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NYCFC With Big 2-0 Win in Hudson River Derby, Closing In On Playoff Spot

Capping off a three week stretch with 7 matches, NYCFC closed out the run with a huge 2-0 win against local rival New York Red Bulls and can lock down a playoff spot for the seventh straight season. Fresh off the heels of the club’s 2-0 Campeones Cup win against Atlas FC on Wednesday and in front of a crowd of just over 30,000 Alexander Callens needed less than one minute to knock in a header past Carlos Coronel for a quick 1-0 lead. Following up barely 20 minutes later cam the club’s second goal of the night as Santiago Rodriguez knocked a left footed shot to the bottom right corner of the net and a much needed 2 goal advantage.

The Red Bulls nearly had cut the lead near the end of the half after an Elias Manoel rebound was ruled offside for VAR. After that RBNY never put much pressure on goalkeeper Sean Johnson, as the team from Harrison managed only 1 shot on goal. Afterword, head coach Nick Cushing “I think the last two games have shown that against the best two teams that like to be direct and make the game messy, that we can do both sides of the game. I thought the performance with the ball and without the ball was ten out of ten.”

At this point the club remains in 4th place in the East but closed the gap behind the Red Bulls to a single point. With two games remaining the club has a much needed 2 weeks off before facing Orlando on October 2nd for their last home match of the season.

5 Notes:

1) The two wins including the Campeones Cup on Wednesday wrapped out the 7 game/20 day stretch in positive fashion after a brutal run, with the Gents in Blue going 2-4-1 overall with just one of those wins coming in MLS however.

2) With the match’s clean sheet goalkeeper Sean Johnson sits at 14 shutouts. All time record for MLS is 16 held by Tony Meola.

3) Scoring first matters: 11 of the team’s 14 wins have come in matches where they went into halftime with the lead. So far this season the team only has 1 win when an opponent scores first.

4) Regarding their match on October 2, it will be at Red Bull Arena due to the Yankees schedule. In the start of the 7 game run NYCFC lost a late second heart breaker as Tesho Akindele broke a 1-1 tie with literal second remaining, giving Orlando SC a 2-1 win. Orlando remains 4 points behind the Gents in Blue with one match in hand.

5) In addition to the goal in the first minute Alexander Callens made a remarkable save in the 11th minute as RBNY got a shot past Sean Johnson only to be turned away by Callens who cleared the ball off the goal line with an outstretched leg. Callens also had the game winning in the Campeones Cup, scoring in the 4th minute.

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