Atlanta United lost 1-1 on Saturday to their old nemesis, Yankee Stadium. Who knows what a game at home for NYCFC would look like on a soccer field, but for the time being - and an unforeseen amount of time in the future - we won’t know. New York was pretty effective at containing the Atlanta attack and peppered Brad Guzan’s goal with shots all day long. An early exit for Miguel Almiron certainly made things more difficult for Atlanta, but even with him on the field, the Five Stripes looked like the Four Stripes with little room to find space on the field in New York.
Anyway... here’s how it looked on the box score:
So the Atlanta backline was a little... off. The three center back formation really didn’t do enough to keep New York from getting scoring chances and that was despite the Pigeons playing on the same size field as Atlanta. For the visitors, in addition to Brad Guzan, arguably the best player on the day was the post who stopped several chances from going in the net, including a 94th minute would-be game winner. It was not a great game for Atlanta, but it was a good result.
Meanwhile the Five Stripes went from not finishing their chances to finishing half of the chances put on target - which is great, except the number of shots on target was two, which is not great. NYCFC managed a whole pile of shots and a big mess of shots on target, but almost all of them hit Brad Guzan’s 8 foot wide wingspan or the post or crossbar or woodwork. It was a really superlative performance by the physical properties of the goals in the game for Atlanta United, had they been made of some other, less sturdy material or had the temperature been different in the afternoon, perhaps another NYCFC goal finds the net.
Luckily it didn’t.
Atlanta will play again on Wednesday since MLS is getting every minute of soccer in before the World Cup starts this week. That means the Five Stripes will have a little time to figure out how to play on a regulation field again ahead of their game against the Columbus Crew.