Sunday, August 14, 2022

Prediction: Cincinnati vs New York City

Tom Dunstan in Free Soccer Predictions, MLS 28 Jun 2022

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Verdict: New York City win

Best Odds: 1/1

Bookmaker: Unibet

Two sides who find themselves battling it out at the top end of the Eastern Conference table, Cincinnati will host New York City in the early hours of Thursday.

Cincinnati

Starting with the hosts, managing to snatch a second-half winner at home against Orlando last weekend in what was a hard-fought contest, Cincinnati will be desperate for a repeat here. However, while Pat Noonan’s men might have drawn a line under their winless run last time out, they have struggled to build off of their May purple patch. Now winning just one of their last four MLS matchups, a run highlighted by back-to-back 4-3 and 3-2 losses against Montreal and New England, the Ohio-based outfit will be more than aware that they face a tough task here. Holding just a two-point buffer from dropping out of the Final Series spots, Cincinnati should also be worried by their downbeat record against Thursday’s guests. Including a 2-1 loss when the two sides faced off last season, it should be noted that Noonan’s side have lost all six of their meetings against NYCFC.

Team News

Picking up a leg injury earlier in the month, Cincinnati look set to be without striker Dominque Badji here.

Likewise, still dealing with a long-term issue that has kept him out since the end of March, Ronald Matarrita also won’t feature on Thursday.

New York City

As for the visitors, while New York City might still find themselves firmly battling it out at the top of the Eastern Conference, they are in the midst of a recent rut. Last seen eventually getting hit with a 2-1 loss against fellow title contenders Philadelphia, the Blues do appear to be struggling with the loss of now-former boss, Ronny Deila. Likewise, crashing out of the US Open Cup earlier in the month after what was a nightmare 3-0 drumming away at bitter local rivals New York Red Bulls, interim Head Coach Nick Cushing will be desperate for his side to find a boost here. Knowing that they make the trip to Ohio in the early hours of Thursday holding a rampant record against Cincinnati, there is no doubt that NYCFC will be calling on attacking talisman Valentin Castellanos to spearhead their charge. Bagging a consolation strike against the Union last weekend, the 23-year-old has racked up eight MLS goals in his 13 appearances this season.

Team News

New York remains hopeful that 27-year-old Brazilian Thiago Martins could make his return in Ohio.

Coming off the bench at half-time in last weekend’s 2-1 loss against Philadelphia, Anton Tinnerholm and Malte Amundsen will be hoping to keep their places.

Key Factors to Consider

    • When the two sides last faced off nine months ago, New York City picked up a 2-1 victory.
    • Likewise, NYCFC have won all six of their meetings against Thursday’s opponents.
    • Each of those six showdowns have seen over 2.5 goals by the final whistle.
    • New York have won their two previous trips to Cincinnati by an aggregate score of 6-2.
    • All bar one of their six meetings have seen over 1.5 goals in the second-half alone.

    Conclusion

    Coming off the back of that last-gasp defeat against Philadelphia last weekend, there is no doubt that New York will be seeking an immediate response here. Once again chasing in the battle to claim this season’s Eastern Conference crown, Thursday’s guests should be boosted by a rather rampant record against Cincinnati. Remarkably winning all six of their meetings against the Ohio-based outfit, NYCFC also have happy memories of their trips to the TQL Stadium. While the midweek hosts might have managed to pick up a hard-fought victory against Orlando last time out, they will face a tough task here. Watching New York win their back-to-back trips to Ohio by an aggregate score of 6-2, we’re backing a similar away win here.

    Verdict: New York City win

    Best Odds: 1/1

    Bookmaker: Unibet

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Tom Dunstan


    Formerly of The Independent, Tom is a freelance football and boxing journalist from Essex, England. Currently working for three online publications, Tom is a graduate of the University of Falmouth and has spent the last two years writing across Australia, New Zealand and Asia. He can be followed at @IamTomDunstan

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