The post-Patrick Vieira era begins for New York City FC on Sunday when defending MLS Cup champion Toronto FC visits Yankee Stadium.
After coaching NYC to a 1-1 tie against Atlanta United on June 9, Vieira left to take over the coaching duties at French club OGC Nice. He was 40-28-23 in 91 games for New York City.
Domenec Torrent was named his replacement. However, the Spaniard did not join the club until Saturday he had been awaiting his work visa.
He spent the last 11 years as an assistant to Pep Guardiola at Barcelona, Bayern Munich and most recently NYC’s parent club, Manchester City.
NYC goalkeeper Sean Johnson feels Torrent will have no problem getting acquainted with his new team.
“I’m pretty sure has watched just about all if not all the games this season,” he said.
NYC (8-3-4, 28 points) is second in the Eastern Conference, five points behind Atlanta United with a game in hand.
Toronto (4-7-3, 15 points) is 10th, four points behind Orlando City for the sixth and final playoff post.
“It doesn’t matter who we play right now, we have to win games if we want to get ourselves into the position that we’re going to,” Toronto defender Eriq Zavaleta said.
Toronto will have an opportunity to reassert itself into the conference conversation with Sunday’s match and the next one vs. the fourth-place New York Red Bulls on July 1.
“In no way do we think that those teams are out of reach, that we’re not good enough to play with them. That’s ridiculous from our perspective,” goalkeeper Alex Bobo said. “We know our capabilities, our style, our guys, so trying to take points away from them is top of our list right now.”
—Field Level Media