The New York City Football Club snapped their three game losing streak last night with a much needed 2-0 win on the road over the Chicago Fire at SeatGeek Stadium. After a run where they gave up 3 goals in each of the last three matches (with the game losing goal coming at the 75th minute or later in all three matches) the team desperately needed to right the ship.
For the club it took only 16 minutes to knock in the game winner, as Gabriel Pereira picked up his 6th goal of the season on a right footed blast from outside the box for the quick 1-0 lead. From there the defense held up their end of the pitch, allowing no shots on goal and given goalkeeper Sean Johnson a much needed lighter night.
In the opening minutes of the second half came the insurance goal via MOTH Santi Rodriguez after a right footed shot found the left side of the net for the 2-0 lead and a small sigh of relief. The Fire nearly halved the lead in the 85th minute however as a header by Rafael Czichos got past Johnson but rang off the crossbar keeping the lead at 2.
In the post game press conference, Nick Cushing had only praise for his squad, “It was probably one of the best performances I have seen all season because with the ball he was a real threat and without the ball he (Santiago Rodriguez) worked tirelessly to cover those two midfield players and to win the ball. For me the biggest takeaway, a real team performance tonight.”
Next up for New York, the road trip continues as they head down to face 5th place Orlando SC on Sunday night.
1) Sean Johnson picked up his MLS leading 13th clean sheet of the season, putting him now three behind the mark of 16 by Tony Meola for the MLS record back in 2000 with Kansas City with 8 matches remaining. Andre Blake of Philadelphia has a shot of matching the mark as well, currently second in MLS with 11.
2) Score First and Win – NYCFC improves it’s record when scoring first to 12-2-1. On the flip side they’re 1-5-5 when they don’t.
3) This was NYCFC’s 5th road win of the season. That puts them one win above last year when they struggled on the road, going 4-8-5.
4) Orlando SC stands at 10-10-6 however they’ve struggled at home, going 5-7-0. Since July has been a struggle, going 1-3, getting shut out twice and scoring more than 1 goal once in that run. The team is defense first, being 6th in the East in goals given up, however is third worst to only DC & Chicago in goals scored with 30.
5) With 8 games remaining, Taty Castellanos despite not being with the team might end up leading NYCFC in goals this season. Heber, Talles Magno & with his goal last night Gabriel Pereira are currently second with 6 goals while Taty has 13.
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