New York have won three straight games at home, while Nashville erased a two-goal deficit for a third time this season, drawing Atlanta United 2-2 in their last match.
After seven regular-season games, we have seen two very different Red Bull teams, with the home version looking unstoppable, while the one on the road have struggled, losing all three of their fixtures.
Before the international break, their up-tempo, high-pressure system seemed to work effectively against Orlando City SC, as New York scored twice against a side that before that match had only conceded twice all season.
They will have to be just as clinical in front of goal on Friday against a Nashville squad that does not give up a lot of scoring opportunities, nor do they concede many goals.
The style of play employed by manager Gerhard Struber is not resulting in a lot of possession for his team.
Still, it has been effective at home, where they were able to create many opportunities against Orlando on the counter.
The versatility of a player like Fabio has been invaluable for Struber and his side, as the Brazilian, on loan from Oeste, is second in MLS in assists with four while also playing a pivotal role on both the offensive and defensive side, a trademark of the high-pressure system.
Nashville are one of only two sides who have yet to lose in the 2021 MLS campaign, but unlike the Seattle Sounders, who have been splendid in attack and defence, Gary Smith and his side have been able to suffocate their opponents with a stingy defensive game.
As good as they are at the back, they have not always made life easy on themselves, having to come back from two goals down in three matches this season to earn points.
It seems they are reluctant to attack or take any chances until they find themselves trailing, something that Smith will no doubt want to see his side fix against a Red Bulls outfit that will test that solid backline anchored by Walker Zimmerman.
Before their draw with Atlanta, the team from the music city had put on a defensive masterclass, limiting the opposition to five shots or fewer on target in four consecutive matches.
As the season goes on, their five draws could determine whether or not this team can make the playoffs once again.
They lead the league in draws, which means they have squandered 10 points, points that could have seen them at the top of the Eastern Conference standings rather than clinging to the final playoff spot, just one point ahead of Atlanta.
Red Bulls midfielder Youba Diarra has a muscle injury, right-winger Florian Valot is nursing a knee injury, defender Amro Tarek has an adductor problem and centre-back Aaron Long is out with an Achilles tendon rupture.
Striker Cristian Casseres will be missing from this game as he is currently on international duty with Venezuela in the Copa America.
Over the international break, New York traded striker Brian White to the Vancouver Whitecaps in exchange for $400,000 in General Allocation Money, plus another $100,000 if some personal based incentives are reached.
Striker Jhonder Cadiz will not be available for Gary Smith, as he is a part of the Venezuelan squad for the Copa America, becoming the first-ever player for Nashville to represent his country in a major tournament.
Former RB Salzburg midfielder Hany Mukhtar scored twice in three minutes to rescue a point for his side against the Five Stripes, as he now leads the team with three goals this season.
New York Red Bulls possible starting lineup:
Carlos; Duncan, Edwards, Nealis, Tolkin; Davis; Yearwood, Amaya; Clark; Klimala, Royer
Nashville SC possible starting lineup:
Willis; Lovitz, Romney, Zimmerman, Johnston; Leal, Godoy, McCarty, Muyl; Mukhtar, Sapong
We say: New York Red Bulls 1-1 Nashville SC
New York have only allowed one goal in their last three home fixtures and have conceded four shots on target or less in their four home games, and they are only two points back of Nashville for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
Nashville are always a rugged defensive unit to break down, so expect a limited number of chances both ways, with two sides eager to come away with at least a point rather than risking coming away with nothing.
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