Bloodied Castellanos becomes focal point in wild NYCFC-Toronto draw
The story of New York City FC's 1-1 draw against Toronto FC Wednesday at Yankee Stadium was the calls made along the way. And the calls that were not made.
Referee Chris Penso whistled two penalties for TFC (one converted), while NYCFC's goal came off a free kick. But the flashpoint for the game was in second-half stoppage time, in a sequence that left NYCFC forward Valentin Castellanos bleeding profusely from his nose.
Castellanos and Toronto defender Chris Mavinga got tangled up in a pursuit in Toronto's box. Castellanos took a touch on a long ball over the top with his head, and was blocked from running onto it by another Toronto defender Omar Gonzalez. Mavinga was in position to take possession, and Castellanos pulled on his jersey from behind. Mavinga then hit Castellanos in the face with a wayward hand, and both players were sent sprawling, Castellanos bleeding.
While it looked like Castellanos could earn a penalty and a red card for the contact sustained, Penso in fact whistled the foul on Castellanos for the jersey tug, and the officiating crew explained in writing after the match to pool reporter Dylan Butler that Castellanos' injury was sustained when play was dead.