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NYCFC Road Scoring Struggles Continue, Lose 1-0 in Sean Johnson Reunion

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Apr 29, 2023; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; New York City FC forward Kevin O’Toole (22) battles for ball possession against Toronto FC forward Federico Bernardeschi (10) during the first half at BMO Field. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

It’s always an added challenge when a club faces a player that was vital to their years of success for the first time. The key knowledge they have about their former club often causes challenges for the team they used to play for. Tonight, the New York City Football Club faced off against their former Captain & Goalkeeper Sean Johnson and fell 1-0 on the road against Toronto.

NYCFC managed just one shot on goal for the match, coming at the 40 minute mark, but never afterwards and as a result, rarely challenging their former leader. On the other side of things, his replacement Luis Barraza was challenged repeatedly but still allowed a goal just after the start of the second half after Richy Laryea set up a one timer to Striker CJ Sapong to tapped a right footed shot in past Barraza for the 1-0 score and with the team’s struggle to get shots at Johnson, a disappointing 1-0 final. Later Defender James Sands talked about the early second half goal: “I think it is one of the worst times in the match where you can concede. We talk about the five minutes to start or end the game and then the five minutes before or after halftime. Those are kind of the swing moments and when you concede in one of those, it makes it very difficult for the rest of the game so I think we were maybe not ready and they [Toronto FC] obviously took advantage of that. It is something we have to fix for sure if we are going to be a top team in this league.”

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With the loss, NYCFC falls to 5th place in the East with 15 points in 10 games. Next up, the Boys from the Bronx will be taking on Charlotte FC for the second match on the road. Right now The Crown sits second to last in the East, with 9 points in 10 matches and like Toronto, facing NYCFC with just 1 win at home this season.


1) NYCFC’s struggle to put the ball into the net on the road continues. This season the team has been outscored 6-2 on the road vs outscoring their opponents 10-5 at home.

2) Luis Barraza continues to quietly shine. I had my doubts (and will have an apology story coming out next week about this), but in the past 6 matches while he has no clean sheets during that run (and just 1 on the season), he has given up only 1 goal in each of those 6 matches.

3) Facing Charlotte so far has been a challenge. In their two matches, the North Carolina team has won both, including most recently 1-0 at home back in September. Expect the crowd to be loud, as Charlotte FC has the second highest attendance at home this season, pulling in over 39,000 on average, up from the 35K last season.

4) The Gents in Blue’s schedule is about to get a bit more crowded for the first time this season as the US Open will get underway after Charlotte, forcing the club to play 3 matches in an 8 day stretch.

About the author – Scott Churchson has been an actor in every way for the past 13 years, from BG to stand in to stunts and principal, a sports writer for the past 4 and is one of the people that created Stream Punk Entertainment. He’s married to a veterinarian, has a cat with three working legs, a mother-in-law who just moved in and is just a simple man trying to make his way in the universe.

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