Jim Curtin Previews NYCFC
Philadelphia Union Head Coach Jim Curtin spoke to the media ahead of the big game against New York City FC on Sunday evening.
The Union go into the game sitting in fourth place and are just one point off the top of the Eastern Conference. Following the frustrating draw at home to FC Cincinnati, Curtin is feeling optimistic that his side can get back to winning ways.
"It's a big opportunity for us. We've had good film sessions and good training sessions. I think that the players will have a good response to a disappointing result at home.
"It's something that's happened too many times now at home, and we need to get back to winning ways in front of our great fans."
Heading into the fixture, NYCFC is nine games unbeaten in the MLS and are the reigning MLS champions. They are a team that Curtin knows will present a very tough task, and New York City's last trip to Subaru Park will live long in the memory for the wrong reasons.
"It's a huge match. It's the team that won the MLS Cup last year and is playing the best in our league right now in terms of their recent form. It's a team that knocked us out of the playoffs on our home field last time we were there, so those things weigh into the game.
NYCFC have had a congested fixture list this season with their CONCACAF Champions League campaign and US Open Cup run. However, Curtin realises that the strength in depth that Sunday's opponents have means they will always be a strong opponent.
NYCFC's US Open Cup run was ended by city rivals New York Red Bulls as they lost 3-0 in midweek. Despite the heavy defeat, the Philadelphia boss is expecting a resilient response from the Eastern Conference leaders.
"They have such depth at every position, so no matter who they put in, there isn't much drop off, especially with some of the attacking weapons that they have.
"It's a team that has had a busy schedule, so maybe we may have a little advantage after they had played in midweek. However, I'm sure they'll be disappointed after the midweek result. Sometimes after a loss, you have a big response, so we will have to be at our very best to beat a really strong opponent."