Valentin Castellanos took on the role of super-sub Thursday evening, scoring a second-half brace to lift New York City FC to a 3-2 win over a shorthanded Houston Dynamo side at Yankee Stadium.
The Argentine provided the game-winner in the 93rd minute, smashing home his own rebound after a header that prompted a reaction save from Dynamo goalie Tyler Deric. Castellanos’ other goal made it 2-2 in the 83rd minute, as he headed home a Keaton Parks cross from around the penalty-kick spot.
Shortly before Castellanos stole the show, it looked as though the Dynamo could have snatched all three points. Come the 77th minute, Mauro Manotas curled home from 22 yards out to make it 2-1, even as Houston lost large portions of the possession battle.
The Dynamo were selective in taking their chances, because Romell Quioto was shown a red card in the 29th minute for elbowing Ronald Matarrita in the head. They were reduced to 10 men just after Houston midfielder Juan David Cabezas made it 1-1 in the 26th minute, lashing home a cross from Tommy McNamara.
NYCFC actually found an early breakthrough in the 16th minute via Alexandru Mitrita, as the Designated Player capped off some tic-tac-toe play by finishing from close range. The home side also saw midfield maestro Maxi Moralez return as a second-half substitute.
The match was sent into a weather delay at halftime that lasted just under 80 minutes, prompting a prolonged break at the interval. Heavy storms had rolled through the Bronx, drenching the field in rain.
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