NYCFC Defeat Atlanta to Claim Consecutive Victories for First Time this Season (Highlights)
May 7, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York City FC forward David Villa (7) celebrates a goal against Atlanta United by New York City FC midfielder Maximiliano Moralez (not pictured) during the second half at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

David Villa, Rodney Wallace, and Maxi Morales all scored in NYCFC’s 3-1 victory in their first ever meeting with Atlanta. 

NYCFC earned back-to-back victories for the first time this season as they dominated MLS expansion side Atlanta United in a 3-1 victory. The victory sees NYC occupy third place in the Eastern Conference standings and total just three points fewer than conference leaders Toronto FC, over whom they have a match in hand.

NYCFC’s attack has struggled throughout the season, but appears to be improving after the New Yorkers scored three goals in two consecutive matches for the first time this season. Only once had they managed more than two goals in a match prior to their 3-2 win over Columbus.

NYCFC began the match on the attacking front and enjoyed the first opportunity of the match after a scramble to clear an early corner forced Atlanta keeper Alec Kann into a good low save.

NYC’s pressure continued and would pay off as star striker David Villa charged into the box and curled an effort off the far post to give his side the advantage and celebrate the extension of his contract.

Villa then nearly grabbed a second when his side won the ball back just outside Atlanta’s penalty area and Maxi Morales played the Spaniard to his left. However, Villa shot required little effort from Kann to save.

Another chance fell to Villa through a free kick on the edge of the visitor’s penalty area, but he blasted his shot high and wide of Kann’s net.

Carlos Carmona punished the hosts’ failure to convert shortly after with a first-time volley to level the score at the interval.

Despite domination of possession during the conclusion of the first half, NYC could send only a few tame efforts at Kann.

NYC’s start the second half was brights as they saw Rodney Wallace force a goal line clearance seconds before he forced Kann into a sharp save and another goal line clearance from his rebound.

Though the Boys in Blue had struggled to capitalize on their opportunities, they grabbed two in the space of a minute. First, Rodney Wallace redirected Ethan White’s excellent cross to score his third of the MLS season and then moments later sent a short pass in the path of Maxi Morales who slotted past Alex Kann into the bottom right corner with ease.

The remainder of the match was comfortable for the hosts. Atlanta pressed late on in search of a way back into the match, but failed to trouble the Bronx-based side’s defense or goalkeeper Sean Johnson.

“They made it really difficult for us in the first half,” said midfielder Jack Harrison after the match. “But I think once their press died down…in the second half we were able to play and come out and get those two goals that we needed.”

“It’s just getting the right pieces together and making it all work and I think it’s coming together now,” he added.

Meanwhile, Johnson stressed his side’s superiority in the midfield and linked it to the victory.

“I think the game was won in the middle of the park,” said Johnson. “The guys in the middle of the park were great today.”

He then went on to label the win as “huge,” coming off of an away victory.

Alexander Puri is eighteen years of age and currently resides in Manhattan, where he has lived for his entire life. He plans to pursue media studies when he attends Boston University as a freshman this September. Alexander is a passionate soccer fan and supports Juventus, Liverpool FC, and NYCFC. He watches these clubs play on a regular basis and has written multiple articles about all three teams. He normally spends his weekends watching the English Premier League before participating in pickup-soccer games in numerous fields throughout the city. Outside of sports, Alexander takes great interest to science fiction and fantasy franchises and often reads comics and watches films of such genres. For any inquires, you can reach him at