Crowned champion, New York City makes MLS history
The Gross Apple club beat Portland on penalties in the final.
New York City FC won the North American Football League (MLS) championship on Saturday for the first time in history, beating the Portland Timbers on penalties (1-1, 4-2) in the final. ‘a final with twists and turns. The New Yorkers, who opened the scoring in the 41st minute on a header from Valentin Castellanos, served by Argentina’s Maxi Moralez, seemed confident of their victory after having largely dominated a rather disjointed match overall.
But Felipe Mora managed to turn the situation in a miraculous way by scoring for the Timbers a few seconds before the final whistle. Despite the furious protests of the New Yorkers, who claimed offside, the goal was confirmed by the referee and forced an extension. It ended with the same score of 1-1 despite a fine shot from Paraguayan Portland Christian Paredes, stopped in extremis by a dive from New York goalkeeper Sean Johnson.
It was a crazy game.
The Big Apple team ended up winning 4-2 on penalties, with Johnson blocking two penalties and giving Peruvian defender Alex Callens the honor of scoring the winning goal. « It was a crazy matchNew York manager Ronny Deila commented, who kept his pre-match promise to undress in public in case of victory, keeping only his underwear. « We were in complete control of the game and I thought we would win in 90 minutes. And then they scored. We were broken« .
« But we’ve hit rock bottom so many times this year. This group of players are winners. It was just a roller coaster game», Added the Norwegian, former of Celtic Glasgow. The match was marked by an incident. New York Paraguayan Jesus Medina was hit in the head by a can of beer thrown from the stands, just after his side’s goal in the first half. It was the first time New York City FC had played in the MLS Final. Portland, for its part, was crowned in 2015.
The last ten MLS champions
2021: New York City
2020: Columbus Crew
2019: Seattle Sounders
2018: Atlanta United
2017: Toronto FC
2016: Seattle Sounders
2015: Portland Timbers
2014: Los Angeles Galaxy
2013: Sporting Kansas City
2012: Los Angeles Galaxy
The most successful teams
1. Los Angeles Galaxy 5 (2002, 2005, 2011, 2012, 2014)
2. DC United 4 (1996, 1997, 1999, 2004)
3. Seattle Sounders 2 (2016, 2019)
. Columbus Crew 2 (2008, 2020)
. Houston Dynamo 2 (2006, 2007)
. Sporting Kansas City 2 (2000, 2013)
. San Jose Earthquakes 2 (2001, 2003)