NYCFC Leave Banged Up Following a 2-1 Win Over Atlanta United

New York City FC leave banged up but Gabriel Pereira helps the Pigeons secure third-place in the MLS Cup Playoffs

ANALYSIS – To mark the club’s fourth consecutive win in a row to finish out this season, NYCFC managed a 2-1 win over Atlanta United but left Mercedez-Benz Stadium with several critical injuries that could impact the Pigeons with playoffs now just around the corner.

 

NYCFC Leave Banged Up After a 2-1 Win Over Atlanta United

Grabbing an early lead with a ninth-minute goal from Gabriel Pereira and capping it off with a 60th-minute goal from the substitute Héber would help NYCFC to see out a fairly competitive 2-1 win despite a late goal from Atlanta’s Andrew Gutman. While it wasn’t up to the same standard NYCFC have produced in their last few matches, battling to earn a win on the road can always prove a valuable test before a first-round playoff matchup.

However, NYCFC will now potentially be dealing with some major injuries heading into that first round as one of the club’s leading scorers in Talles Magno was pulled off with what appeared to be a bad shoulder or arm injury just before halftime. And furthermore, starting right-back Tayvon Gray was stretchered off in the 18-minute while Alfredo Morales went down just seconds after being subbed on in the 65-minute.

Major Injuries Could Effect NYCFC’s Repeat Chances

While the club is yet to announce the duration of these injuries or if each player will miss any time at all, it would still be fair to say that each injury looked fairly serious in its own respect and I would think all three are set to at least miss the first round of playoffs. 

It’ll be difficult for NYCFC without three key players including one of the team’s top goalscorers but Cushing will make adjustments, it’s just a shame they played Atlanta on turf the last weekend of the season because any injuries obviously hurt the club’s repeat chances.

On a more positive note, midfielder Keaton Parks made the starting XI and played a strong 65 minutes completing 95 percent of his passes while adding four chances created and Anton Tinnerholm continues to earn minutes off the bench replacing Gray yesterday and contributing to a solid defensive performance. 

Who Will Step up for The Pigeons?

With the loss of Taty Castellanos back in July, NYCFC has had several different players step up including Alexander Callens, Talles Magno, Gabriel Pereira, Maxi Moralez, and more but if these injuries are serious who will step up for these pigeons? Tied for the club’s leading goalscorer, Héber is the obvious answer but some interesting names have taken on bigger roles over these past few wins.

Thiago Martins has really begun to settle in with NYCFC and has been far better of late compared to his initial start in MLS and Anton Tinnerholm – the former MLS Defender of the Year nominee – will be leaned upon in the wake of a potential Gray injury. Along with them, second-round MLS SuperDraft pick Kevin O’Toole has been thrust into the fire in place of a struggling Thiago Andrade and has found success while midfielder Nicolás Acevedo has cemented himself into Cushing’s XI over the last four wins.

Last Word: NYCFC will face Miami in the first round of the MLS Cup Playoffs

Injuries or not, third-seeded NYCFC will need to find a way to keep the momentum going as they are scheduled to play sixth-seeded Inter Miami next Monday (Oct. 17) at Red Bull Arena, however, reports currently indicate a switch to Citi Field might be on the way.

Despite a split series between the two during the regular season, NYCFC certainly has the pieces to pick up a win against Miami at home if they’re healthy but that will be the big issue for Cushing to sort out. Either way, we should be in for an interesting first-round matchup between New York City and Miami that should be very tightly contested by both sides.

NYCFC is on a good streak though heading into the MLS Cup Playoffs. They had won four games in a row, with three of them happening during MLS play. New York City FC clinched an MLS Cup Playoffs spot against Orlando City SC earlier this month.

Photo Credit: New York City FC’s Twitter Account on October 9, 2022.