The final result wasn’t what he wanted, but New York City FC coach Patrick Vieira saw plenty of positives to take away from a 1-1 draw against the Montreal Impact Saturday afternoon at Yankee Stadium.
“I don’t have any doubts about the talent and quality of the players we have up front,” Vieira said in the post-match press conference. “But it will be important for us to take our chances because we are not going to create a lot of chances like that in a lot of games. Those chances we create we need to score a few of those.”
The only goal came from Rodney Wallace, who pounced on a rebound for a second straight week to score.
“He fully deserved it because of the way he’s working for the team,” Vieira said. “He’s a team player, gives everything when he’s on the field. I was really pleased with his goal because he’s working really hard when he’s on the field.”
Vieira said that Wallace has other qualities that have endeared him to his teammates and his coach.
“He loves the game, he’s working hard in training, in the game. He’s got a really good attitude in the dressing room, all the players love him,” Vieira said. “I like his character and he did really well in the league. He won the title so he knows how to do it. He’s got good experience as well. But what I really love about him is the way he’s competing when he’s on the field. He can score goals and he can do a lot of things.”
Vieira is also pleased with the improvements made week on week by Maxi Moralez, who nearly added his second goal of the year on a clinical counter attack midway through the second half.
“Maxi is getting better and better. He’s finding the space on the field, the relationship with Andrea [Pirlo] and Alex [Ring] is getting better as well,” Vieira said. “When the team plays that way, it’s part of Maxi as well because that is what we expect and what we want from him. I was really pleased with his game today.”
Vieira also praised the play of right back Ethan White, who limited the always dangerous Ignacio Piatti to one chance late in the first half.
“When you look at the game Ethan played today, I think he was quite really solid,” Vieira said. “Piatti didn’t create much. He had only one chance where we hit the post because we lost the ball in the midfield. I was pleased with the defensive side of Ethan. I’m quite lucky because I have two really good right backs.”
NYCFC has been better defensively this year, conceding just twice in three games, but Vieira said the credit isn’t reserved just for the back four and goalkeeper Sean Johnson.
“Always when we talk about the way we are defending I always talk about the team, it’s not just about the back four,” Vieira said. “We are conceding less chances because David, Rodney and Jack has been working really hard. When we work hard up front we make it a big easier for our back four.”