The New York rivals clash again on Sunday afternoon, as the Red Bulls play host to NYCFC at Red Bull Arena. For the third time this season, the pair will clash in the Hudson River Derby. Will the visitors be able to collect their first away win in this fixture since 2017?
When the teams faced off earlier in the season, they drew 1-1 at this venue, and they didn’t have to wait long to go at it again, as just three days later they met at Yankee Stadium, where the Red Bulls caused something of an upset, winning by a goal to nil.
New York Red Bulls – On the up
Like many of the established big teams in Major League Soccer, the Red Bulls haven’t been at their best this season, so much so that they’re still not in a position that would see them feature in the postseason, though things have improved of late.
The Red Bull come into this fixture off the back of going six games without defeat, and much of their improved form can be put down to the confidence they picked up from taking four points off their rivals in as many days back in September. Since returning from Yankee Stadium victorious, Saturday’s hosts have collected ten points from a possible 12. Finishing in the all-important top seven now seems like a very realistic achievement.
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New York City – In need of a lift
Unlike their hosts here, the visitors are going through something of a rough patch. They’ve won just one of their last eight fixtures, while they’re now without a win in four. Yes, they drew last time out, but it was probably hard for Ronny Deila’s men to take the positives given the run that they’ve been on, especially since it was the second straight home game where they’ve failed to find the net.
Playing on the road has presented the visitors with some problems this season. They’ve won just one away game since May, losing six of their other nine. Such a record probably won’t fill the travelling fans with confidence.
Expert Pick #1 – New York Red Bulls to Win @+160
It’s taken some time for the Red Bulls to get up and running, but now that they are, they seem somewhat generously priced to beat out-of-form opposition. Yes, NYCFC are above their hosts in the Eastern Conference standings but they’re going through a poor spell, and have already failed to get the better of their rivals, losing when the pair met less than a month ago.
If we throw in that the hosts have one of the best defensive records at home in the east, conceding a strong average of just 0.78 goals per 90 minutes, alongside NYCFC’s struggles on the road, the home win really does start to appeal.
Expert Pick #2 – New York Red Bulls to Win & Under 3.5 Goals @+230
If you’re looking for something a little juicier, then combine the home win with ‘Under 3.5 Goals’. For all their recent efforts mean they appeal at the prices, the Red Bulls haven’t been overly forthcoming in the final third at home this season, scoring a modest average of 1.21.
What’s more, high-scoring games haven’t been commonplace at this venue, with each of the last seven matches at Red Bull Arena containing less than three goals. In addition, less than four goals have been scored in five of NYCFC’s last six on the road.
Expert Pick #3 – Patryk Klimala to Score @+240
Not for the first time this season, New York Red Bulls’ hitman Patryk Klimala looks an excellent bet to find the net. The forward took his tally to eight goals for the campaign scoring against Inter Miami last time out, while he netted in this fixture less than a month ago. With the visitors out of form and with Klimala averaging an impressive 0.53 expected goals per 90, he rates as a superb goalscorer bet.
The recent efforts of both don’t exactly point towards the goals flowing at Red Bull Arena, but it is the hosts who’ve done more than enough to suggest that they can get the better of wounded opposition.