Keaton Park: “We have a lot to fix, we have a lot of work on.” (Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)
ORLANDO, Fla. – In their sixth game of the year, New York City FC finally put one up in the win column Monday morning.
It won’t be considered one of the teams greatest victories in its short six-year history, but City needed that.
Still, midfielder Keaton Parks realized the team still has a long, long way to go to reach anywhere near its potential under new head coach Ronny Deila.
“We’re still missing a lot,” he said after Monday morning’s 1-0 victory over Inter Miami FC. “We’ve had struggles with finishing throughout these games. We had scored only two goals in three games. We’re a team known for our finishing and scoring goals, especially coming off last year. So. we are struggling a little bit there, but we are struggling all around. We’re still getting goals scored on us as well. We have a lot to fix, we have a lot of work on. Obviously, we’re happy with the win today, but we have to work on our defense, work on our attacking, work on our finishing. We have to put it all together.”
Then there is there is the transition from one coaching philosophy to another. Deila likes to have a more disciplined lineup and attack in contract to Domenec Torrent, for whom he took over during the winner.
“We’re still getting used to Ronny’s playing style,” Keaton said. “We had a long preseason and I think we came out decent in the first two games, especially in the [Concacaf] Champions League, but four months off is hard. It’s a lot of time away from each other. Trying to adapt to a new style is not easy with a big break like that. So, we’re just still getting used to it, learning as a team how Ronny wants us to play.
“He’s still learning about us as players, what our strengths and weaknesses are. It’s all coming together. We’ve had some good performances throughout the season, especially today. O thought we performed really well. I think we’re definitely getting the system down.”
In contrast to its first two matches, Parks felt NYCFC played with more intensity from the opening kickoff.
“I think we just came out stronger today right from the start,” he said. “I think we had some slow starts in the last two games. The other teams came out intense, and coming out slow and making little mistakes, you can’t afford to do that in this league, and we got punished for it. Today, we came out strong from the first whistle. We were attacking and we were getting chances and creating, and we didn’t let them have anything. That was the difference between our last two games and today.”
When what the team needed to improve on, Keaton elaborated on what he said before.
“We have to work on everything,” he said. “Obviously, we’re not perfect. Our finishing isn’t perfect. We’re getting goals scored against us. All around we obviously have spot to improve and O think that comes with time, learning with Ronny ‘s new system and growing as a team and growing that chemistry. We have a lot of work all around. It’s just not one thing we have to fix to become a top team