New York Red Bulls vs Austin FC preview: How to watch, team news, predicted lineups, kickoff time and ones to watch
A general view of Red Bull Arena: Photo/Mike Stobe/Getty Images

The New York Red Bulls host Austin FC at Red Bull Arena as both teams look to make a final push for the playoffs.

New York is five points out of the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference following a goalless draw against rivals NYCFC on Saturday.

Austin are winless in five matches since returning to league play and they sit 12th in the West, three points behind Portland for the final playoff spot after a 2-1 defeat to the Timbers.

The Verde and Black have not lost to an Eastern Conference team since the Red Bulls defeated them in a seven-goal thriller last year.

Team news

New York Red Bulls

Steven Sserwadda remains sidelined with a knee injury suffered in March while Lewis Morgan (hip) and Serge Ngoma (hamstring) have also been ruled out.

Captain Sean Nealis returns from a one-match suspension served against NYCFC and he will partner Andres Reyes in the heart of the Red Bulls defense.

Austin FC

Defender Zan Kolmanic is out after sustaining an ACL injury in April while striker Gyasi Zardes is listed as questionable with left calf tightness, but he is expected to play.

Joe Hafferty was signed to a short-term contract from Austin FC II.

Predicted lineups

New York Red Bulls: Coronel; Duncan, Reyes, Nealis, Tolkin; Fernandez, Edelman, Amaya, Luquinhas; Barlow, Manoel

Austin FC: Stuver; Lima, Cascante, Vaeisaenen, Gallagher; Ring, Wolff, Pereira; Rigoni, Zardes, Driussi

Ones to watch

John Tolkin (New York Red Bulls)

He's been asked to play an entirely new position, shifting from the midfield to defense, and has done an excellent job at right back.

Tolkin during the match against DC United where he scored the match-winner/Photo: Evan Yu/Getty Images
Tolkin during the match against DC United where he scored the match-winner/Photo: Evan Yu/Getty Images

Tolkin is part of a New York defense that has given up the second-fewest goals in MLS. He will also be key on set-pieces as he is the club's main corner taker.

Sebastian Driussi (Austin FC)

While he isn't having the season he had in 2022, when he finished as runner-up for the MVP award, Driussi is still one of the most dangerous players in the league.

Driussi earlier this season/Photo: Bill Barrett/ISI Photos/Getty Images
Driussi earlier this season against St. Louis City/Photo: Bill Barrett/ISI Photos/Getty Images

The Argentine has been in good form as of late, scoring three times in the last five matches and he's been involved in 12 goals for the Verde and Black in 2023.

Previous meetings

In the only prior matchup between the two sides, New York came away with a wild 4-3 win after overturning a two-goal deficit.

Ngoma opened the scoring in the 14th minute with a sizzling shot that stung the palms of Austin goalkeeper Andrew Tarbell but bounced between his legs and into the bottom left corner.

Dru Yearwood doubled the Red Bulls' advantage, muscling his way past a pair of defenders and beating Tarbell into the bottom right corner.

Driussi cut the deficit in half in the final seconds of the first half but a defensive mistake by the Verde and Black allowed Cameron Harper to make it a two-goal game again six minutes into the second half.

It was 4-1 when Tom Barlow found the back of the net from the center of the box but Austin made a late push as Driussi scored his second of the match and Stuart Finlay deflected in Washington Corozo's bicycle kick.

How to watch

The match will be streamed nationally on Apple TV + with Dre Cordero as the play-by-play announcer and Jamie Watson serving as the analyst.

Kickoff is set for 7:30pm Eastern time.