Thiago Andrade could not save NYCFC. (Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports)

Unlike New York City FC’s most recent game, there were no late-match heroics, by Thiago Andrade.

Or any of his teammates for that matter.

In what essentially was a flat and disappointing performance, City went down to a 2-1 defeat to CF Montreal at an empty Exploria Stadium Wednesday night.

It appeared Andrade had set up a potential penalty kick five minutes into stoppage time, but City eventually was ruled to be offside after some help from VAR. Andrade, who came on as a 72nd-minute sub, had scored the winning goal on a marvelous run in the final seconds of a 2-1 comeback win at D.C. United.

NYCFC head coach Ronny Deila admitted he made a mistake when Andrade was inserted into the match as his team went from three to four defenders.

“I think I did a mistake to do that,” he said. “I can take my own blame.”

But NYCFC had some other problems as well.

“We have to take our chances more, especially when they are unbalanced,” Deila said, adding he didn’t “feel that we got outplayed in any way.”

NYCFC was missing several key players. Center back Alex Callens was still with Peru at Copa America.

The Concacaf Gold Cup hasn’t begun yet, but NYCFC paid the price for missing two key defensive players. With goalkeeper Sean Johnson and James Sands with the U.S. national team for the tournament, their respective replacements, Barraza and Sebastien Ibeagha didn’t exactly distinguish themselves at Exploria Stadium.

They more or less extinguished any hopes of NYCFC of securing a win.

“I think the loss falls back on everybody. There was moments of not so much quality on each end of the field, and each player has got to look himself in the mirror and and realize that it’s a team effort,” Bazzara said. “You can’t single a guy out. When these when these things happen, we were much better team. And as much as it hurts you know we got to put this behind us and and keep going, keep building.”

Ibeagha was called for a penalty kick that set up Montreal’s equalizer and Barraza could not stop Rommel Quioto’s game-winner in the 73rd minute.

It was only the second time in 13 meetings with Montreal that City fell to defeat. The team has a 7-2-4 record against the Canadian side.

The game did not exactly start well for Barraza as Quioto put the ball into the back of the net past Barraza for Montreal 46 seconds after the opening kickoff, only for the goal to be nullified due to an offside call.

NYCFC drew first blood in the 29th minute when Keaton Parks slotted home a shot from the left side of the penalty area off a right-wing feed from Ismael Tajouri-Shradi past goalkeeper James Pantemis.

Montreal knotted things up at 1-1 as a penalty kick was awarded after Sebastien Ibeagha was ruled to have tripped Mason Toye in the box in the 40th minute. Three minutes later, Toye took a stutter step on the ensuing penalty kick and powered a shot into the lower left corner while Bazzara dove in the opposite direction.

The host team – Montreal can’t play in Canada due to COVID-19 restrictions – took advantage of defensive errors by NYCFC to secure the winner in the 73rd minute. Quioto latched onto a long ball from Djordje Mihailovic between two defenders and rounded Bazzara to slip the ball home for a 2-1 lead.