NEW YORK – In the life of Mix Diskerud, this was a pretty good week.
The midfielder helped the US national team to a pair of historic wins over the Netherlands and Germany, scoring the equalizer in Cologne on Wednesday.
Just three days later, Diskerud made his triumphant return to New York City FC, scoring what proved to the game-winner in a comprehensive 3-1 win over the Montreal Impact on Saturday night at Yankee Stadium.
“It’s been a very, very fun week,” Diskerud said. “It’s fun to represent the country and win against two of the best teams in the world right now and joining the little winning streak we’ve got going on right here as well.”
That winning streak is at two – the expansion club’s very first – and the unbeaten streak is three as NYCFC were able to build off a first road win last Saturday in Philadelphia to put forth their best performance to date against the Impact.
With the exception of the first 20 minutes of the second half when head coach Jason Kreis said his team was “really quite poor,” NYCFC defended resolutely, kept the ball, created turnovers with high pressure and had a number of quality scoring chances.
“We saw a group tonight that felt a little more liberated and a little bit more free to be the type of players and type of team they’re capable of,” Kreis said.
For just the second time this year, NYCFC got on the scoreboard first when David Villa scored his team-leading fourth goal. Perhaps as important, before Montreal could level, Diskerud got the second goal in the 76th minute after Kwadwo Poku’s pressure forced a turnover.
“This obviously is a moral boost for the team,” Villa said. “In terms of confidence, it’s going to be great for the team. We just have to continue.”
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It wasn’t perfect, and there was a letdown when Wandrille Lefevre pulled Montreal within a goal with two minutes left in full time. But there was an immediate response as Poku scored his first career MLS goal off a pass from Villa.
“I really thought there’s been moments when we’ve done things good, but tonight I thought was the best we’ve really executed what we’re trying to do here,” defender Chris Wingert said. “That part felt good.”
And it felt especially gratifying for Diskerud to send the energetic crowd home with a victory.
“That they come, as many as they do, game after game, even though we were losing, it felt so good to be able to give back,” Diskerud said. “They can take the subway or taxi home being happy with a smile on their face.”