Ronald Matarrita’s impact Saturday afternoon at CenturyLink Field rippled through New York City FC’s massive 2-0 win over the Seattle Sounders.
Not only was he part of a back four that helped Josh Saunders register his third clean sheet, the Costa Rican international also scored his first career Major League Soccer goal three minutes from full time.
“It was a team action,” Matarrita said. “The most important thing is that the team looks good. It doesn’t matter who scores, just that we win and that we finish our chances. We created many options, and we finished two that were very important.”
The victory was NYCFC’s MLS-leading fourth away from home. The club has 13 out of a possible 21 points on the road.
“I am really satisfied because we worked hard to win the game. There is no easy game in the MLS,” NYCFC coach Patrick Vieira said. “I think from David [Villa] up front to Josh [Saunders], players worked hard, worked well because we respect the game plan and they expressed themselves when they had the ball. That was a really good team performance today.”
The play started with Mikey Lopez pressuring high after losing the ball and forcing a bad pass back to Seattle goalkeeper Stefan Frei that David Villa picked off. Frei dove toward Villa and desperately poked the ball free, but Lopez recovered and slipped to Matarrita, whose right-footed shot glanced in off the crossbar from 14 yards out.
“On a personal note, this goal fills me with happiness,” Matarrita said. “It’s what I worked for. I was waiting to score my first goal. Today I got it and I’m very grateful to God, to the fans, to the coaching staff and my teammates. They all give me the confidence to go out every game in the best way.”