New York City Football Club finally have a match under their belt, after a 1-1 draw against Orlando City SC on Sunday.
NYCFC were outplayed to a certain extent, especially in the first half, but responded nicely in the second half, and even took the lead on 76 minutes, before Kaka equalized in stoppage time.
The buzz surrounding this club has largely been surrounding their superstar, their captain, and their first designated player, David Villa. The most storied striker in the Spanish national teams history, with countless awards at club level.
Yet it was Villa who disappointed the most in City’s opening fixture against Orlando.
Villa only recorded 30 touches of the ball throughout 90 minutes, the lowest among all NYCFC starters, and the lowest among all NYCFC players except Khiry Shelton, who came on as a substitute in the 61st minute. Villa was suffocated by Orlando’s defense and had virtually no time on the ball the entire afternoon. He was also dispossessed a team high four times, and had four touches with bad control, the second most on the team.
Simply put, Villa looked unsure of himself all night, and didnt quite make the impact that he would have hoped.
Villa’s brightest moment was in the 76th minute, when he assisted Mix Diskerud’s opening goal. Villa also created another chance, when he teed up rookie Khiry Shelton, who blazed a shot wide of Donovan Ricketts goal.
An assist and two chances created isn’t bad, per say, but it isn’t what you’d expect of your superstar. Villa mustered up a weak 6.25 match rating, according to whoscored.com, which was good for second worst among all starters, and worst among players who played all 90 minutes for NYCFC.
While Villa floundered in NYCFC’s opener, it was Mix Diskerud who thrived. The American international accumulated an 8.01 match rating from who scored.com, best between both teams, and good for man of the match honors. Diskerud had a team high 81 touches, and a stunning 96% pass accuracy. For a player who touched the ball that much, that’s an incredible stat.
Diskerud was calm and composed in the center of the park for NYCFC, and he dictated City’s attack. He started the counter attack that resulted in Shelton’s near miss, and he was the one who bagged the first ever goal for NYCFC. Diskerud arguably outplayed his opposite number, Kaka, and gives NYCFC a lethal option in the middle of the park.
David Villa obviously has time to improve, but after one match, it looks like Mix Diskerud is the player to watch for Jason Kreis’s side.