Santos de Guápiles Goals:
New York City Football Club Goals: Castellanos 5', 30'
New York City Football Club kicked off their Concacaf Champions League campaign against Santos de Guápiles on Tuesday night in San Jose, Costa Rica. A fifth-minute penalty from Taty Castellanos opened his account for 2022. The forward would add a second goal on the half-hour mark after pouncing on a loose ball in the penalty area. NYCFC were reduced to 10 men in the 69th minute when Santiago Rodríguez was shown a straight red card.
New York City Football Club kicked off their 2022 campaign with a Concacaf Champions League first-leg tie against Santos de Guápiles on Tuesday night.
Head Coach Ronny Deila named a strong starting XI in San Jose as the Boys in Blue sought to secure an advantage ahead of the second leg next week.
NYCFC exerted control over possession in the early minutes and that earned them a fifth-minute penalty after a Gedion Zelalem cross was handled in the box.
That allowed Taty Castellanos to step up and power the spot kick down low to the goalkeeper’s right and hand City an early advantage.
In response, Santos instigated a persistent high press when out of possession that tested NYCFC’s composure on the ball.
In the 22nd minute, the visitors were able to break through that press via a direct attack that ended with Santiago Rodríguez cutting the ball back to Maxi Moralez – his effort twice hitting the crossbar before bouncing away.
At the other end, Santos were still attempting to engineer turnovers high up the field to create chances, but they were unable to test Sean Johnson.
On the half-hour mark, Castellanos and NYCFC had their second. It came after a Malte Amundsen cross pinballed around the penalty area before falling to Castellanos.
The 2021 Golden Boot winner then fired a shot high into the net from eight yards out to extend NYCFC’s advantage.
Santos remained a threat heading into half-time with some poor passes in the defensive third affording the hosts several half-chances.
NYCFC finished the half the stronger of the two sides, however, and almost added a third when a low cross from Moralez was turned onto the near post by a Santos defender.
The second period began with a similar intensity from Deila’s side and that produced several early looks at goal.
In the 53rd minute, Castellanos almost completed his hat-trick when he was fed in on goal by Moralez, but his effort was well saved by Ruiz.
NYCFC continued to push for a third and their next major chance saw Rodríguez combine with Castellanos on the edge of the box only for his effort to narrowly fly past the post.
That would be the Uruguayan’s last act of the night after he was harshly dismissed for a tackle in the 69th minute.
In the 75th minute, Deila sought to switch NYCFC to a back three system by introducing two new faces in Keaton Parks and debutant Thiago Martins for Talles Magno and Zelalem.
The Boys in Blue were still able to maintain control of the game and ultimately reduced Santos to efforts from distance. In the 89th minute, Deila made a further change by subbing out Castellanos for Héber, before substituting Justin Haak for Nicolás Acevedo in the 93rd minute.
That would prove to be the final notable act of the game and confirmed a 2-0 victory for the Club in their first leg meeting with Santos de Guápiles.
Player of The Match
How We Lined Up
Next up for New York City Football Club is the return leg of their Concacaf Champions League tie against Santos de Guápiles on Wednesday, February 23, 2022 at Banc of California Stadium.