NYCFC forward David Villa (7) is congratulated by midfielder Andrea Pirio (21) after scoring a goal against D.C. United during the second half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. (Andy Marlin)
NYCFC forward David Villa (7) is congratulated by midfielder Andrea Pirio (21) after scoring a goal against D.C. United during the second half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. (Andy Marlin)

There was little separating Toronto FC and New York City FC during the Major League Soccer regular season.

The teams played twice and drew twice -- 2-2 at Yankee Stadium on March 13 and 1-1 at BMO Field on May 18.

A winner must emerge in their two-game Eastern Conference semifinal that opens in Toronto on Sunday and concludes Nov. 6 in New York.

NYCFC (15-10-9) finished one point ahead of TFC (14-9-11) in the standings, which meant Toronto had to play the Philadelphia Union Wednesday to advance to the next round. TFC won 3-1 at BMO Field.

"Both teams have a lot of guys who can make you pay if you make mistakes," Toronto coach Greg Vanney said. "To me that's the allure of this game."

New York's designated players are David Villa, Andrea Pirlo and Frank Lampard, while Toronto has Sebastian Giovinco, Michael Bradley and Jozy Altidore.

"It sets up for a wonderful spectacle, if you will, for the league," Vanney said.

New York led MLS in goals scored (62) but was 17th in goals allowed (57). Toronto was seventh in goals (51) and tied for second in goals against (39). >> Read more at SNY.tv...

© 2016 by STATS

Tags: Toronto FC

Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) on the field during a matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) on the field during a matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

NEW YORK (AP) Alexander Callens tied it in the 77th minute and New York City FC settled for a 1-1 draw with Atlanta United on Saturday in a matchup of two of the top Eastern Conference teams.

Callens scored on a header to finish David Villa's header flick of Maximiliano Moralez's corner.

NYCFC (8-3-4) had two shots crash off the post after the 80th minute and finished the game with a 10-2 advantage in shots on target.

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New York City FC forward David Villa takes a penalty kick against Los Angeles FC during the first half at Banc of California Stadium. (Gary A. Vasquez/USA TODAY Sports Images)
New York City FC forward David Villa takes a penalty kick against Los Angeles FC during the first half at Banc of California Stadium. (Gary A. Vasquez/USA TODAY Sports Images)

If a mouth-watering 2-2 draw at Mercedes-Benz Stadium was the appetizer, the main course should be served up Saturday afternoon at Yankee Stadium as New York City FC hosts Atlanta United in a battle of two of Major League Soccer's top teams.

Atlanta United (9-3-2) sits atop the Eastern Conference with the best record in the league, two points ahead of NYCFC (8-3-3), which is 6-0-0 at Yankee Stadium this season after a 3-0 victory over Orlando City SC last Saturday.

The teams are also both atop the league in goals scored, with Atlanta's 30 one more than NYCFC's.

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Jun 6, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York City defender Joe Scally (25) dribbles the ball against New York Red Bulls during second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Jun 6, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York City defender Joe Scally (25) dribbles the ball against New York Red Bulls during second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

It was all Red Bulls in the fourth round of the U.S. Open Cup, as they took down NYCFC, 4-0, on Wednesday night. 

The Red Bulls got on the board early with Vincent Bezecourt scoring his first career first-team goal in the second minute.

The second half was when the Red Bulls pulled away. Aaron Long tallied a goal in the 52nd minute off a set piece with a beautiful head to the side net.

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Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC goalkeeper Josh Saunders (12) defends his goal against D.C. United during the second half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC goalkeeper Josh Saunders (12) defends his goal against D.C. United during the second half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

NEW YORK (AP) Ismael Tajouri-Shradi scored two goals and New York City FC blanked Orlando City SC 3-0 on Saturday night.

The Libyan winger took a pass from Anton Tinnerholm in space, cut the ball to his left foot and tucked the ball inside the far post to make it 1-0 in the 35th minute.

Orlando City had its best chance to even the game minutes into the second half. Chris Mueller was pulled down inside the box by Alex Callens to earn a penalty kick, but Sacha Kljestan caromed his kick off the post.

 

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Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward Rodney Wallace (23) dribbles the ball during the matchup with Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward Rodney Wallace (23) dribbles the ball during the matchup with Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

It goes against conventional wisdom somewhat, but it can be argued that New York City FC has been better away from the Bronx than at Yankee Stadium, certainly in Patrick Vieira's first two years as the club's coach.

In 2016, NYCFC had one more home win than on the road, with their seven away victories the most in MLS. A year ago, they had the second -best road form in the league just behind Toronto FC.

Through eight games in 2018, though, NYCFC has been downright mediocre on the road with a 2-3-3 mark. They are two points behind Atlanta United FC in the Eastern Conference standings, in large part thanks to a sterling 5-0-0 record at Yankee Stadium.

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 (Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice)
(Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice)

HOUSTON (AP) Alberth Elis scored his seventh goal of the season to help the Houston Dynamo beat New York City FC 3-1 on Friday night.

Houston (5-3-3) won for the third time in four games. NYC (7-3-3) is winless in its last five road games - with three losses.

Houston tied it at 1 in the 21st minute when Alejandro Fuenmayor headed home a free kick from just outside the penalty box. Tomas Martinez made it 2-1 in the 69th after NYC's defensive turnover. Oscar Boniek Garcia intercepted a bad pass and touched it to Martinez at the penalty spot for an easy finish into an empty net.

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Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) on the field during a matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) on the field during a matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

NEW YORK (AP) David Villa had two goals and an assist on "David Villa Day" and New York City FC beat Colorado 4-0 on Saturday, extending the Rapids' losing streak to five.

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New York City FC forward David Villa reacts after scoring on a penalty kick against FC Dallas during the first half at Yankee Stadium. The goal was the 400th of his career. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York City FC forward David Villa reacts after scoring on a penalty kick against FC Dallas during the first half at Yankee Stadium. The goal was the 400th of his career. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

New York City FC coach Patrick Vieira got the response he was looking for from his team after a 4-0 thrashing by the rival New York Red Bulls two weeks ago in the Hudson River Derby.

Now, after NYCFC's hard-fought 2-2 draw at LAFC on Sunday night, Vieira is looking for a win against the struggling Colorado Rapids on Saturday night at Yankee Stadium.

"I wanted a response from the team and I think I had it today," Vieira said after Sunday's draw. "We worked hard, we worked well, and we made it really difficult for them, so taking a point in a really difficult place is good, but when you look at the way we played that time, it's really positive for us."

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New York City FC forward David Villa takes a penalty kick against Los Angeles FC during the first half at Banc of California Stadium. (Gary A. Vasquez/USA TODAY Sports Images)
New York City FC forward David Villa takes a penalty kick against Los Angeles FC during the first half at Banc of California Stadium. (Gary A. Vasquez/USA TODAY Sports Images)

Carlos Vela scored his first goal at home and Los Angeles FC extended its unbeaten run to six matches with a 2-2 draw with New York City FC on Sunday night.

Los Angeles (6-2-2) is 2-0-2 at Banc of California Stadium and hasn't lost since a 5-0 defeat at Atlanta United on April 7.

David Villa and Ishmael Tajouri-Shradi each scored for New York City (6-2-3), which is 0-2-2 in its last four road games while being outscored 11-4 in that span.

Tags: David Villa
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Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward Rodney Wallace (23) dribbles the ball during the matchup with Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward Rodney Wallace (23) dribbles the ball during the matchup with Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

The first meeting between New York City FC and expansion Los Angeles FC on Sunday at Banc of California Stadium in Los Angeles will feature more than the teams with two of the longest acronyms in MLS.

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May 5, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York City FC defender Alexander Callens (6) plays the ball against New York Red Bulls midfielder Alex Muyl (19) during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
May 5, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York City FC defender Alexander Callens (6) plays the ball against New York Red Bulls midfielder Alex Muyl (19) during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

HARRISON, N.J. (AP) Alejandro Romero "Kaku" Gamarra had a goal and two assists to help the New York Red Bulls dominate crosstown rival New York City FC 4-0 in the NY Derby on Saturday.

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Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) on the field during a matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) on the field during a matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

The first three years of the Hudson River Derby were about how different the New York Red Bulls and New York City FC were, on and off the field.

The Red Bulls were the Major League Soccer original team, a frugal squad that built from within and played at Red Bull Arena, one of the crown jewels of soccer-specific stadiums in the United States.

NYCFC is the big-spending boys from the Bronx, which play at Yankee Stadium and scour the ends of the earth looking for its talent.

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New York City FC forward David Villa reacts after scoring on a penalty kick against FC Dallas during the first half at Yankee Stadium. The goal was the 400th of his career. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York City FC forward David Villa reacts after scoring on a penalty kick against FC Dallas during the first half at Yankee Stadium. The goal was the 400th of his career. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

David Villa scored two goals to help New York City FC beat FC Dallas 3-1 on Sunday night.

Villa converted from the spot to give NYCFC (6-1-2) a 2-1 lead in the 36th minute after Reto Ziegler was called - after video review - for a hand ball in the area.

Tags: David Villa, FC Dallas
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New York City FC forward David Villa leaves the field after the matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. (Douglas DeFelice/USA TODAY Sports)
New York City FC forward David Villa leaves the field after the matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. (Douglas DeFelice/USA TODAY Sports)

New York City FC's franchise-best, seven-match unbeaten streak is a thing of the past after a 3-0 loss to the Portland Timbers last Sunday.

Now, according to New York City FC coach Patrick Vieira, is the time to learn something about his team, which plays host to undefeated FC Dallas on Sunday at Yankee Stadium.

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New York City forward David Villa controls a pass during the first half as he is guarded by Portland Timbers defender Liam Ridgewell at Providence Park. (Troy Wayrynen/USA TODAY Sports)
New York City forward David Villa controls a pass during the first half as he is guarded by Portland Timbers defender Liam Ridgewell at Providence Park. (Troy Wayrynen/USA TODAY Sports)

Sebastian Blanco, Fanendo Adi and Larrys Mabiala scored and the Portland Timbers ended New York City FC's season-opening undefeated streak at seven games with a 3-0 victory Sunday.

New York City had won five matches and tied two and was the only Eastern Conference team without a loss going into the weekend.

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Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward Rodney Wallace (23) attacks the ball during the matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward Rodney Wallace (23) attacks the ball during the matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

New York City FC and Portland finished on top of their respective conferences in 2017, but the teams' 2018 campaigns have gotten off to very different starts.

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New York City defender Ben Sweat heads the ball against Atlanta United defender Julian Gressel during the first half at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. (Jason Getz/USA TODAY Sports)
New York City defender Ben Sweat heads the ball against Atlanta United defender Julian Gressel during the first half at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. (Jason Getz/USA TODAY Sports)

Alexander Ring scored his first MLS goal to help New York City FC to a 2-2 draw with Atlanta United on Sunday night.

David Villa, playing his second match after a three-game absence with a quadriceps injury, had a goal and an assist for New York City (5-0-2).

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Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) leaves the field after the matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) leaves the field after the matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

The two teams on top of the Eastern Conference table will collide when unbeaten New York City FC visits Atlanta United on Sunday for an early season battle between contenders in good form at raucous Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

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Apr 11, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) plays the ball against Real Salt Lake defender Justen Glad (15) during the second half at Yankee Stadium. New York City FC defeated Real Salt Lake 4-0. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Apr 11, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) plays the ball against Real Salt Lake defender Justen Glad (15) during the second half at Yankee Stadium. New York City FC defeated Real Salt Lake 4-0. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

NEW YORK (AP) Ismael Tajouri, Maximiliano Moralez and Jo Inge Berget scored first-half goals and undefeated New York City FC beat Real Salt Lake for the first time, 4-0 on Wednesday night. >> Read more

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Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) is taken off the field late in the second half of play and substituted by New York City FC forward Asad Mackic (86) matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) is taken off the field late in the second half of play and substituted by New York City FC forward Asad Mackic (86) matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

<< Read more

 

 

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Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC defender Alexander Callens (6) passes the ball during the matchup with Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC defender Alexander Callens (6) passes the ball during the matchup with Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) Maximiliano Moralez had a goal and an assist and New York City FC beat the San Jose Earthquakes 2-1 on Saturday night.

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Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward Rodney Wallace (23) attacks the ball during the matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward Rodney Wallace (23) attacks the ball during the matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) Ismael Tajouri scored two goals and Sean Johnson had five saves to help New York City FC play the New England Revolution to a 2-2 draw Saturday.

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Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) is taken off the field late in the second half of play and substituted by New York City FC forward Asad Mackic (86) matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) is taken off the field late in the second half of play and substituted by New York City FC forward Asad Mackic (86) matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

The New England Revolution haven't lost at home in MLS play since last summer. Coming off a bye week, Brad Friedel's club faces a stiff test.

New England will try to extend an unbeaten streak and deal New York City FC its first loss of the season on Saturday.

The Revolution haven't played since topping the Colorado Rapids, 2-1, on March 10 in Foxborough, Mass. Diego Fagundez scored and Chris Tierney collected the game-winner deep in second-half stoppage time to give Friedel, a rookie coach, his first league win.

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Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC defender Alexander Callens (6) passes the ball during the matchup with Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC defender Alexander Callens (6) passes the ball during the matchup with Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

NEW YORK (AP) Ismael Tajouri and Maximiliano Moralez scored 12-minutes apart in the second half and New York City FC opened the season with three straight wins for the first time in the club's short history with a 2-0 victory over Orlando City on Saturday.

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NYCFC forward David Villa (7) is congratulated by midfielder Andrea Pirio (21) after scoring a goal against D.C. United during the second half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. (Andy Marlin)
NYCFC forward David Villa (7) is congratulated by midfielder Andrea Pirio (21) after scoring a goal against D.C. United during the second half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. (Andy Marlin)

The record after the first two games of the season is unblemished for the first time in the club's short history, but everything isn't perfect for New York City FC coach Patrick Vieira.

"There are a lot of parts of the game that we need to improve," Vieira said. "If (you ask if) I'm happy with the way we played after two games I would say yes because at times we played some really good football, we had a lot of possession of the ball, we created a lot of situations and we didn't concede much.

"I think that's quite good for only two games into the competition, but we're still a long way to go and some sides of the game we need to improve a lot if we want to do well in this league."

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New York City forward David Villa celebrates his first half goal with teammates against the Los Angeles Galaxy at Yankee Stadium. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)
New York City forward David Villa celebrates his first half goal with teammates against the Los Angeles Galaxy at Yankee Stadium. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)

Anton Tinnerholm had his first MLS goal and David Villa scored another to help New York City FC beat the Los Angeles Galaxy 2-1 on Sunday.

Tinnerholm blasted a left-footed volley to give NYCFC (2-0-0) the lead in the 22nd minute. Villa's cross, off a feed from Jesus Medina, deflected high off Michael Ciani and Tinnerholm, a 27-year-old defender from Sweden, rifled it off the crossbar.

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Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC forward david Villa (7) plays the ball while being defended by D.C. United defender Sean Frankin (5) during the first half at Yankee Stadium. (Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports)
Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC forward david Villa (7) plays the ball while being defended by D.C. United defender Sean Frankin (5) during the first half at Yankee Stadium. (Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports)

In Year Three of Patrick Vieira's reign as head coach -- and the club's fourth overall -- NYCFC is considered a strong contender to capture MLS Cup in December.

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New York City FC midfielder Maximiliano Moralez shoots the ball during the matchup with Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. (Douglas DeFelice/USA TODAY Sports)
New York City FC midfielder Maximiliano Moralez shoots the ball during the matchup with Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. (Douglas DeFelice/USA TODAY Sports)

Jesus Medina scored in his MLS debut, Maximiliano Moralez had a goal and New York City FC beat Sporting Kansas City 2-0 on Sunday night in a season opener for both clubs.

NYC handed Sporting KC its first home-opening defeat since 2009 in front of a crowd of 20,831.

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Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward Rodney Wallace (23) attacks the ball during the matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Feb 24, 2018; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; New York City FC forward Rodney Wallace (23) attacks the ball during the matchup against the Montreal Impact at Al Lang Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

Two clubs that probably felt like they left something on the pitch last year open the 2018 season, as New York City FC travels to play Sporting Kansas City on Sunday afternoon at Children's Mercy Park in Kansas City, Kan.

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New York City FC forward David Villa defends against a Columbus Crew corner kick during first half of Eastern Conference semifinal at Yankee Stadium. (Noah K. Murray/USA TODAY Sports)
New York City FC forward David Villa defends against a Columbus Crew corner kick during first half of Eastern Conference semifinal at Yankee Stadium. (Noah K. Murray/USA TODAY Sports)

The Columbus Crew advanced to the Eastern Conference finals, winning the two-leg series 4-3 after falling 2-0 in the second game Sunday night.

The Crew will host the Supporters Shield winner Toronto FC in Game 1 of the conference finals Nov. 21. Toronto will be without stars Jozy Altidore and Sebastian Giovinco. Altidore and New York Red Bulls captain Sacha Kljestan were sent off after a tunnel melee at halftime in the other semifinal game earlier Sunday and Giovinco received his second yellow card in two games.

NYC's David Villa opened the scoring in the 16th minute on a penalty kick as Zack Steffen dove the wrong way. It came after Josh Williams tripped Rodney Wallace in a non-threatening position at the corner of the 18-yard box. >> Read more

Copyright 2017 by The Associated Press

Tags: Columbus Crew SC
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Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC goalkeeper Josh Saunders (12) defends his goal against D.C. United during the second half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC goalkeeper Josh Saunders (12) defends his goal against D.C. United during the second half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

After fighting so hard for the right to have a first-round bye in the MLS playoffs, New York City FC could see it all go for naught if it cannot pull off a blowout victory against Columbus Crew SC on Sunday.

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Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC forward david Villa (7) plays the ball while being defended by D.C. United defender Sean Frankin (5) during the first half at Yankee Stadium. (Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports)
Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC forward david Villa (7) plays the ball while being defended by D.C. United defender Sean Frankin (5) during the first half at Yankee Stadium. (Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) Artur started a three-goal outburst in the second half shortly after New York City FC went down a man and the Columbus Crew won the first leg of the Eastern Conference semifinals 4-1 on Tuesday night.

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Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC goalkeeper Josh Saunders (12) defends his goal against D.C. United during the second half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC goalkeeper Josh Saunders (12) defends his goal against D.C. United during the second half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Columbus Crew SC will be riding the emotion of a dramatic knockout round victory against Atlanta United and the passion of their fans when they play New York City FC on Tuesday in the first leg of Eastern Conference semifinals.

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New York City FC forward David Villa controls the ball against the Columbus Crew during the first half at Citi Field. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)
New York City FC forward David Villa controls the ball against the Columbus Crew during the first half at Citi Field. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)

David Villa scored two goals and New York City FC tied the Columbus Crew 2-2 on Sunday in the first regular-season match at Citi Field to secure the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs. >> Read more

Copyright 2017 by The Associated Press

Tags: Columbus Crew SC
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Apr 3, 2017; New York City, NY, USA; General view of fans outside Citi Field before a game between the New York Mets and the Atlanta Braves. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Apr 3, 2017; New York City, NY, USA; General view of fans outside Citi Field before a game between the New York Mets and the Atlanta Braves. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Columbus and New York City try to overcome distractions as they jockey for playoff positioning on the final day of the MLS season Sunday.

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New England Revolution midfielder Gershon Koffie and New York City FC midfielder Thomas McNamara battle for control of the ball during the first half at Gillette Stadium. (Brian Fluharty/USA TODAY Sports)
New England Revolution midfielder Gershon Koffie and New York City FC midfielder Thomas McNamara battle for control of the ball during the first half at Gillette Stadium. (Brian Fluharty/USA TODAY Sports)

Diego Fagundez scored two goals in the second half and the New England Revolution beat 10-man New York City FC 2-1 on Sunday.

New England (12-15-6) set a club record with 12 wins at home. NYC (16-9-8) had several possibilities to clinch a bye in the playoffs but needed at least a draw. >> Read more

Copyright 2017 by the Associated Press

Tags: New England Revolution
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 ( Adam Hunger)
( Adam Hunger)

New York City FC has a date with the New England Revolution on Sunday in Foxborough, Mass., but keeping their minds off Atlanta United might be challenging.

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Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC goalkeeper Josh Saunders (12) defends his goal against D.C. United during the second half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC goalkeeper Josh Saunders (12) defends his goal against D.C. United during the second half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. (AP) David Villa tied it in the 43rd minute with his 20th goal of the season and New York City FC held on for a 1-1 draw with the Chicago Fire on Saturday night.

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Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC forward david Villa (7) plays the ball while being defended by D.C. United defender Sean Frankin (5) during the first half at Yankee Stadium. (Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports)
Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC forward david Villa (7) plays the ball while being defended by D.C. United defender Sean Frankin (5) during the first half at Yankee Stadium. (Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports)

The Chicago Fire will play in Major League Soccer's postseason for the first time since 2012, but they don't plan to coast through the final three regular season games.

Chicago (15-10-6, 51 points) is currently fourth in the Eastern Conference standings heading into Saturday's game against the New York City FC at Toyota Park in Chicago.

In the teams' second meeting this season, the Fire hope to make up ground on New York City as they shoot for a higher seed in the upcoming MLS playoffs.

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 (Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports)
(Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports)

MONTREAL (AP) Jack Harrison scored in the 10th minute and New York City FC held on to beat the Montreal Impact 1-0 on Wednesday night.

The 20-year-old Harrison fired a bouncing ball past Evan Bush into the top corner from a tricky angle for his 10th goal.

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 (Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports)
(Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports)

New York City FC is locked in for the MLS playoffs. The Montreal Impact are still holding out hope that they can sneak in.

To do so, it's three points or bust for the Impact when they host NYCFC on Wednesday night at Saputo Stadium.

Tags: Montreal Impact
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Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC midfielder Andrea Pirio (21) attempts a corner kick against D.C. United during the first half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC midfielder Andrea Pirio (21) attempts a corner kick against D.C. United during the first half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

EAST HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) New York's Maximiliano Moralez and Houston's Mauro Manotas scored early goals and the Dynamo and NYCFC battled to a 1-1 draw on Saturday.

The game was moved to Pratt & Whitney Stadium because of a scheduling conflict at Yankee Stadium.

Moralez picked up his fifth goal in the sixth minute when he flicked a header inside the near post off a perfect service from the right side by Andraz Struna. Just 10 minutes later Manotas tallied his ninth after a quick restart just outside the top of the box, chipping the ball past New York keeper Sean Johnson.

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Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC forward david Villa (7) plays the ball while being defended by D.C. United defender Sean Frankin (5) during the first half at Yankee Stadium. (Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports)
Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC forward david Villa (7) plays the ball while being defended by D.C. United defender Sean Frankin (5) during the first half at Yankee Stadium. (Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports)

COMMERCE CITY, Colo. (AP) Dominique Badji scored in the 88th minute to give the Colorado Rapids a 1-1 tie with New York City FC on Saturday night.

Thomas McNamara opened the scoring for NYC (15-8-6) in the 19th minute. He slipped past a defender after receiving Andrea Pirlo's pass near midfield and smashed a driving blast into the top right corner from 25 yards.

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Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC midfielder Andrea Pirio (21) attempts a corner kick against D.C. United during the first half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC midfielder Andrea Pirio (21) attempts a corner kick against D.C. United during the first half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

New York City FC may be without David Villa, their leading scorer and the reigning MLS MVP, for a third straight match when they meet the Colorado Rapids on Saturday at Dick's Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colorado.

Villa, who owns a league-leading 19 goals, has been out with an abductor irritation he suffered while training with the Spanish National Team. NYCFC (15-8-5) is 1-1 without him, but scored just once in those matches.

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New York City FC goalkeeper Sean Johnson is unable to stop a free kick by Toronto FC forward Sebastian Giovinco in the second half during a game at BMO Field. (Nick Turchiaro/USA TODAY Sports)
New York City FC goalkeeper Sean Johnson is unable to stop a free kick by Toronto FC forward Sebastian Giovinco in the second half during a game at BMO Field. (Nick Turchiaro/USA TODAY Sports)

Diego Valeri scored in his seventh straight game to tie the MLS record and help the Portland Timbers beat New York City FC 1-0 on Saturday.

Valeri tied the goal mark set by Raul Diaz Arce in 1997 and matched by Wolde Harris in 2000 and Carlos Ruiz in 2006.

Valeri scored in the 44th minute. He has 17 goals this season.

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Sep 6, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York City FC midfielder Jack Harrison (11) celebrates with teammates against Sporting Kansas City during the second half at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports  (Vincent Carchietta)
Sep 6, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York City FC midfielder Jack Harrison (11) celebrates with teammates against Sporting Kansas City during the second half at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

Jack Harrison scored his ninth goal of the season in the 84th minute, helping New York City FC beat Sporting Kansas City 1-0 on a rainy Wednesday night.

New York City (15-7-5) is 8-0-2 in its last 10 home games. Kansas City (10-6-10) has only won once in its last 10 regular-season road games.

Earlier in NYC's winning possession, Tim Melia punched away Thomas McNamara's shot and RJ Allen tracked down the loose ball near the sideline. Harrison chested down Allen's cross near the penalty spot and volleyed it home.

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

New York City FC couldn't secure a victory as they played the New York Red Bulls to a draw in the NY Derby, 1-1, at Red Bull Arena Friday night. 

NYCFC got on the scoreboard first as David Villa found Maxi Moralez in the box to score in the 56th minute. It was Moralez's fourth goal of the year. 

However, the Red Bulls would tie things up after Sacha Kljestan earned a penalty kick in the 70th minute. Gonzalo Veron would convert the shot to tie the game up. 

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New York City FC forward David Villa plays the ball against New England Revolution defender Claude Dielna during the first half at Yankee Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)
New York City FC forward David Villa plays the ball against New England Revolution defender Claude Dielna during the first half at Yankee Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)

Jonathan Lewis scored in stoppage time to help New York City FC beat the New England Revolution 2-1 on Sunday for its third straight victory.

The 20-year-old rookie has scored his only two MLS goals in back-to-back games.

David Villa trapped a long cross from RJ Allen on the left side and dropped it to Ben Sweat, who first-timed a left footer to Lewis at the top of the 6-yard box for the finish in the fourth minute of injury time. >> Read more

Copyright 2017 by the Associated Press

Tags: David Villa, New England Revolution
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Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC midfielder Andrea Pirio (21) attempts a corner kick against D.C. United during the first half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Sep 1, 2016; New York, NY, USA; NYCFC midfielder Andrea Pirio (21) attempts a corner kick against D.C. United during the first half at Yankee Stadium. NYCFC won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

New York City FC will look to continue a late push toward the top of the Eastern Conference standings when it welcomes the New England Revolution to Yankee Stadium on Sunday evening.

New York City (13-7-4, 43 points) is arguably the hottest team in the league after winning their seventh match in 10 games last weekend, a 2-0 victory at the Los Angeles Galaxy that included a sparkling first goal from 20-year-old rookie Jonathan Lewis.

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