Compounding mistakes lead to loss as NYCFC’s five-match winning streak ends vs Columbus Crew

Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

NYCFC returned to the Bronx on Friday night looking to win their sixth straight match for the first time in club history, but a quartet of mistakes vanquished that as the blue and white lost 3-2 to the Columbus Crew.

Columbus Crew end NYCFC’s win streak

MLS: Columbus Crew at New York City FC
Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Crew was the dominant side from the initial kick-off, but the heroics of goalkeeper Matthew Freese, who finished the match tying his season high in saves with nine, kept NYCFC in it until their first crucial mistake occurred.

In the 39th minute, Christian Ramírez got behind the backline, and Mitja Ilenic elbowed the 33-year-old in the back and earned himself an early trip to the showers as the referee pulled out a red card. 

NYCFC started pressing quickly after and was rewarded when Augustin Ojeda finished inside the box after being set up by a nifty backheel pass from Alonso Martínez. The blue and white would enter halftime leading 1-0, but the lack of their right-back on the pitch would be costly.

With the vacated space, the Crew were able to advance into the attacking third with ease and equalize in the 48th minute. Maximilian Arfsten made a run into the box before finding Cucho Hernández just to the left of the penalty spot. Hernández would stumble, but in the process, the ball found its way to Ramírez, who was left unmarked at the front of the net, and the 33-year-old made no mistake.

Six minutes later, the Crew capitalized on another NYCFC mistake. The black and yellow used the vacated space to find Arfsten on the left wing, who unleashed a shot that Freese couldn’t corral, and Mohamed Farsi tapped it in to make it 2-1.

The blue and white would get a pair of golden opportunities on the attack they couldn’t convert on before ultimately making the mistake that cost them points.

Farsi would draw a penalty after being shoved from behind by Hannes Wolf following the Austrian native getting boxed out by Farsi on a header attempt.

Hernández stepped to the spot and unleashed a picture-perfect strike into the top right corner to make it 3-1 Crew.

Despite a late surge that included an 86th-minute goal for Santiago Rodríguez courtesy of a perfect over-the-top pass from Maxi Moralez and 14 minutes of added time, NYCFC could not overcome their mistakes, and they walked away without a point.

“We knew it was going to be a fight,” Freese said postgame. “It was probably going to be an ugly one. Frustrated with the fact that it didn’t turn out.”

What’s next for New York City FC?

Despite the loss, NYCFC remains tied with their derby rival, the New York Red Bulls, for third place in the Eastern Conference with 32 points.

Next up for NYCFC, they will hit the road for a midweek fixture against LA Galaxy on Wednesday.

Kick-off is scheduled for 10:30 EST.

Mentioned in this article:

More about: