NASHVILLE – Nashville SC will play its final game on its longest road trip of the season with a Sunday matinee visit to New York Red Bulls II. It has been nearly a month since Nashville played a home game, April 7 against Charlotte Independence, and the trip has included visits to Indianapolis, Harrisburg City, Pa. and now Harrison, N.J. Kickoff is set for noon on Sunday.
New York Breakdown
New York has been one of the best offensive teams overall during the course of the young season, however, the stats can be a bit deceiving. The Red Bulls II lead the league in shots and goals through eight games, but have gone almost 200 minutes without a goal against the bottom two teams in the USL Eastern Conference, Toronto FC II and Ottawa Fury FC.
The Red Bulls II have been significantly better at home than on the road. In three games, NYRBII has 12 goals including two five goal games against Charleston Battery and Tampa Bay Rowdies. They will look forward to getting back to the friendly confines of Red Bull Arena after a three-game road trip which included a 0-0 draw on Wednesday morning at Ottawa.
The beginning of Nashville’s inaugural season schedule has not been kind to the newcomers to the USL. This will be the fifth road game in seven for Nashville and five of the seven have come against teams in playoff positions in the East. New York sits in third with 12 points through eight games but hasn’t lost at home (3-0-0).
While Nashville SC has scored the sixth-fewest goals in the USL with four, they have also allowed the third-fewest goals, also four. Keeper Matt Pickens and the defense have picked up the offense, earning four shutouts in six games. The four shutouts for Pickens are the third-highest in the USL. They will need to be at their best on Sunday to keep the Red Bulls II offense in check.
Justin Davis - (On playing one of the best offenses in NYRBII)
“Fortunately, our defense has been pretty solid this year so it will be a good offense vs. good defense battle. We got David [Edgar] in there, and he’s done well since he has gotten here. We have a cohesive unit. Hopefully we can keep them at bay going forward and create a few chances ourselves.”
Watching the East
With only one point in the last two games, Nashville SC has dipped outside of a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. The good news for Nashville is that they have played only six games, while teams ahead of them in the standings have played seven or eight. A win against NYRBII would give Nashville 11 points in seven games and seven points in five road contests.
The game will be broadcast on ESPN+ at 12 p.m. CST. Be sure to follow @NashvilleSC on Twitter for in-game updates and highlights.