The XI: Tajouri-Shradi Starts in Knockout Round

The XI Philly

New York City FC Head Coach Domènec Torrent has made one change to his XI for the Knockout Round game vs. Philadelphia Union.

Ismael Tajouri-Shradi comes in for Jesus Medina as the only alteration from Sunday's team which defeated the same opposition 3-1 on Decision Day.

Elsewhere, it's the same team, with David Villa leading the line in his third MLS Playoffs campaign, with support from wide in the shape of Ronald Matarrita and Tajouri-Shradi.

Maxi Moralez takes up creative responsibilities behind the captain and ahead of double midfield pivot, Yangel Herrera and Alex Ring.

Sean Johnson is the furthest back of the back five, with Alexander Callens, Maxime Chanot, Ben Sweat and Anton Tinnerholm ahead of him.

A City win will secure an Eastern Conference semifinal vs. Atlanta United with the first leg at Yankee Stadium on this coming Sunday.

NYCFC XI: Johnson, Tinnerholm, Callens, Sweat, Ring, Herrera, Moralez, Matarrita, Tajouri-Shradi, Villa (C)

Substitutes: Stuver, Ibeagha, Amagat, Ofori, Medina, Berget, Castellanos

Key Stats

  • After their 3-1 win against the Union on Sunday, New York City FC has won five of their last seven league meetings with Philadelphia (2L). Since 2015, they are 3W-0L-1D at home in MLS play against the Union.
  • NYCFC won two of their last 10 MLS matches (5L-3D). However, they went 12W-1L-4D with a +26 goals differential this season, tied for the fewest home losses and best goal differential in league play.
  • The Union lost their last two games of the regular season by a combined score of 4-1. They had lost once in the prior 10 league games (7W-2D), conceding a total of nine goals.
  • Philadelphia conceded six headed goals this year, tied for the third fewest in the league. NYCFC conceded 13 headed goals this year, tied for the most in the league.
  • NYCFC average 13.3 shots per game against Philadelphia, their seventh lowest shots average against MLS opponents over their four years in the league.
  • 16% of the Union’s conceded goals this season came through penalties this season, the highest of any MLS club.
  • David Villa averages a goal every 182.8 minutes in league play against the Union, his fifth- worst minutes per goal ratio against any MLS club.
  • Cory Burke and Fafa Picault both hit 10 goals this season. This is just the second season in Union franchise history that they have had two players hit double-digit goals in the same season (Jack McInerney and Conor Casey had 12 and 10 goals respectively in 2013).
  • Yangel Herrera lead all players with 97 touches in Sunday’s game. It was just the fourth time in his MLS career that he has had 97-or-more touches in a single game.
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