New York City Football Club is a professional soccer club competing in Major League Soccer (MLS), the highest level of American soccer. The club based in New York City is as a member of the league’s Eastern Conference.
New York City played its first game in 2015, as the twentieth overall expansion team of the league. It is the first franchise to be based in the city, and the second in the New York metropolitan area, after the New York Red Bulls, with whom they contest the Hudson River Derby. Since 2015, the club has played at Yankee Stadium in The Bronx.
Jason Kreis was appointed as the club’s first coach, remaining for a single year prior to being replaced by Patrick Vieira. Vieira guided New York City to their first MLS Cup playoff appearance the following season, as well as a runner-up berth in the Supporters’ Shield in 2017. Vieira’s teams also set MLS records for the largest improvement in wins for a consecutive season.
Based on attendance from the 2019 regular season, New York City’s attendance was ninth-largest in the league. In 2019, Forbes estimated the franchise was the seventh most valuable in MLS, worth over $385 million.
In 2012, Ferran Soriano, Barcelona’s vice president at the time of the Miami bid, was appointed Manchester City CEO, prompting Garber to reach out to him about a New York City team. In December 2012, unnamed sources told the media that Manchester City were close to being announced as the new owners of the 20th team of MLS, and the brand name “New York City Football Club” was trademarked.
Although the club quickly denied the report, MLS commissioner Don Garber, however, announced in March 2013 that he was almost ready to unveil the new expansion team.
Manchester City, in association with the New York Yankees baseball team, paid the $100 million expansion fee to join the league. New York City Football Club, LLC was also registered with the New York State Department on May 7, 2013, and on May 21, the team was officially announced as the 20th Major League soccer franchise.
On June 2, 2014, the club announced that Spanish World Cup-winning striker David Villa had signed as the first-ever player. While the team awaited its MLS start in 2015, Villa was loaned to Melbourne City, a club also owned by City Football Group. He was, however, called back after only four matches.
On July 24, 2014, New York City announced at a live press conference in Brooklyn that ex-England international and Chelsea all-time top goal scorer Frank Lampard would be joining them as their second Designated Player. Former coach Reyna hailed Lampard as “one of the greatest players in world history”, while Lampard stated, “it is a privilege to be able to help make history here in New York City”. On July 6, 2015, the club signed ex-Italian international Andrea Pirlo from Juventus as their third Designated Player.
New York City faced the New York Cosmos in the fourth round of the 2015 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup and were eliminated on penalties after playing overtime. The team finished 8th in the Eastern Conference, 17th overall. After the season ended, head coach Jason Kreis was relieved from his head coaching duties on November 2.
The team’s failure to make the playoffs and the team’s second-lowest points in the league were the main factors in his release. A week later, Patrick Vieira was announced as the new head coach of the team.
Under Vieira’s stewardship, the club had a remarkable season in 2016. The club began pre-season trading for Jack Harrison, the first overall pick in the 2016 MLS SuperDraft. Harrison made an immediate impact and became a core component of the club in his first year with the team, forming a formidable partnership with Villa.
Villa also regained his striking form, eventually becoming the recipient of the league’s MVP Award after scoring 23 goals. New York City qualified for the playoffs for the first time in franchise history, eventually losing to Toronto in a two-game series in the Eastern Conference semi-finals.
Following the season’s conclusion, the club parted ways with Lampard, who had become injury-prone during his time with the club. 2017 saw a similar season, with the club replacing Lampard with the arrival of Argentine midfielder Maximiliano Moralez as their new, third Designated Player.
The club, however, became runners-up for the 2017 Supporters’ Shield, finishing the regular season with a record of 16–9–9, as well as a record points total of 57. The club again, however, were once again eliminated from the playoffs in the conference semi-finals, losing to the fifth-seeded Columbus Crew by a 4–3 goal aggregate
On January 28, 2020, New York City signed Icelandic midfielder Guðmundur Þórarinsson from Swedish club Norrköping, and the club announced the appointment of Ronny Deila as the new head coach; Deila signed a three-year contract.
New York City began the 2020 season with its debut in the CONCACAF Champions League and advanced to the quarter-finals after defeating Costa Rican outfit San Carlos 6–3 over two legs. The club then began the 2020 MLS season with a defeat, losing 1–0 away against Columbus. New York City subsequently announced the signing of Uruguayan midfielder Nicolás Acevedo from Liverpool Montevideo on March 2, 2020.
Maximiliano “Maxi” Moralez is the highest-paid player in New York City FC. The Argentine attacking midfielder earns a base salary of $2,000,000 and a compensation of $2,000,000.
New York City FC player salaries for 2019, as released by the MLS Players Union, as of June 1, 2019.
|Heber Araujo dos Santos||F||$785,000.00||$788,750.00|
|Juan Pablo Torres||M||$70,250.00||$84,750.00|