New York City FC 2020 schedule: 3 things we learned

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New York City FC Starting XI in Atlanta

ATLANTA, GA AUGUST 011: New York’s starting 11 pose prior to the start of the MLS match between New York City FC and Atlanta United FC on August 11th, 2019 at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, GA. (Photo by Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

New York City FC have another tough season ahead, and the schedule release revealed how tough and hectic 2020 will be for the Pigeons. Here are three things we learned from the schedule release.

Back in December, like the rest of Major League Soccer, New York City FC announced their regular-season schedule. The Pigeons will begin their season on March 1st and end on October 4th. Both of those games will be played away, which is similar to how 2019 started and ended. Also, as learned previously, four home games will be played at Citi Field in Queens, reducing the number of games at Yankee Stadium.

Some may look at a schedule release and think it is just the schedule of when and where NYCFC will play. However, the initial schedule reveals more about the 2020 season than one would think.

Related Story: New York City FC: 3 key players to watch in 2020

So, here are the top three things we learned from the schedule release.

The outside of Citi Field.

FLUSHING, NY – APRIL 03: New York Mets fans enter Citi Field prior to the Opening Day Major League Baseball game between the New York Mets and the Atlanta Braves on April 3, 2017, at Citi Field in Flushing, New York. (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

3. The final home game is not at home

New York City FC can spin the Citi Field series in any fashion. The club stated the series was inputted to reduce mid-week games and game congestion, which is a valid reason. Hence, NYCFC had many mid-week games in previous seasons, and this move to reduce such games led to the Citi Field Series. But Yankee Stadium is deemed the home venue, and the Pigeons must revolve around the New York Yankees and their schedule. This is just another reason why NYCFC needs a stadium. The team cannot be forced to move forever.

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Nevertheless, Yankee Stadium is still considered home for NYCFC. Yes, fans can argue whether this is the case, but the team plays their home games there, and it is viewed by Major League Soccer as their current stadium. So, while they remain in New York City, and Citi Field is accessible to fans, they are still not playing at their home venue.

Furthermore, the last home game is usually Fan Appreciation Day/Night, and the team would be honoring fans in a different stadium. For some, having the last game at Citi Field may seem insulting, and this could further hurt the team’s relationship the fanbase. Of course, a stadium announcement could ease this feeling.

On September 26, NYCFC could be surrounded by fans. Supporter groups could sing their songs and play their drums. It could feel like a home game. Although in the end, players and fans alike will have the thought in the back of their mind: this isn’t Yankee Stadium, and this is not home.

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