New York City FC vs. Real Salt Lake: Jack Harrison's Goal

It’s been a good week for Jack Harrison.
On Wednesday he learned he’d get his first Major League Soccer start.
And 24 hours later, at Yankee Stadium, the New York City FC midfielder scored his first professional goal.








“It’s been a great week,” Harrison said. “Obviously it’s really nice to get your first goal and I was lucky with it, got a deflection. But I was still happy to get out there and fortunate to get the start really.”
Harrison said Vieira floated the idea of getting his first start early in the week, but didn’t tell him definitively until Wednesday.
“He said there was a possibility at the start of the week, but he didn’t want that to get to my head so I kept working hard all week and he told me the day before,” Harrison said.
Nerves were natural, but they subsided when Harrison joined his teammates on the field for warmups. And when the whistle blew, Harrison said he was more excited than nervous.
He had 58 touches, three interceptions and completed 69 percent of his passes. 








And then came the goal.

Receiving a pass from David Villa, Harrison attacked the open space and blew past two RSL players. He fired with his favored left foot from 20 yards out, his shot deflecting off defender Justen Glad and past flat-footed Nick Rimando to give NYCFC (4-5-6) a 1-0 lead in the 56th minute.


“It’s not quite as I imagined,” Harrison said. “I never really thought about it. I just wanted to go out there, play my game and have fun, like Patrick said.”








Vieira said the positive performance wasn’t a surprise from the first overall selection in the 2016 MLS SuperDraft.
“I would say Jack is a really talented football player. He really understands the game. He’s making the right decision, he’s really comfortable with the ball, he’s a player who can score and make the assist. I took him off because he started to get tired, it was his first game. I was really pleased with his game tonight.”
In the NYCFC locker room after the game, Harrison was one of the last to leave. He picked up his cell phone, but didn’t have the time to go through all the text messages.
“I haven’t even looked. I’ve just seen all the notifications,” Harrison said. “I just thought I’d deal with that later.”
As for Harrison’s plans after scoring his first goal in his first start?
“How am I going to celebrate my goal? There’s not much I can do. I’m only 19,” Harrison said. “My mom is in town so it will be nice to spend some time with her.”
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