Wednesday night will mark the fourth time this season that the New York Red Bulls will face off against New York City FC in the New York Derby.
The Derby matches are always intense, and the stakes continue to get higher and higher whenever both these clubs meet. This season especially, with both the Red Bulls and NYCFC in contention for the Supporters' Shield, as well as serious contenders for the MLS Cup.
"I think it’s not only great for the rivalry but it’s great for the league," Captain Luis Robles said. "When you see that each game not only has implications on territory, geography, status in the rivalry, but playoff seeding, supporters shield, and they’ve had a great year, we’ve had a good year and we know that it’s the rubber match. With that being said, beyond the rivalry, these games have huge meaning when it comes to the Supporters Shield."
Derby matches don't require much motivation, and according to Tyler Adams, with the way the Red Bulls have been playing as of late is a great way to go into this match.
“You always get up for these ones,” Adams said. “More than anything, I think we’re in a strong way right now, so it’s going to nice to get them while we’re hot.”
Head Coach Chris Armas spoke with media after training on Tuesday and talked about how fun the matches against NYCFC are, due to the all the challenges they present.
“New York City has a deep squad and they always have a plan that counteracts what we are trying to do on the day,” Armas said. “It is always a fun one at Yankee Stadium against New York City.”
Defender Kemar Lawrence agreed with Armas, saying these matches are always fun, especially for the defense, who always look forward to playing against top competition.
“It’s always fun, you get a really good team, you get a team on the day that’s up for the challenge,” Lawrence said. “A team that loves to pass, a team that’s good at passing, and for a defender that just sets up to show you where you’re at, and I think our backline is always ready for that challenge. We want to play against the best guys to see where we’re at and what we need to improve on, and I feel facing these guys is always a great challenge.”
One of the challenges the Red Bulls will face on Wednesday night is finding a way to defeat a NYCFC that has yet to lose in Yankee Stadium this season. The last time the Red Bulls played in Yankee Stadium, they lost 1-0 in early July, so this time around Armas believes it'll be important to come with a different game plan in order to come away with the road win.
“I think it is always important to reset every time you play a game, and then every time you play an opponent that you know well,” Armas said. “If that is the case then it is all level, it is a new game for each of us, they are starting fresh and they are 10-0-2 at home, so you know they know how to play in their building, a lot of confidence, they understand what it is going to be like in the Derby matches.”
The two teams kickoff at 7 pm on FS1, FOX Sports GO, and be heard on New York Red Bulls Radio in both English and Spanish on Tunein.