Soccer-NYC reaches first MLS Cup final, faces uphill battle to defeat Timbers


New York City FC have booked a spot for their first Major League Soccer (MLS) Cup final with a 2-1 win over Philadelphia on Sunday, but coach Ronny Delia knows his team will need to improve if they want to beat Portland in the deciding game. . The Philadelphia Union took the lead in the Eastern Conference final with a home goal from Alexander Callens before New York responded with Maxi Moralez and Talles Magno.

Delia admitted that her team underperformed against Philadelphia and that they would need to regroup for a “big fight” against the Timbers on Saturday in Portland. “This team, they don’t stop, they keep going,” said Delia, who will welcome Golden Boot winner Taty Castellanos to the squad for the final after the forward missed Sunday’s game due to a suspension.

In Saturday’s Western Conference final, the Timbers beat Real Salt Lake 2-0 to reach their second MLS Cup final in four years, with Felipe Mora and Santiago Moreno scoring the goals. Portland, who won the title in 2015, will be boosted by the return of Dairon Asprilla after the forward missed Saturday’s game with a suspension.

Timbers head coach Giovanni Savarese, who guided them to victory at last year’s MLS is Back tournament marking the league’s return after COVID-19 shutdown, said they had a strong team mentality. “We were able to bring in the right players to create a strong culture,” he said. “We enjoy being together in the ease of getting into work – it really feels like we’re family.”

The Timbers are known to have one of the most fanatic fan bases in the league and Savarese said it was a “dream” to play for the championship ahead of them. “The dream has come true and the only way it has come true is through the hard work everyone has put in this year,” he said.

The MLS Cup final is scheduled for Saturday at 3 p.m. ET (2000 GMT).

(This story was not edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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