New York City FC – Match Report vs Atlanta United 11/08/19


  • A1 – Very good, could play higher
  • A2 – Strong potential to play higher
  • B1 – Good, strong player at level
  • B2 – Potential to be strong player at level
  • C – Average for the level, rewatch
  • D – Below average, don’t follow up

Valentin Castellanos

Player profile:

  • Nationality: Argentinian
  • Age: 21
  • Date of birth: 03/10/1998
  • Current Club: NYCFC
  • Career: Torque, NYCFC
  • Position: Striker
  • Secondary position: Left Wing / Right Wing
  • Preferred foot: Right

Valentin Castellanos made himself a nuisance for the Atlanta United defence even though he failed to have a productive day in front of goal. The Argentinian striker worked very hard for his team, challenging for everything he could get to and this perseverance did threaten to cause the opposition some problems if he had been more clinical with his chances. He is a fairly aggressive player who likes to battle with the central defenders and he used this aggression cleverly to draw fouls when in possession (sometimes going over slightly too easily) and to win the ball high up the pitch when pressing.

The 5’10” forward showed a good turn of pace and made some great runs in behind, whilst also being able to leap high to challenge in aerial duels at both ends of the pitch. He made some clever flick ons and seemed confident with the ball at his feet, and managed to assist his team’s goal – the main thing lacking for Castellanos was a goal, which he had two or three opportunities to get. At times he struggled with the physicality of the Atlanta back line and failed to hold up the ball but for the most part he battled well.

Overall, an intriguing performance that showed promise and a player to definitely watch again.

Rating: B1

Ebenezer Ofori

Player profile:

  • Nationality: Ghanaian
  • Age: 24
  • Date of birth: 01/07/1995
  • Current Club: AIK
  • Career: New Edubiase United, AIK, VFB Stuttgart, NYCFC (L), AIK
  • Position: Defensive Midfield
  • Secondary position: Central Midfield
  • Preferred foot: Left

Ofori had a mixed game in defensive midfield for NYCFC, showing some good defensive attributes but struggling in possession. The 5’8″ Ghanaian has a sturdy build that allows him to compete in tackles and 50/50 duels to good effect. He made some good tackles and interceptions in midfield, winning possession in some important areas and tidied up a few loose balls. He pressed the opposition well at times but also became slightly overeager, committing a couple of rash fouls. On occasion he was turned too easily as well and struggled to recover.

His positioning in front of the back line was decent but also sometimes left space for the Atlanta players to drop into. In possession, Ofori greatly struggled, making some poor passes and dribbling down blind alleys only to then lose the ball. The midfielder was not particularly progressive and struggled to have much time on the ball during this game.

On the whole, the Ghanaian showed some defensive promise at times but apart from that failed to have the desired impact.

Rating: B2

Alexandru Mitrita

Player profile:

  • Nationality: Romanian
  • Age: 25
  • Date of birth: 08/02/1995
  • Current Club: NYCFC
  • Career: CS Turnu Severin, Viitorul Constanta, Steau Bucuresti (L), Pescara, Universitatea Craiova, NYCFC
  • Position: Left Wing
  • Secondary position: 10 / Right Wing
  • Preferred foot: Right

Mitrita had quite a quiet game on the left wing in this match, showing some good skill but having little to show for his work. The winger used his body well to get in front of the ball when being closed down and used some good close control to beat opposition players. His passing was impressive at times, finding some nice through balls, whilst also delivering some dangerous crosses from set pieces.

He lacked composure in front of goal for his best chance, rushing it and therefore skewing it wide. He did also make some stray passes and the Romanian’s first touch let him down on occasion in dangerous areas. At 5’6 he does not pose an aerial or physical threat but showed a decent burst of pace.

The 25 year old had little motivation to track back and had an average game, despite showing glimpses of quality.

Rating: B2

James Sands

Player profile:

  • Nationality: American
  • Age: 19
  • Date of birth: 06/07/2000
  • Current Club: NYCFC
  • Career: NYCFC, Louisville City (L)
  • Position: Defensive Midfield
  • Secondary position: Central Defence / Central Midfield
  • Preferred foot: Right

Playing as a central defender in a back 5 on the day, Sands had a very poor game as he struggled to cope with the Atlanta front line, specifically Josef Martinez. The youngster was unable to keep up with the movement, skill and pace of the opposition strike force, committing some reckless challenges that lead to him getting a yellow card and giving away a penalty. Sands’ awareness was below the required standard as he frequently allowed the opposition striker to run off his shoulder, or was caught the wrong side of his man.

At 5’11” he is fairly average in height and used some good strength at times to win duels. His concentration seems to be an issue with failures in marking and missing an important clearance from a corner that nearly lead to a goal. In possession the American seemed competent but unspectacular, with one or two good drives out of defence.

Overall, it was a poor performance from Sands who was withdrawn with 25 minutes left to play.

Rating: D


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