New York City Football Club Interim Head Coach Nick Cushing has hailed a strong ‘team performance’ after his side’s 2-0 win against Chicago Fire.
The Boys in Blue traveled to SeatGeek Stadium on Sunday evening in search of a victory after three consecutive defeats. Gabriel Pereira opened the scoring in fine style 16 minutes in with a piledriver from distance, before teammate Santiago Rodríguez doubled the scoring less than sixty seconds into the second half. Speaking afterward, Cushing hailed his team’s collective effort as well as their ability with and without the ball.
“I think we showed that we can be a threat whether it be with the ball or on the counter attack with Gabriel Pereira and Talles Magno,” Cushing said. “We bring Héber on, and with Thiago Andrade and you look to the bench we have Andres Jasson who comes in and gives the team energy. Like I've said, for me it was a masterclass from Santiago Rodríguez tonight it was probably one of the best performances I've seen all season because with the ball, he was a real threat and without the ball, he worked tirelessly to cover those two midfield players and to win the ball. For me, the biggest takeaway, a real team performance tonight.”
Cushing also took time to commend the work of central midfield pairing Nicolás Acevedo and Justin Haak. The pair stepped in on Sunday to produce a fantastic performance matching tough tackling with smart passing to link the team’s defence and attack.
“We've got two guys in the middle of the park tonight in Nico Acevedo and Justin Haak that don't have so many games in them as a pair,” Cushing said. “Their performance tonight, the way that they controlled the middle of the pitch against a world class player in Xherdan Shaqiri, and they broke the play up, protected the central defenders, kept us playing and controlling the game with the ball, I thought was a huge takeaway moving forward."