Tough Season MLS Season Open Loss For NYCFC

Photos: USA Today Sports

A fourth minute Maxime Chanot red card and a 56th minute Lucas Zeralayan goal undid New York City FC in their opening game of the 25th MLS season vs. Columbus Crew SC at the MAPFRE Stadium.

Sean Johnson made his 100th MLS appearance for NYCFC and put in an excellent performance in a battling, stubborn but ultimately fruitless afternoon for the Boys in Blue in Ohio.

Credit: USA Today Sports

Coming in hot off City’s Concacaf Champions League win over AD San Carlos, Ronny Deila made one change to the lineup for his first-ever MLS game in charge with Héber replacing Taty Castellanos as the central striker.

Confidence was high but NYC were dealt a crushing blow with just 4 minutes on the clock as Maxime Chanot was red carded for what was deemed a last-man challenge, reducing the road team to ten players with 85 minutes remaining.

NYCFC Head Coach Ronny Deila

On positive takeaways from today’s match ..
“The team spirit and the discipline was very good. Hard work as well. It was very tough, of course, if you have 10 men so early in the game. We stayed in the game to the end. In the end there we could have gotten something also. Of course, they had more chances than us, but you can’t expect [to have more]. That is not going to happen. So, I think that they were doing – they took out everything they had, and in the end, we were a little bit too short.”

On what the team needs to do before their next match against Toronto FC…
“We just have to rest now and get our minds right. We have to bounce back as quick as possible, and the first opportunity for that is Toronto. I know me and all the boys want to get something out of that game.”

NYCFC Goalkeeper Sean Johnson

On the fight of the team…
“Today our fight was incredible…Proud of the boys today. There was no lack of effort. Everybody gave it their all, but we came up a bit short.”

NYCFC Defender Alexander Callens

On the red card changing the game…
“At three minutes or so, it kind of changes everything…I don’t think we deserved to lose – maybe not win either – but I think a draw would have been good.”  

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