Prior to the official kickoff of the New York Red Bulls’ Audi 2017 MLS Cup Playoffs campaign, the club has a chance to win The Atlantic Cup against D.C. United on Sunday.
After defeating D.C. 2-0 in April and a 3-3 draw in September, the Red Bulls can clinch the season series and the Cup with a win or draw, and earn valuable overall points which could help come MLS Cup time.
“We want these points. We need these points, for multiple reasons,” Head Coach Jesse Marsch said. “Whenever you play your rivals you want to make sure you represent your club and your fans the right way.
“We've got our eyes set on this game as a continuing building block toward the playoffs. We want to make sure we play the way we want to play.”
New York has won the season series with United four out of the last seven seasons.
Luis Robles, who has been a part of this rivalry since 2012, said he knows how much defeating D.C. means to the supporters and hopes to pull of the feat again this weekend.
“Atlantic Cup is one of those things it's always a positive if you get it,” Robles said. “I know [last matchup] we got a little unlucky with the own goal. I feel with the last few weeks, there's been a lot of positives.”
With a win and a draw in October, the Red Bulls have rounded back into form since their last outing with D.C.
After dropping the season series last year, the Red Bulls hope to down their oldest rival in their final match at RFK Stadium and gain a little extra momentum heading into the postseason.
“It would be nice [to bring home the Atlantic Cup],” Captain Sacha Kljestan said. “[Would] love to take that trophy away from them. It'd be nice to get that back for us and the fans.”