May 21, 2022

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Della led NYC to a historic title after a wild ending drama

Della led NYC to a historic title after a wild ending drama

The New York light blues were seconds away from claiming the MLS title after regular time. But there are still additional roles and penalty shootout drama. For four minutes of extra time, Felipe Moura tied 1-1 after chaos in the penalty area.

In additional roles, the Portland Timbers had the initiative. The NYFC looked long characterized by a draw, but resisted and won their first MLS Final with a 4-2 penalty shootout. Goalkeeper Shawn Johnson did a lot of work saving twice, before Alexander Callins scored the decisive penalty.

Television pictures showed Ronnie Dela, who was shedding tears after his victory, a reality. It was also the first time the young club won the MLS Cup.

Keeper Hero: Shawn Johnson saved two penalties in the penalty shootout. Here with Alfredo Morales. Photo: Jaime Valdez

surprise title

Few believed Dela would win the title before the season, and it also seemed unlikely during the fall. New York City had to run almost at full capacity to secure a place in the playoffs.

Teams such as the New England Revolution and Philadelphia Union were expected to put up stiff opposition, but Della’s men surprised and ran out of the way in the final.

The poor goalkeeper played a zero-breaking header in a rainy encounter in Portland. After 41 minutes, Valentin Castellanos sent a free kick into the penalty area.

It was a well deserved leadership. New York City had a clear advantage in the first place. Mora’s goal in extra time seemed to affect Dellah’s men, but the lightning blues managed to push him ashore in the end.

On the pitch at Timbers Stadium, the NYFC could cheer for the club's first victory in the MLS Cup.  Photo: John David Mercer

On the pitch at Timbers Stadium, the NYFC could cheer for the club’s first victory in the MLS Cup. Photo: John David Mercer

Della has been the head coach of New York City since January 2020. He then left a similar role at Vålerenga. Telemarkingen previously won two league titles as Celtic coach, and in 2013 led Strømsgodset to the top of Eliteserien. After the final on Saturday, the 46-year-old won titles in three different countries.

The New York team is part of the same ownership group as Manchester City in the Premier League.

(© NTB/TV 2)

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