Gudmundur Thórarinsson celebrates his 90th-minute equalizer. (Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports)

By Michael Lewis

FrontRowSoccer.com Editor

Staring at death’s door as time was running out against Atlanta United Wednesday night, New York City FC was awarded a free kick some 24 yards out.

Gudmundur Thórarinsson told Maxi Moralez quickly what he had in mind.

“I just said like, ‘It’s my turn,’ and gave it my liking killer stare that I was going to take it,” the defender said.

Which he did – magnificently.

Thórarinsson powered a 24-yard drive with his left foot, launched from 24 yards out on the right flank, into the upper right corner beyond a stretched goalkeeper Brad Guzan to help NYCFC salvage a big, big road point at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

“Good, important goal,” Thórarinsson said. “This is what I’ve been practicing since I was five-years-old. So, it’s fun when it works out and especially in important moments like this in an important moment like this.”

Given the way NYCFC has performed in its last 10 matches (1-5-4), it needed even a point to keep its flagging MLS Cup Playoff hopes alive.

Thórarinsson, 29, has played soccer for quite a while and he admitted how difficult it is for a team to lose momentum and enter a funk that City has endured the past two months.

“It’s so strange,” he said. “Sometimes in football and I think in sports in general, when you lose momentum, it’s just like you don’t really know where to find the answers. Then you try to change something. Then that doesn’t work and then you change more. I felt today, we were struggling a little bit first half and then second half I felt like we were able to turn it around a little bit. I think for us it’s just back to basic because I think you guys know how well we can play when we’re at the top of our game, but it’s been absolutely an unbelievable run, period.

“It’s been so difficult. You start to look at everything within yourself, what you can do better. Honestly, it’s hard to describe it when you get into periods like this. Hopefully, I think this will bring us some positive energy into the next game.”

Thórarinsson felt NYCFC hasn’t played all that bad during its horrendous streak.

“I think everybody [is] trying to do their best to turn this around,” he said. “It’s so difficult. … I don’t feel like we’ve been really bad. It’s just like we’re losing 1-0. We’re not creating the chances that we did earlier in the season and then it’s just like small things that like. Everyone maybe goes down a little bit in in confidence and it just like affects the team when it when it’s 11 players against 11 players if every player is playing with a little bit less confidence.

“It hasn’t been anything like bad going on in the dressing room or anything like that against each other.”