New York City FC have been busy preparing for their Round One Playoff meeting with Atlanta United on Sunday. Those efforts have been running parallel to a round of World Cup Qualifiers that saw five NYCFC players depart the group.
Here’s a round-up of how they got on.
Alexander Callens – Peru
The 29-year-old continued his run of starts for Peru against Bolivia but was unfortunately forced off at half-time with a muscle complaint.
That didn’t stop his teammates from recording a 3-0 victory, before following that up with an equally impressive 2-1 win against Venezuela on Tuesday.
Callens sat out the second game due to the knock he picked up against Bolivia, but he will no doubt be delighted with both results as they leave Peru in fifth place in their group.
Maxime Chanot – Luxembourg
A veteran presence at the back for Luxembourg, Chanot enjoyed a mixed time away with his country this month.
Despite already being eliminated from qualifying, Luxembourg were playing for pride and that saw them earn an impressive 3-1 win against Azerbaijan. Unfortunately, they were unable to follow that up with a second success in their next outing against the Republic of Ireland – losing 3-0.
Gudi Thórarinsson – Iceland
The versatile 29-year-old joined up with his country for games against Romania and North Macedonia knowing they would need favors from other teams to stand a chance of reaching Qatar next year.
Sadly, in the end it was not to be. Thórarinsson started on the bench for the game against Romania, but was called in after 15 minutes due to an injury for Ari Freyr Skúlason. The game eventually finished 0-0.
He then kept his place for the next game against North Macedonia, playing 86 minutes as the team suffered a 3-1 defeat. That result confirmed North Macedonia as taking second place in the group.
Sean Johnson & James Sands – USA
The shot-stopper has been a regular part of Gregg Berhalter’s squad of late, and kept his place on the roster for games against Mexico and Jamaica.
He was an unused substitute during an emphatic 2-0 win against rivals Mexico, and was then joined in the camp by his NYCFC teammate Sands.
The native of Rye, New York was selected by Berhalter as a replacement for Miles Robinson after the Atlanta defender collected a red card in the previous game.
Neither man took to the field for the meeting with Jamaica on Tuesday, during which the USMNT secured a 1-1 tie. That result kept the USMNT second in their qualification group and on course to compete in the World Cup next year.