Toronto II Goals:
NYCFC II Goals: Matthew Myers 29', 47'
New York City II claimed a second win of the 2023 MLS NEXT Pro campaign, earning a 2-0 road triumph at Toronto FC II. A Matthew Myers double secured all three points at York Lions Stadium to claim back-to-back victories, as Matt Pilkington’s side produced a dominant display against the Young Reds, who were reduced to ten late on with Rohan Goulbourne dismissed on 73 minutes.
Speaking before the game, Pilkington has spoken of the ‘great experience’ the clash would offer his side, as a tough challenge, and the Head Coach named a strong, if much-changed XI from last weekend’s Home Opener against Atlanta United 2.
On the back of clinching a first victory of the season at Belson Stadium, the Boys in Blue headed into the contest full of confidence, and were thoroughly deserving of the points, laying siege to the Toronto goal with 22 shots to the hosts’ three – 11 of those on target.
Johnny Denis went close to opening the scoring on 23 minutes with a trademark free-kick, which was parried away, with Myers' rebound then cleared off the line.
The visitors would not have to wait long though to break the deadlock, as 2023 SuperDraft pick Myers pounced on a loose ball in the box – the chance kept alive by Denis. After the home side failed to clear, Myers reacted quickest to steer the ball low into the far corner for his first NYCFC II goal.
While the opener arrived through a scrappy passage of play, Myers’ second of the game by contrast was a thing of beauty.
City came flying out of the blocks after the break, extending the advantage two minutes into the second period with a superb counter-attack.
Francesco Di Ponzio won the ball back well midway through his own half before lofting an inch-perfect cross-field ball into Ronald Arévalo’s path. Making his first NYCFC II start, the forward drove goalward before teeing up Myers to smash home an unstoppable effort.
Toronto goalkeeper Luka Gavran was kept busy as the City Boys continued to threaten, thwarting Arévalo, Denis and Klevis Haxhari well, while Alex Rando had to be alert at the other end to preserve his clean sheet. Jordan Faria also went close to reducing the deficit with an effort that whistled past the post.
The home side were reduced to ten on 73 minutes when Goulbourne was shown red for a wild lunge, and though Myers was denied his hat-trick with another fine Gavran save, two goals would be enough for NYCFC II to cruise to victory.
“I thought the performance was quite strong overall. We were quite consistent throughout. We started both halves really well and I think that made the difference to dominate on the ball early to find our rhythm. Overall, I am really pleased with the performance all around.”
How We Lined Up
New York City Football Club II travel to the Sunshine State to face off against fellow Eastern Conference outfit Orlando City B on Sunday, April 23rd at 7:00pm ET in Kissimmee, Florida.
Watch live at MLSNEXTPro.com and follow our official @NYCFCII Twitter page for updates.
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