Galaxy midfielder Douglas Costa de Souza (10) and \New York City defender Alexander Callens (6) chase the ball during the first half at Dignity Health Sports Park. Mandatory Credit: Ray Acevedo-USA TODAY Sports

By Michael Lewis

FrontRowSoccer.com Editor

For one team, it was a Hollywood ending.

For the other, it was a bitter finish.

The LA Galaxy left its best for last as Javier (Chicharito) Hernandez struck in the 90th minute to hand New York City FC a 1-0 defeat in the season opener for both teams at Dignity Health Sports Park on Sunday.

It was a physical affair with both teams getting their kicks in and even sometimes a few shots on net, although the Mexican  international found it from the left side of the penalty area late in the match.

The result had to be a major disappointment for the reigning MLS Cup champions, who suffered their first defeat since mid-October as their 11-game unbeaten streak over two seasons was snapped.

NYCFC is expecting big things this season.

After besting Santos de Guapiles in its Concacaf Champions League Round of 16 series by a 6-0 aggregate score, the Cityzens entered the contest hoping to make it three wins in a row and two in Southern California within a handful of days. City had defeated the Costa Rican side in its “home” leg of the CCL on Wednesday, 4-0, at the nearby Banc of California Stadium in Los Angeles.

No such dice on Sunday, especially against a team that failed to reach the playoffs and bled goals last season.

“It’s first game of the season, so it’s not often teams play very well,” NYCFC head coach Ronny Deila said. “It’s a fight. Not so much good play. I think we controlled the game really well. We were we were working hard in a tough arena.

“We deserved something in the game. So it’s very disappointing we didn’t’ get points.

“We keep playing against the best teams like this, we will get points.”

Midfielder Alfredo Morales echoed his coaches’ sentiments.

“I’m very disappointed with the loss,” he said. “We played a good game. We should have got some sort of reward, maybe a draw.”

Captain and goalkeeper Sean Johnson turned out to be the star of the match for the visitors as he made several vital saves to keep the game scoreless.

Striker Taty Castellanos, last season’s MLS Golden Boot winner, experienced a rather invisible game, although he headed a close-range shot wide left a minute into first-half stoppage time.

Three minutes after kickoff, Talles Magno had a golden opportunity to give NYCFC an early lead but his shot was denied by goalkeeper Jonathan Bond. The visitors did not have many other serious chances after that.

Heber, late-match sub, just wide left in the third minute of stoppage time for City.