Preview: NYRB II Play Lowly Toronto FC II Side



New York Red Bull II hope to snap a three-game winless trip when they make the trip up north to play Toronto FC II on Saturday night. Toronto has been one of the worst teams in the league winning only one of their last five games. Even worse, seven of their thirteen losses have come at home, where most teams hope to snag the most points.

For New York, the situation is a bit more positive. Despite being winless in their last three games, they have scored at least once in each of their last five. Toronto has one of the fewest goal totals this season and may find it difficult to respond should New York score early.

Projected XI:

NYRB II: Castano; McLaws, Da Fonte, Plewa, Heffron; Stolz, Williams, Akinyode; Sanchez, Bonomo, Tsonis

Toronto FC II: Roberts; Thomas, Kaye, Boakye, Ononye; Mannella, Bernal, Edwards, Osorio; Hamilton, Rivas

Previous Result: 4-1 NYRB II victory back on April 4, at Red Bull Arena. Goals from Abang, McLaws, Obekop and Stolz.

What to Watch: Stefano Bonomo is quickly becoming one of New York’s strongest options. Not only has he already scored in a key situation this season, but his placement on the field has been superb. He can only get better as he plays off the rust from not seeing real minutes until the summer. Expect him to be one of the more dynamic players on the field this Saturday night.

X-Factor: Drive. New York is playing with a purpose. Despite sitting in fifth place, tied for fourth and three points from third, a loss could easily see them tumble out of the playoffs. Harrisburg City has a big week with two games and has already won one against Toronto. That motivation should be more than enough against a team that is fighting to stay out of last place in the East.

New York has only registered one clean sheet in their last six games. The leaking goals have garnered them the unfortunate title of second most goals allowed in the Eastern Conference. Despite that fact they remain in a strong position to make the playoffs. However, if that trend doesn’t change, the team could see itself on the outside looking in.

The reason behind the defensive lapse may have something to do with the recently condensed schedule. The team played three games in seven days, conceding seven goals over that span. A well rested NYRB II team should be taking the field against Toronto and hope that a defensive return to form is in order.

Toronto being a sub-par team isn’t something that New York should take lightly either. The team played the Wilmington Hammerheads on August 8th, one of the worst sides in the entire league, but conceded four goals. It was Wilmington’s first home win of the season. Teams below the line are certainly capable of pulling out results and New York should be mindful as they head into the final five games of the season.

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