Sean Johnson: “It just wasn’t good enough.We lost our discipline and got away from the way we wanted to play.” (Brad Mills/USA TODAY)
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The less said about New York City FC’s season opener the better.
City grabbed a one-goal lead on the road before surrendering two goals at the end of the first half and suffered a 2-1 loss to D.C. United at Audi Field Saturday night.
It was the third consecutive MLS season in which NYCFC dropped its opener.
“It was not even close to the performances we’ve had lately,” head coach Ronny Deila said. “It was a step back. … Overall a disappointing day. We can be better than this.”
— New York City FC (@NYCFC) April 18, 2021
NYCFC team captain and goalkeeper Sean Johnson also was blunt when he talked about the team’s disappointing performance.
“It just wasn’t good enough,” he said. “We should have to be honest with ourselves. Up until the first goal we did all right. But, just little things that we have to get right in games. We lost our discipline and got away from the way we wanted to play. So, through and through, it’s a game that we have to learn from if we’re going to move forward and achieve things because just simply wasn’t good enough today.”
When asked to assess his performance, Johnson replied, “I think it’s important not to focus on individuals in a game like this. I think it was more of a collective effort on the day. I didn’t think anybody play particularly well today. So we have to take a look at ourselves in the mirror and, and really get back to the things. It’s it’s winning, winning first balls, second balls, being aggressive, not losing duels, being switched on, set pieces. All those little things matter in games, big games.
“Starting the year, we can see now that if we don’t take care of those things will create a lot of situations for ourselves that will put us on the backfoot instead of keeping us on the front foot like we like we were to start this game.”
Taty Castellanos lifted the visitors into a 1-0 advantage in the 15th minute, sliding home an Anton Tinnerholm cross from the right flank.
But things unraveled during a five-minute span right before the halftime whistle.
First, Brendan Daniel Hines-Ike smacked a 25-yard blast from the right side past Johnson in the 39th minute.
Then, in the 44th minute, Russell Canouse put one in off a Julian Gressel feed for a 2-1 advantage that D.C. did not relinquish.