When New York City FC announced the signing of Mounsef Bakrar, there was excitement in the air. The club finally brought in a striker after not having one for most of the season. There were some expectations they would bring in two, but supporters were happy their new signing joined the Pigeons.
Now, no one expected an immediate impact from Bakrar. The Algerian has only been with his teammates for about a week, and it was thought he would need time to adjust to his new club.
However, that was not the case. He made his NYCFC debut as a substitute in the Atlas F.C. match, and then picked up his first start against Toronto FC on Wednesday. This game skyrocketed him into the hearts of NYCFC fans, and he is quickly becoming a fan favorite.
To begin, he scored his first goal in his first start. It only took a few shots before he found the back of the net, and at the time, put the Pigeons up 2-0 against Toronto. Of course, that match would end, 5-0.
Mounsef Bakrar is becoming a NYCFC fan favorite
Bakrar’s goal for NYCFC was not the only thing that impressed the supporters; his overall work rate was also brilliant. He played as a striker should, making himself available up front and center. He made the runs past the Toronto defense, and opened up opportunities to take shots at goal.
At the same time, he was not afraid to wander, and he put himself in situations where he could act as the passer into the box. The striker also helped out in the defense, which was similar to what Valentín Castellanos would do. This illuminates that Bakrar works hard on the pitch. He does not sit and wait to receive the ball like some strikers will.
It is not just on the pitch, but off the pitch as well, that is causing the new signing to become a fan favorite. Supporters absolutely loved one of his first interviews where he even discussed the hotly debated pineapple on pizza.
Then, there was his short speech after the Toronto game. His facial expressions appeared to highlight gratitude and happiness with his first start. He also appears to be someone who would prefer not to speak. His speech is below:
Moreover, NYCFC immediately realized the impact Bakrar is having on the supporters, and the team as well. The new player identified he has a nickname, Baki, but the Pigeons are trying to make Bakman a thing. It helps that many were already calling him that beforehand, and some are trying to turn Bakman into a Batman association. This would make sense since Gotham City is supposed to be the idea of New York City at night, and the Pigeons mostly play at night.
Notably, Bakrar has only played in two matches. Still, he is taking the hearts of supporters by storm, both on and off the pitch. If he continues to impress, then New York City FC will have a new star and fan favorite.