New York City FC rested, ready for quick, cross-country road challenge

Following a hard-earned week off after three straight shutout wins in a week’s span, New York City FC hits the road for two far-flung matches in four days.

The Blues open the slate at their expansion rivals Orlando City SC on Thursday night and follow that with a cross-country match at the Seattle Sounders on Sunday evening.

While momentum is on NYCFC’s side heading into the weekend, the club may get more support in the attack with all three key forwards — David Villa, Jo Inge Berget and Ismael Tajouri-Shradi — potentially returning to the lineup. However, head coach Domenec Torrent won’t say if any or all three will return Thursday.

“I’m not sure right now because the most important thing is to ask our doctor about that,” Torrent said to the media after Monday’s training session, “but David is in the second training session with the whole team. I think maybe he’s ready to play the next game, but I’m not sure in the moment. It’s the same with Jo and Ismael.”

NYCFC (12-4-4, 40 points) has won five of their last seven matches, highlighted by four clean sheets with just five goals allowed through the span. The Blues have conceded just 24 goals total this season, fourth-best in MLS.

However, NYCFC has struggled on the road this season, winning just twice away from the Bronx with their last road win coming at San Jose back in March.

On the other hand, despite Orlando City’s struggles this season — losing 10 of their last 11 matches — the Lions (7-12-1, 22 points) are 3-1-1 at home against NYCFC all time, with a lone 3-0 loss last season.

Torrent adds former Girona FC midfielder

Looking to add depth to his midfield, Domenec Torrent made his first summer signing since becoming head coach last month, signing 33-year-old midfielder Eloi Amagat, formerly of Spain’s Girona FC.

Amagat played in 16 games for Girona in the 2016-17 campaign, helping them earn promotion into La Liga for the first time in club history. He played for Torrent at Girona back in the 2005-06 season, guiding them to the top of Tercera Division, Spain’s fourth division.

“Eloi has a lot of experience in Spain,” Torrent said in a news release. “He has a lot of quality and I think he can help us in the midfield.”