On July 25, New York City FC lost the best player in its franchise history. The club loaned out Valentin "Taty" Castellanos to La Liga's Girona FC for the rest of the 2022 season. Since his departure, things haven't looked up to par for the defending MLS Cup Champions.
Since Taty's exit, NYCFC is 1-1-3, picking up just four points in five matches. To understand how poor those results really are, one must know that the club only lost 4 matches in its first 21 games. Clearly, the results are a step down from what the defending MLS Cup champions are used to.
In the club's first match without Taty, NYC went the full 90 minutes without recording a shot on target. That's just the fifth time this season that the club has failed to put a ball in the net. Overall, its a shocking result for the Eastern Conference leader in goals (48).
Going forward, NYCFC is going to need more from its attack to keep up its hopes of repeating as champions. Luckily, NYC still has one of the best attacks in the MLS with young, talented and hungry wingers.
Talles Magno (20), Thiago (21), and Gabriel Pereira (21) have all scored at least five goals thus far. In addition, experienced forward Héber has scored six goals.
It's going to be a group effort when it comes to replacing the top goalscorer in the league over the last two seasons, and no team does better than NYC. The club is the only team in the MLS that has three players with at least six assists to their name (Rodriguez, Magno, Moralez). As a team, the club has the T-5th most assists in the MLS (29).