Keys to the Match: NYCFC set for second match of MLS is Back Tournament vs. Orlando City

NYCFC is set to continue the MLS restart slate of action this week in Florida.|Art or Photo Credit: AP

New York City FC returns to the ESPN Wide World of Sports fields Tuesday night, taking on Orlando City SC at 8 p.m. ET.

Here are the Keys to the Match, presented by Ford.

Take Two

NYCFC are chasing a first goal and their first points of the 2020 season when they renew rivalries with their very first MLS opponents.

An opening day defeat to Philadelphia provided much frustration in front of goal, but new head coach Ronny Deila was largely encouraged by what he saw up until the opposition penalty box from his team.

Although his side couldn’t turn domination into goals and fell to a third 1-0 defeat to open up the MLS season, confidence is high in the camp and the boys in blue will be eager to put things right and crack the spine on 2020 once and for all.

Finishing Touches

The boys had no trouble finding the net in our most recent episode of Inside Training from the bubble, but they’ll know they need to do it where it counts this time.

With a new head coach asking for slight amends to the system that served the majority of this squad so well in 2019, it was always going to take time for everything to click into place, especially with such a long and unexpected break in between competitive action.

Ronny will know that such is the tidal nature of football, one goal could be all it takes to kick this 2020 season into gear, so he’ll be hoping the first comes nice and early against the Lions and that it leads to more.

Replacing Maxi

Deila’s preparations have been set back by news that Maxi Moralez is likely to spend a spell on the sidelines with a quad injury.

The Argentine topped the assist rankings for the league in 2019 and will be a big miss, but who will come in to fill the void?

Alexandru Mitriță didn’t dress for the match vs. Philadelphia and is touch and go to return, but there are plenty of other options to move things around or bring in a player from the bench.

Jesus Medina and Gary Mackay-Steven were both introduced in the second half vs. Philly and will be ready if called upon, while James Sands has also featured in the midfield in the past if Ronny decides to alter the defense for this one.

We’ll have the team news for you at approximately 7 p.m. ET on Tuesday night.

Last Time

It feels like a lot more than a year has passed since we last met Orlando in the U.S. Open Cup, such is the time warp that is 2020, but that really did happen at the Exploria Stadium almost a year ago to the day.

On that night, City suffered a heartbreaking penalty shootout defeat despite the late Maxi Moralez equalizer, meaning many on the blue side of this argument will be eager to dose out a measure of revenge this time.

Where to Watch

We compiled international TV listings, but the game will also be screened live in English from TUDN Twitter.

Last time out it was the first of the tournament breakfast kickoffs, but we’re on prime time for this decisive clash with our expansion cousins, so get ready for 8 p.m. Tuesday.