New York City FC dug deep to earn a 2-2 draw with Los Angeles Football Club on Sunday evening at Banc of California Stadium, taking a road point from a breathless, end-to-end encounter in these young clubs' first-ever meeting.
David Villa opened the scoring, diving to head home the rebound after LAFC goalkeeper Tyler Miller saved his penalty kick, awarded to NYCFC for a handball in the home side's penalty box spotted by video review.
LAFC soon responded with a quirky goal off a corner kick, as Walker Zimmerman's header was redirected into his own net by Sebastien Ibeagha. The expansion club grabbed the lead after the break when Carlos Vela pounced on a loose ball in the NYCFC box and fired home.
The Cityzens rallied, however, and drew level via substitute Ismael Tajouri-Shradi, who slammed a tightly-angled finish in off the crossbar after a deflected cross forced Miller to scramble backwards and claw the ball away from the top corner.
- 13' – NYC – David Villa | WATCH
- 23' – LAFC – Sebastien Ibeagha (OG) | WATCH
- 66' – LAFC – Carlos Vela | WATCH
- 75' – NYC – Ismael Tajouri-Shradi | WATCH
- THE BIG PICTURE: This was both a track meet and a chess match between two of MLS' most cerebral coaches, and Bob Bradley and Patrick Vieira will have plenty to dissect from an occasion that showcased their teams' strengths and vulnerabilities alike.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Tajouri-Shradi's supersub cameo snatched victory out of LAFC's hands and rewarded Vieira's faith, helping turn the page on NYCFC's NY Derby humiliation last week.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Several legit contenders on both sides of this one; we'll nominate Maxi Moralez, who was relentlessly energetic and influential in both directions at the heart of the visitors' midfield.