On Saturday, New York City FC were handed their first loss of the season and of the franchise on the hands of Sporting Kansas City.

The Bronx based club caught a taste of what it feels like while being shorthanded.


Head coach Jason Kreis had always talked positively about the depth of his roster and how experienced players like Villa and Lampard could only benefit the mentality of the team. However, both stars (yes Lampard made it to the Yankee Stadium taking advantage of the international break) were mere spectators, as NYCFC could not break the stubbornness of the team that was Sporting KC.

New York City FC had three players make their first-ever start and another trio make their respective debuts. The Club were without captain David Villa, midfielder Sebastian Velasquez and defender Josh Williams due to injury. Forwards Khiry Shelton and Adam Nemec were unavailable due to international call ups.

The sellout crowd of 27,545 at the club’s 70-yard field (narrowest in the MLS) saw a Matt Besler throw in taken full advantage by Ike Opara (marked by Kwame Watson-Siriboe) who rose above the crowd to head in the only goal of the game.


“It’ll never happen again: You can quote me on that…I got picked by either my teammate or somebody on their team. Possibly a designed play by them; but it doesn’t matter. I need to fight through the pick and make sure I get to the ball before he does,’’ said Watson-Siriboe.

The hosts made a late push in the second half, with a penalty initially called but ruled otherwise by the referee who had a change of heart. This burst of energy impressed coach Kreis who said, “I was really pleased, again, with the second half response, after going a goal down, the effort the guys put forth in the second half.” Adding his frustration of lack of resolve from the team earlier in the game, “But, again, I’m a little bit perplexed as to why we seem to be taking an entire half to figure it out because I don’t think in any of the games we have been really, really good in the first half and I think you have to be when you’re at home.”

Yet, NYCFC is still in a good shape, as they currently stand third in MLS’s Eastern Conference table 5 points.

For a team in the top league, a loss always brings with it a burning sensation but for a new franchise like NYCFC, recording its first loss earlier in the season, could turn out to be a blessing.

We will just have to wait and see as they return to the field on April 11th, at Philadelphia.

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