaign in 2015, which will make Wednesday's meeting the fourth. Despite being a successful club for most of their time in the league, NYCFC is yet to capture three points against RSL, in fact, they are yet to pick up even one point.

A heavily rotated NYCFC squad scored early in the most recent meeting as former NYCFC striker, Sean Ugo Okoli gave the side a fourth-minute lead, but they couldn't hold on. Albert Rusnak had a top performance grabbing a goal and assist leading the comeback in a 2-1 win for RSL.

Team News

Real Salt Lake: The visitors have a lengthy injury list which will see at least three players miss the match, with the probability of more. Tony Beltran, who is recovering from a knee surgery, will continue to miss the beginning of the 2018 MLS season while knee injuries will also keep out Jordan Allen and Taylor Peay.

Both Shawn Berry and Luke Mulholland are suffering hamstring injuries which leave them under the "questionable" section of the injury report. Aaron Herrera is listed as "probable" while Demar Phillips and Marcelo Silva have undisclosed injuries to cap off the visitor's injuries.

New York City FC: The hosts will be happy to see that David Villa may return while star midfielder Alex Ring is also listed as questionable. While that may not sound great for their chances, the fans and club alike will just be happy to know the players are getting better.

David Villa may make his return to the lineup on Wednesday. | Photo: New York City FC
David Villa may make his return to the lineup on Wednesday. | Photo: New York City FC

David Villa played the first two matches of the season and hasn't played since while Alex Ring picked up an injury on international duty and is yet to make his return. Two key players to the team, it is remarkable what NYCFC have been able to do during their absence.

Unfortunately, Kwame Awuah has been added to the injury list as he suffered a knee injury which will keep him out of contention to make Patrick Vieira's 18-man squad on Wednesday.

What's Next?

Following Wednesday, RSL will get a 10-day break before hosting Colorado Rapids After that, they'll become the visitors for two consecutive weeks as they travel to face off against the Vancouver Whitecaps and Orlando City SC.

On the other hand, NYCFC will not get the break that RSL gets as they travel to Mercedes-Benz Stadium at the weekend to really put their hot start to the test vs. Atlanta United. Then, they'll take on a winless Portland Timbers side at Providence Park before returning home to host FC Dallas.

How to Watch

When: Wednesday, April 11 at 7 PM EST

Where: Yankee Stadium

Broadcast: fuboTV, Fox Sports GO, MLS Live, YES2, KMYU Utah, ESPN+, ESPN 700