New York City Football Club earned a hard-fought point on the road against New England Revolution.
Talles Magno’s header ten minutes from time salvaged a valuable draw for Nick Cushing’s side against the Eastern Conference leaders at Gillette Stadium.
Here are Five Points from the game in Foxborough…
The City Boys showed excellent character to come away with a positive result, fighting back from a goal down with a late flurry of pressure.
On the back of a frustrating run of form on the road, and up against an in-form side looking for their fifth win from six, the Boys in Blue could have thrown in the towel – but instead, dusted themselves down and battled back, rallying to find a route back into the contest.
Within ten minutes of falling behind to Carles Gil’s opener after the hosts had already seen a goal ruled out for offside, Cushing’s side forced a late leveler as Talles Magno headed home a corner to rescue a solid point.
It was a strong showing of the team’s spirit and togetherness, and will hand NYCFC a confidence boost ahead of a welcome run of three successive home fixtures, as the squad look to build momentum.
All For One
Head Coach Cushing had spoken of the importance of a team effort over the past few weeks, highlighting the need for every single player to be ready and raring to do their bit when called upon.
Throughout the previous fixtures this season, those introduced from the City bench had produced a positive impact, though the Boys in Blue had not always managed to claw a result.
Once again, the substitutes had a notable influence on proceedings in Massachusetts, upping the visitors’ intensity and attacking threat in the final 15 minutes. Gabriel Pereira crafted the key assist (his seventh goal contribution in his last 12 appearances), delivering the cross for Talles Magno to level.
It takes the input of every single player, staff member and supporter to create a successful team, and having that strength in depth with the ability to change a game is also a key weapon to have in the armory.
Talles On Target
Two goals in three games for Talles Magno. The Brazilian bagged the crucial equalizer for his second of the season, showcasing his aerial ability with a well-timed and well-placed header.
The Brazilian had spoken of his desire to be considered as 'one of the best in MLS', while Cushing had identified the forward as a player determined to hit new heights this year.
Operating on the left of the front three, the 20-year-old looked lively throughout the clash at Gillette Stadium, earning deserved acclaim from his Head Coach. Should he now push on to build some goalscoring momentum, he may well go on to receive wider recognition for his efforts.
"I thought Talles Magno was exceptional," Cushing declared. "I thought it was a real individual performance from him in the sense of: how we dictate the game, and really dictate our attack.
"For me, there were so many pleasing parts [of the team's performance] rolling into a three-game home stretch."
It was a night to remember for Gabe Segal. Named in the starting XI for the first time, the 21-year-old lined up for his NYCFC and MLS debuts.
Thrown into the action in what was a challenging fixture, the youngster produced an impressive display, with Cushing hailing another ‘exceptional’ performance, praising the forward’s workrate and contribution to the City build-up.
Segal was also unfortunate to have seen a strike sail over the bar from a narrow angle in the first half - but speaking after the game, was delighted overall with his first start, full of smiles in the locker room.
An off-season recruit off waivers, Segal has had to be patient in his progress, but a welcome addition to the Club’s offensive options, he has made an encouraging start to his City career.
Leading By Example
The trip to Foxborough saw the captain’s armband handed to James Sands for the first time, as he became the first NYCFC Academy player to skipper the side.
The midfielder has been an ever-present on the field since returning from Rangers FC, with Cushing noting his newfound maturity.
The 22-year-old put his body on the line with a superb clearance in the first half to prevent what surely would have been the opener – further evidence of his willingness to give his all for the cause.
With Sands standing as one of several leaders within the group, alongside the likes of senior figures Maxime Chanot, Thiago Martins, Alfredo Morales and Keaton Parks, Cushing boasts a vast wealth of knowledge and experience throughout the squad, and positive role models for the younger players to learn from.
A healthy mix of youth and experience, gelling nicely with an ever-strengthening team spirit, the future is bright for the Boys in Blue, who will now look to pick up where we left off at home...
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