NYCFC vs New York Red Bulls Preview, Picks, Betting Predictions

Lewis MorganOne of the highlights of the Major League Soccer calendar takes place on Saturday (7.30pm ET). That’s right, it’s time for the New York Derby as NYCFC hosts New York Red Bulls in the Bronx. Can the hosts extend their winning run? Or will the visitors cause an upset and add to their own winning streak? This MLS game preview with its betting predictions and picks aims to clear that up.

It has been a very good month for NYCFC, who come into this derby game in fine form having won each of their last two fixtures. They bounced back to winning ways with their away-day win over Toronto at BMO Field, before getting out on the road once more, returning to the Bronx with another big three points thanks to a 1-2 victory against the Philadelphia Union. The hosts have now won five of their last six, which should mean that they approach this huge fixture full of confidence.

The visitors will also go to Yankee Stadium feeling confident as they too have developed a taste for picking up maximum points in recent weeks. Following their rather humbling defeat away to Inter Miami, where they were picked apart by the genius of Lionel Messi, the Red Bulls bounced back to beat the New England Revolution in high-scoring fashion at Red Bull Arena. Then they picked up an away win on Thursday night, beating D.C. United 1-4. Having warmed up with those two wins, stepping on the gas in the final third, Sandro Schwarz’s men will surely fancy themselves to do well here.

Hosts NYCFC improving in the final third

Back at the start of the campaign, the NYCFC squad were struggling a little in the final third, but things have certainly started to click for Nick Cushing’s men, who have scored five goals in their last two games, as well as 11 in their last six. Santiago Rodriguez continues to be a real threat, scoring five and providing two assists, with three of those goals and one of those assists coming in his last seven.

Hannes Wolf, who was previously struggling to find his feet, is now starting to thrive too, scoring and assisting twice in his last two appearances. Throw Alonso Martinez and Talles Magno, who is now fit again, into the mix and Saturday’s hosts look to have quite a strong attack, one that could easily do some damage in this fixture.

Visitors RBNY also looking strong up top

NYCFC are not the only ones in fine offensive form. NYRB have been banging in the goals for fun of late and they too look to be quite stacked in terms of final-third quality. It certainly didn’t take a genius to predict that Emile Forsberg would thrive in MLS and the Swede has certainly done that, scoring four and assisting five in 11 appearances since his switch from RB Leipzig.

Lewis Morgan, who sadly missed most of the previous campaign through injury, has picked up where he left off in 2022, scoring for fun, notching nine goals already. With two assists and three goals, Elias Manoel compliments the previously mentioned pair in attack, and it is fair to say that Red Bulls have the tools to hurt just about anyone.

Red Bulls toughing it out in recent times

Recent renewals of this fixture have proved to be fruitless for NYCFC, who have won none of the last three renewals, failing to score during that time. The Red Bulls have won two of those three games, recording a pair of 1-0 home wins in 2023. When the teams last met at this venue they drew 0-0. This will be the first time that the rivals have met this season.

Goals incoming at Yankee Stadium

Sure, in recent times, this fixture has been low-scoring, with just two goals being scored in the three renewals in 2023. However, a goal-filled game appeals this time around. First and foremost, the way that this new-look NYRB team plays simply lends itself to high-scoring games. Three or more goals have been scored in each of the Red Bulls’ last three fixtures.

This preview cannot ignore the fact that both teams have been in fine offensive form over the last few weeks. Since the round of games that took place on April 14, the hosts have scored a pleasing average of 1.83 goals per game, while the Red Bulls have also scored an average of 1.83 during that time.

Moreover, it bodes well that in their last five games, the hosts have posted an average of 1.65 expected goals, while the visitors, in their last five games, have created an average of 1.53. It’s also worth mentioning that six of the Red Bull’s last seven away games in Major League Soccer have produced three or more goals. They have kept just one clean sheet during that time, scoring in seven out of seven.

Morgan to make it ten

Four players currently have more goals this season, but there’s hardly been a more threatening forward in Major League Soccer than Lewis Morgan. Considering that the Scotsman, who rarely needs asking twice to find the back of the net, has scored an average of 0.76 goals per 90 minutes this term, odds with the best USA bookies look a little generous.

Morgan arrives in hot form having scored in each of his last two and nine in total. He has looked hungry of late, shooting no less than 13 times in his last three games. We know he will get on the end of things, and we know he’ll fire shots off at Yankee Stadium, so don’t be surprised if he gets on the scoresheet.

So the betting predictions and picks for this NYCFC vs RBNY New York Derby MLS game are: