New York City Football Club recorded an impressive 2-0 road win on Sunday. The Boys in Blue took the lead through a sensational strike by Gabriel Pereira in the sixteenth minute. The second half saw NYCFC double their lead after their high press put Santiago Rodríguez in on goal to slot home.
Interim Head Coach Nick Cushing made three changes to the starting XI that took on Charlotte FC midweek – Alfredo Morales, Maxi Moralez, and Héber dropping out for Nicolás Acevedo, Justin Haak, and Gabriel Pereira.
The game started at a somewhat slower pace but was sparked into life in the 16th minute when Gabriel Pereira unleashed a ferocious drive from 25 yards to give NYCFC the early advantage.
Pereira collected the ball from an NYCFC corner and drove inside from the left before firing off an effort that arrowed into Slonina’s top corner, leaving him helpless to stop it.
NYC were growing in confidence, and their ability to transition quickly was proving dangerous. On the half-hour mark, a delightful turn and pass by Talles Magno put Thiago Andrade in behind, but his effort was well blocked by Gabriel Slonina.
At the other end, Xherdan Shaqiri was attempting to inhabit dangerous pockets of space and test the NYCFC backline. Some fantastic last-ditch defending from Thiago Martins in the 43rd minute denied Federico Navarro what would have been a clean shot-on goal from six yards out.
As the half neared a close Pereira was again testing Slonina from distance. He wriggled free on the right this time before producing a low strike that forced Chicago’s goalkeeper into a good save down low.
The second half brought no changes for NYCFC but an early goal thanks to some marvelous pressing by Pereira. He nicked the ball away from Chicago’s center-back and that allowed Santiago Rodríguez to grab the ball and calmly slot it away.
Cushing’s side continued to mount pressure on their hosts and in the 61st minute, Thiago Martins’ header hit the post. At the other end, the hosts were posing a threat with well-timed balls in behind the NYCFC defensive line. In the 69th minute, Sean Johnson made a well-timed move to the edge of his box to bat away one such opportunity.
Nick Cushing introduced his first substitute of the game in the 77th minute as Thiago Andrade was replaced by Tayvon Gray. He was joined on the field by Héber in the 82nd minute when he replaced Talles Magno.
In the 85th minute, a Chicago corner found Rafael Czichos a few yards out, but he couldn’t keep his header under the bar. As the end of regulation time neared, Cushing introduced Andres Jasson for Pereira in the 89th minute. That would be the last notable act of proceedings and confirm an impressive 2-0 win for NYCFC on the road against Chicago.
Next up for New York City Football Club is a meeting with Orlando City SC on August, 28. Kickoff at Exploria Stadium is set for 7:30PM ET (FS1/NYCFC.com/Radio).