Atlanta Defeat Highlights Consistency Concerns for NYCFC
May 28, 2017; Atlanta, GA, USA; New York City FC defender Ethan White (3) reaches for a loose ball as Atlanta United midfielder Yamil Asad (11) defends in the second half at Bobby Dodd Stadium at Historic Grant Field. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Despite some impressive results this season, NYCFC have been poor on multiple occasions against teams at the bottom end of the table. 

NYCFC failed to close the gap on Eastern Conference leaders Toronto FC as they fell 3-1 to MLS expansion side Atlanta United. The New Yorkers remain third in the table, but four points behind second-placed Chicago Fire and nine behind Toronto, though they have a game in hand over the latter.

The matter of inconsistency arises yet again after their most recent defeat. Despite impressive performances in difficult fixtures, New York City have managed to drop a number of points against sides on the bottom end of the two conferences.

In fairness, this was the Yankee Stadium side’s fourth consecutive away match in a row, while Atlanta had played their previous match at home. NYC must be able to accommodate to such conditions in the future, but it is fair to recognize this factor when poor results occur.

At the moment, the loss of points in what appeared to be easier fixtures on paper has not had too strong an impact on NYC’s current position. Their place in the playoff positions is secure as even if another Atlanta victory sends them down the table, they will still lie four points ahead of the Union.

However, the expectation among fans that NYCFC aim to finish first in the Eastern Conference is certainly a fair one. The Boys in Blue ended up just three points behind first-placed Red Bulls last season, and strong results this season certainly suggest that such success is within their grasp.

NYC had struggled in attack during the opening weeks of the season, but scored three times in a victory at the then Eastern Conference leaders Columbus Crew to inflict their first home defeat of the season. They didn’t even require Villa’s input.

Patrick Vieira’s men performed quite strongly the following weekend when they defeated Atlanta 3-1 at Yankee Stadium. Goal scoring opportunities fell to NYC FC on a frequent basis while at the other end of the pitch, NYC’s defense was untroubled despite Atlanta’s excellent attacking performances throughout the season.

Though they claimed only four points from a possible twelve over their four successive matches on the road, they earned two strong results. A point at Dallas is more than a decent result given Dallas’s current place in the Western Conference.

NYC’s victory at Orlando was a statement. The Florida club had surrendered points just once prior to NYC’s win and were unbeaten at home before NYC’s visit. However, after two defeats to Orlando, NYC dominated them as they ran out 3-0 winners and jumped ahead of their opponents.

Yet, poor results have also plagued this side and prevented them from claiming a higher position in the table. Defeats to DC, Salt Lake and most recently Atlanta have reflected an inconsistency throughout the season.

DC and Salt Lake both sit tenth in their standings, but have each claimed three points against the Boys in Blue. NYC also failed to defeat Montreal, who are now bottom of the Eastern Conference.

Meanwhile, NYC have earned ten points from a possible twelve from their most recent fixtures with Columbus, Orlando City, San Jose, and the Earthquakes, all of whom currently occupy playoff positions.

The ability to defeat top sides is necessary to success throughout a season. NYC’s impressive performance are certainly a positive and difficult to disregard. However, in order for them to truly maintain a positive influence on their season, the consistency of this side must improve.

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