Magnificent second half topples neighbors, 3:1
June 28, 2015

NY City New York
McNamara Wright-Phillips
06.28.15 · League

The first half of this game looked like circa 1990s MLS soccer: a small field inside a cavernous stadium, an awful playing surface, two teams that can't connect two passes together... You remember circa 1990s MLS soccer, NYCFC fans? No, of course, you don't.

The second half, on the other hand... well, there was one team that couldn't connect two passes together: NYCFC. Metro, on the other hand? They had their best 45 minutes of the season, turning a 1:0 deficit into a resounding 3:1 victory. And it could have been much, much worse.

Jesse Marsch's lineup rotation saw Chris Duvall return for Connor Lade, and Ronald Zubar step in for Damien Perrinelle. Sacha Kljestan came back from suspension, pushing Sean Davis to the bench.

The hosts dominating early, and scored just six minutes in. Off a corner kick, Metro failed to clear, and the ball got back to Thomas McNamara in the box. His shot placed the ball into the bottom right corner.

After such an awful beginning, it took Metro a while to find composure. By the end of the first half, they controlled most of the ball, with the majority of attacking coming through the wings via Kemar Lawrence and Duvall. That finishing touch was just not there... it would have to wait after the break.

And that wait was less than two minutes. Bradley Wright-Phillips did well go control the ball on the left flank, and circled it around to Kljestan. The midfielder returned the favor, sending it inside the box, where a perfect one-timer from the Englishman tied the game.

Five minutes later, off a Metro free kick, the ball ended with Mike Grella in the box. His floater was headed by Anatole Abang, and landed at the path of the onrushing Duvall. The right back roofed it in from close range for his first career goal.

Speaking of first career goals, in the 73rd it was Matt Miazga's turn. The youngster, who was terrific the entire match shadowing NYCFC's supposedly hallowed David Villa, got on the scoreboard after another free kick. Kljestan swung it in from the right side, with Miazga waiting on the goalmouth. The header was perfect. The celebration, swinging an invisible bat, was almost better.

Metro could have make it better as well, with Wright-Phillips and Manolo Sanchez both hitting the woodwork. That being said, it's hard to ask for more after such a magnificent second half.

Those who survived circa 1990s MLS soccer must agree...

Lineup: Robles, Lawrence, Zubar, Miazga, Duvall, McCarty, Martins, Kljestan, Grella, Wright-Phillips, Abang. Subs: Perrinelle, Zizzo, Sanchez.

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