NYCFC weren’t able to carry their winning form into the Gold Cup break, falling 3-2 in Vancouver and seeing their winning streak halted at four matches.
While Head Coach Patrick Vieira acknowledged that his squad could have been more clinical in converting their opportunities to score, he was quick to praise the effort shown by his players.
“It’s disappointing when you’re winning 2-1 at halftime,” lamented Vieira, “and lose 3-2, creating the number of chances we created away from home.
“But when I look at the performance of my players, the way they worked, it’s difficult for me to ask them to do more than what they did today.”
Left shorthanded by international call-ups and injuries, Vieira was forced to make changes to his team as they traveled to Vancouver for this midweek match up.
One of the beneficiaries of this was Andrea Pirlo, who got the start tonight and performed admirably, spraying passes all over the field and very nearly getting a goal of his own.
“I think Andrea had a really good game today,” said Vieira.
“You look at the first half, the way he worked with Alex and Yangel, the way we build up, the vision he had in our game, switching the game from one side to the other side, it was a wonderful performance from Andrea.”
Vieira also spoke highly Vancouver’s team performance, noting that he knew better than to take them lightly following their 4-0 loss at Chicago over the weekend.
Vieira told reporters: “We were prepared. We knew that they would be giving everything that they had to show that last week was just a one-off, and I think when you look at the first half, we prepared for the game well.
“When you lose important players, especially Yangel when he came off, it had an impact on our game as well. But overall, I’m pleased with the performance of the team. I think the players worked hard, created chances.
“Like I said, you have to give [Vancouver] a lot of credit, because it’s not easy to get back, fighting the way they did, scoring good goals. We lost against a team who took their chances.”