First Touch

NYCFC Lose To Portland In Yankee Stadium Opener

New York City FC suffered a 2-1 defeat as they played out their home opener against the Portland Timbers on Saturday. City took a 10th minute lead through Santiago Rodríguez, before Antony equalized in the 85th minute. Evander then produced a curling effort in the 97th minute to give the Timbers the win. 

Jovan Mijatovic of NYCFC reacts to losing
Jovan Mijatovic reacts to the loss. Photo by Mark Smith - USA TODAY Sports

NYCFC 1 Portland Timbers 2

Report by

New York City FC were back in the Bronx for the first time in 2024 as they took on the Portland Timbers in the Club’s home opener.   

City were eager to pick up their first win of the campaign, with Nick Cushing making one change to the XI that started last time out against St. Louis City – Andres Jasson replacing the suspended James Sands.  

First Half

The hosts flew out of the blocks and almost broke the deadlock inside three minutes after Hannes Wolf and Mounsef Bakrar connected in the box, but unfortunately Bakrar’s poked effort was well smothered by Maxime Crépeau.  

A series of half chances then followed for City before they made the most of their early dominance with a goal in the 10th minute. 

Arriving after some pinball in the penalty area, Santiago Rodríguez was the man with the definitive touch as he fired a low shot across Crépeau from the right hand side of the penalty area for his first goal of the season.  

One almost became two minutes later after a well-timed run by Bakrar put him through on a goal. Unable to fully shake away the attentions of his defender, his shot from a tight angle was only just deflected behind for a corner.  

City continued to control the game through the first half hour with several promising half chances falling to Bakrar. Elsewhere, Wolf was proving a constant threat in large part due to his dynamic runs and dribbling down the left.  
A misplaced pass by Crépeau in the 27th minute almost saw Wolf record his first goal for the Club, but the Canadian’s blushes were spared thanks to a last-ditch block by teammate Zac McGraw. 

Wolf again came close nine minutes later after good work by Rodríguez down the right. His pass found the Austrian in space at the top of the box, and despite making a strong connection on the ball, he couldn’t keep his shot on target.  

As the half neared its conclusion the Timbers were handed the chance to take a shot at goal from a freekick, but the effort was blocked by the wall.  

Andres Peres of nycfc in action against portland timbers
Andres Peres during the second half. Photo by Mark Smith - USA TODAY Sports

Second Half

The second period brought no changes for either team as a light drizzle continued to blanket Yankee Stadium.  

With the hour mark approaching Portland began growing into the game and in the 58th minute Antony found himself free inside the area, but his curled attempt went high and wide of Matt Freese’s goal. 

Bakrar thought he had doubled City’s advantage in the 65th minute after rounding Crépeau and firing into the roof of the net, only for the offside flag to deny him. 

Cushing would introduce his first substitutes of the game minutes later as Justin Haak and Julián Fernández checked in for Wolf and Jasson.  

That was followed in the 79th minute by the decision to bring on Tayvon Gray and Jovan Mijatović in place of Bakrar and Mitja Ilenič. 

The Timbers would find an equalizer through Antony in the 85th minute. 

The visitors then took the lead deep into injury time after Evander curled an effort past Freese. That would prove to be the final notable act of the contest as City suffered a narrow defeat. 

nycfc logo

Next Game

New York City Football Club are back at home to face fellow Eastern Conference side Toronto FC on Saturday, March 16 at 7:30pm ET at Yankee Stadium in The Bronx, New York. Broadcast: Apple TV | Radio:  

Scroll to Top