Assists: Five of the Best...

Pirlo five assists

Some players derive just as much joy out of providing the goal's last pass as they do from scoring it themselves.

Here at NYCFC HQ, we believe those unselfish assist kings deserve just as much celebration as the men who get their names up in lights.

To that end, may we introduce five of the best assists we saw from our boys in blue over the course of the 2016 season.

In no particular order…

Harrison v FC Dallas

Sometimes it’s not a perfectly executed through ball which marks out a truly great assist – on occasion, a cross can split a defense just as effectively, such as this one from Jack Harrison…

The Englishman, who turned 20 on Sunday, produced a stunning center from the left to provide Khiry Shelton with this powerful header in the 2-2 draw with FC Dallas in September.

That @Harrison_Jack11 pass
That @khiryshelton14 finish

— New York City FC (@NYCFC) September 19, 2016

Pirlo v Columbus

It should come as little surprise that no-one at NYCFC completed more assists than Andrea Pirlo in 2016.

Il Maestro contributed 11 to the cause but there was perhaps no better pass made in the league last season than this from Andrea against Columbus in the thrilling 3-3 draw at the Mapfre Stadium.

@Pirlo_official ➡️ @Guaje7Villa - world class pass, world class finish

— New York City FC (@NYCFC) August 14, 2016

Allen v Portland

RJ might have something to say about the above assertion… this ball through to David Villa at Providence Park was out of this universe.

Picking up the ball inside his own half, RJ had the vision and selected the perfect pass through to El Guaje from the halfway line.

One to watch again and again and again…

What a pass from @RJallen21, what a finish from the captain

— New York City FC (@NYCFC) May 16, 2016

Harrison v Philadelphia

A scorching day at Yankee Stadium and it’s that man Harrison again with a sublime assist.

Jack burst clear of the Philadelphia defense and just when it appeared as though he was being caught up, he produced this sublime backheel for Villa to do the rest.

Strength, vision and skill.

Another Look: @Guaje7Villa gets the back heel pass from @Harrison_Jack11 and makes it 2-0 to

— New York City FC (@NYCFC) June 18, 2016

Pirlo v Orlando

Handing the floor back to one of the best assist-makers of his generation for our final entry… a goal which was shortlisted for MLS Goal of the Year.

You’ve gotta love a no-look, reverse pass and this was a perfect example of the genre from Pirlo as he picked out Villa with a lofted ball which cut out the defense and gave David the chance to lob the onrushing goalkeeper.

Soccer as an art form!

.@Guaje7Villa earns Star of the Match!

— New York City FC (@NYCFC) May 29, 2016

There’s five for starters… look out for a fan vote on our best assist from 2016 in the coming weeks.