D.C. United takes the battle to the Bronx tonight as they meet with NYCFC for the first time in 2023. While the teams’ last match took place across the river in New Jersey at Red Bull Arena, the Black-and-Red have never won a match at Yankee Stadium.

Could tonight be a first?

Our own Adam Taylor spoke directly with NYCFC communications to share his perspective on tonight’s matchup, and we couldn’t agree more.

NYCFC is on a home winning streak, riding high on five consecutive home wins. They’ve won 14 of their last 20 home matches in all competitions. Nick Cushing has a full-strength squad to choose from for this evening’s match, unlike Wayne Rooney, who has four important players sidelined with injuries.

Cushing recognizes the threat D.C. poses, though. He said, “We want to make sure we’re really aware of the areas where we can use our strengths. I’ve watched all of D.C.’s games, and they’ve carried the ball for the majority of those games. Against Columbus, they had more of the ball. Against Toronto, they had more of the ball, and against Orlando, they had more of the ball. They’re a really good team, and they’ve really improved from last year. They’ve added some real experience and for us, it’s about making sure that we know where they can be strong and where we can be strong.”

D.C. United head coach Wayne Rooney accepts no excuses, about the field or otherwise. He said, “We’re going to go there and play the team and there’s no excuses from us. If we don’t play well. We don’t win the game, and we’re certainly not gonna make an excuse of the field.”

Of D.C.’s recent performance, he said, “It’s been a frustrating time. as well first because I think the Orlando game for sure we should have won the game. For the Columbus game, there was some very good moments in that game. The frustrating thing for me is the goals we’ve conceded were avoidable. And on the flip side of that, we’ve created chances, and we have to do better then in the final play. We have to make sure we reward ourselves. Especially when we have good play in scoring goals, and obviously, that helps you win games.”

Check out everything Rooney had to say:

Key Player: Christian Benteke

We would argue that, as of late, no Benteke, no party. He is key to D.C.’s play. His ability to sneak into dangerous spots in the box and contribute to the Black-and-Red’s buildup makes him a standout.

Watch Out For: Matí Pellegrini

NYCFC’s whole attack is dangerous. Let’s get that one out of the way. Pellegrini can move play for NYCFC as he demonstrated against Inter Miami and be dangerous on goal. He should have put one in the back of the net last week, and we’re hoping he doesn’t find his goal against D.C. United.

Challenges: Yankee Stadium. The Black-and-Red haven’t been able to pull off a win in the Bronx. Ever.

Previously: D.C. United took all three points last August, winning 2-1 over NYCFC at Red Bull Arena. This was the first time the Black-and-Red had notched a road win against NYCFC (and we’re hoping it happens again). However, D.C. should keep on its toes. NYCFC has won four of the last six meetings.

NYCFC Availability:

Out: None

Questionable: None

D.C. United Availability:

Out: Brendan Hines-Ike (foot), Martin Rodriguez (knee), Taxi Fountas (thigh), Andy Najar (thigh)

Location: Yankee Stadium, Bronx, NY

Kickoff time: 7:30 pm ET

Referee: Mark Allatin

Available streaming: MLS Season Pass on Apple TV

Featured image courtesy of D.C. United, Hannah Wagner

BySarah Kallassy

Managing Editor

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Will Nelson

There’s the dagger. That’s game.

Talonesque #

Ah, well, bad, tired defensive play deprive us of a chance to tie it without a miracle.

Matt Glad

Dude what is happening

Will Nelson

DCU not giving up and pulls one back. Its Birnbaum!

Talonesque #

Shit, Birnbaum gets us within one again

Will Nelson

9 minutes of stoppage! Wow!

Matt Glad

I’m 100% positive this ref is gonna end it at 99 no matter how long Parks is on the ground. He’s been clueless all game.

Talonesque #

9 friggin minutes, hell, with the way the opposition have lost focus, this is a big opportunity

Matt Glad

That should be another card for Rodriguez. He should’ve been sent off twice now!!!!

Michael Carter

At least this team doesn’t give up. We just have find a way to improve defensively (on track to give up 65-70 goals again this season and that won’t do).

Talonesque #

Yep, we’re playing a bit too much like a movie underdog without the plot armor, I do appreciate that we don’t lay down, though

Will Nelson

Rodriguez should be off with a 2nd yellow after that one at least. Come on ref!

Will Nelson

Birnbaum with another great header, but puts it wide.

Talonesque #

The ref called it before he even connected, a mystery

Talonesque #

I have no idea what that call on the corner kick was, did it go out of bounds?!

Matt Glad

This ref is clueless. Even from a neutral standpoint.zero control over the game and how many missed cards!?!?

Talonesque #

Well, shit. I do appreciate that we made the NY fans cheer wildly for that result, their team very nearly imploded

Matt Glad

Honestly frustrating. Terrible first half, but DC did enough to earn a draw in the second. MLS is too spineless to give out a red retroactively, but that’s a red for hands to the face and a second yellow for the elbow in Benteke’s ribs. Totally changes the game.

Talonesque #

I know we joke a lot about Darth Garber and conspiracy, but this was a mind numbing exhibition of yellow worthy flops and petulant play from NY. DC would never get away with an ounce of this crap.

Matt Glad

You got that right! Not to mention. For being a “superstar” Benteke sure doesn’t get the usual treatment. Dude get the crap beat out of him every game and gets the dumbest shit called against him in return.


Very frustrating to watch his team because they do actually do a great job of defending when they have the opportunity to switch off, etc. but they’re so easily undone by a quick direct attack. The opposing team will have one or two or three chances in a game and they will get 1 or 2 or 3 goals.

Talonesque #

Have a bit of a different take, that DC has seized momentum and generated chances in desperate situations (game state), but are woeful at chance creation when the score is 0-0. We don’t make other teams respect our threat in the general course of the game. You can have off games, but seems we only have hyper focused periods and long spells where the opponent can pretty much ignore us

Last edited 8 months ago by Talonesque #
Michael Carter

Yeah, to that end, I think when NYCFC got their third goal they only had 7 SHs (3-4 SOG).


Also, why did they leave Bard in there so long? He couldn’t get anybody out!! Should’ve been pulled when it’s loaded bases with nobody out. Altuve was down long enough to get somebody ready.

Will Nelson

That’s a mystery. Its probably cost us going out. We’ve out hit Venezuela 12-6, plus they have 2 errors, yet we’re losing 6-5. We just left runners on 1st and 3rd. That last strike against Tucker was high and should’ve been a ball.


I’ll just say that I can’t wait until NYC has their new stadium. Playing soccer at Yankee Stadium is like playing baseball at the Los Angeles Coliseum.

Nobody would have attempted hat through ball on the first goal because there is no way an outside back would be in that position on a real field. On the third NYC goal, you couldn’t execute that double team so fast without leaving yourself open.

Touches that would normally be safely to space become numbers up breaks going the other way. Forward touches that would normally to too long and lead to a turnover become the start of a break.

Guys get injured on the high, spongy grass and the chippy stuff from the close quarters.

Nothing much to learn tactically from that field. Take the chemistry with Benteke going forward and the fight.

Matt Glad

Agreed. On to river plate. I mean New England (anyone else see it?).

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