3 things we learned during NYCFC's heartbreaking loss in Music City

  • NYCFC lost 1-0 to Nashville SC
  • This was the third-straight loss
  • Here are three things we learned from the game
Santiago Rodríguez of NYCFC
Santiago Rodríguez of NYCFC / Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports

After getting embarrassed by the LA Galaxy during the week, New York City FC looked to rebound with a trip to Tennessee to take on Nashville SC, who entered the match in eighth place in the Eastern Conference, with NYCFC in fourth place. The Boys in Blue lost 1-0, losing their third game in a row.

Maxi Moralez finally returned to the Starting XI for the first time since his ACL injury after two assists in the last three matches. The early season struggles have been haunting NYCFC, with Mounsef Bakrar struggling to score and the side failing to get wins away from home. With one more match in June left the Pigeons would love to forget about this month after the losses.  

With things to discuss, here are three things we learned about Saturday’s loss to Nashville. 

3 things we learned about the 1-0 loss to Nashville SC

1. NYCFC continues to slip down the table 

Just last month, NYCFC was in sole possession of third place after being one of the best teams during May. However, after the flowers bloomed and they entered the long sunny days of June, it seemed like the team hit another bump on the road with a difficult run of matches.  

After a tough loss at home to the Columbus Crew that saw controversial calls, NYCFC has not been able to bounce back, going two matches straight without a goal. The live standings showed NYCFC back in sixth place, dropping three places since the international break.

2. Malachi Jones is a game changer 

NYCFC saw a fighting chance for the draw when Malachi Jones came on the pitch for Agustín Ojeda in the 60th minute. He had two huge chances to score as he made eight accurate passes, four won duels, and four crosses.  

Most of the counterattacks came from the left side of the field, with Jones making touches in the box while potentially setting up NYCFC for the draw. He continues to be one of Nick Cushing’s favorite depth options in just his first MLS season, which has kept Talles Magno almost nonexistent to the team.  

3. Are NYCFC fans rethinking Nick Cushing’s status on the team?

Since coaching his first full MLS season in 2023, Cushing has not been a favorite in the Bronx or Queens with consistently poor performances due to different tactical decisions. For the first two months of 2024, the “Cushing Out” campaign was as strong as ever after NYCFC was close to last place in the table. Since their upstanding run in both April and May, fans have begun to lighten up to him, with critical changes to the Starting XI positively benefiting the team.   

It seems like a roller coaster ride for the Pigeons, losing three in a row after winning five in a row. On the bright side, it is a long season. NYCFC will soon face off against a struggling Orlando City SC side without their star goalkeeper or midfielder, with a chance to get back to winning form this Friday.