New York City FC grab win in home opener over LA Galaxy
David Villa celebrating his goal on Sunday. | Photo: New York City FC

On Sunday, New York City FC hosted the LA Galaxy at Yankee Stadium. Both clubs grabbed wins in the first week of play and were hoping to carry the form over to Sunday. David Villa had scored in every home opener dating all the way back to NYCFC's inaugural season and was hoping to have similar success in his 100th appearance for the club.

First Half

The LA Galaxy came out strong in the first 5 to 10 minutes but were quickly made aware of NYCFC's strong midfield as well as their relentless attack. Two of NYCFC's new players worked well on the right side which led to a chance in the 22nd minute. Anton Tinnerholm and Jesus Medina combined before the latter played a great ball into David Villa's feet.

The angle was too tight for the 2016 MLS MVP and after assessing his options he decided to square the ball. The ball was half-cleared and Anton Tinnerholm rocketed in his first career MLS goal off of the crossbar.

Anton Tinnerholm celebrating his goal. | Photo: New York City FC
Anton Tinnerholm celebrating his goal. | Photo: New York City FC

David Villa continued his home opener success as he doubled his side's lead in the 33rd minute. Ben Sweat helped win the ball up to Jesus Medina who started a counter-attack for the home side. Medina skipped past Ashley Cole before playing a well-weighted ball into the feet of Ben Sweat who couldn't put it home. Fortunately for NYCFC, David Villa was in the right place to put home the rebound and give his side a 2-0 advantage which they saw through halftime.

Galaxy Grab One Back

After a largely dominated first half by the home side, the Galaxy did well to bounce back and create some opportunities in the second forty-five. After last year's game at the StubHub Center and Sean Johnson's incredible reactionary first-half save on Ola Kamara  on Sunday, the Gals were probably beginning to lose hope in putting one past the NYCFC shot-stopper. However, after some good wing play by Ema Boateng, his cross was met at the near post by Jonathan dos Santos who slotted it into the goal and brought the Gals to within one goal in the 60th minute.

Jonathan dos Santos beats Sean Johnson to the ball. | Photo: LA Galaxy.
Jonathan dos Santos beats Sean Johnson to the ball. | Photo: LA Galaxy.

Opportunities went both ways following that with NYCFC having chances to regain their two-goal lead and the visitors having the chance to tie the game, but in the end, the game ended 2-1 to the home side who have taken a maximum six points in their two games this MLS season. Ashley Cole's 85th-minute yellow card (his second of the match earning him a sending off) for a tactical foul on David Villa did not help the Gals chances of equalizing.

What's Next?

Next week, New York City FC will look to make it three wins from three in the 2018 MLS season when they host Orlando City SC at Yankee Stadium. Following that, NYCFC will do some traveling as they have back-to-back away games against the New England Revolution and San Jose Earthquakes to wrap up the month of March.

The Gals have just two matches remaining in March with the second of the two being quite historical as they'll host LAFC in the first-ever meeting between the two Los Angeles clubs. LAFC has impressed in the first two weeks grabbing the maximum 6 points including a 5-1 over Real Salt Lake. Prior to their meeting with LAFC, the Galaxy will travel north to face the Vancouver Whitecaps.