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2023 Player Preview: Tayvon Gray

The Bronx-born Homegrown has earned a spot in the Starting XI

Loving the natural look.
Photograph by Katie Cahalin, courtesy

Tayvon Gray

Position: Right Back
Age: 20
2022 Season: 31 appearances, 22 starts, 2,298 minutes, 3 assists, 13 interceptions
Key Stat: 82.4% passing accuracy

What went right in 2022:

Tayvon Gray found himself making 18 starts during the 2022 MLS regular season with New York City FC, an increase from the 10 starts Tayvon made in 2021 after the right-back was asked to step up and fill the role of injured defender Anton Tinnerholm. Gray not only filled the shoes left empty by Tinnerholm’s absence but he laced them up and was a critical component in the team that eventually lifted the MLS Cup in Portland in 2021.

Tayvon nearly netted his first MLS goal against Orlando City SC on October 2, 2022, in Red Bull Arena. The ball crossed over the line, but a second look by the official ruled that Santiago Rodríguez had slightly redirected the ball which resulted in the goal being called back for offsides. It’s okay. Tayvon will score, and his first goal should rightfully take place at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, where he was born.

What to improve:

When you look at Tayvon’s stats last year, it shows an overall improvement. This can be attributed to playing more minutes, and feeling increasingly comfortable on the pitch. Tayvon needs to continue to grow that confidence. He may have started in the shadows of more experienced defenders like Anton Tinnerholm and Alexander Callens, however his hard work is paying off and the results are showing in his improved performance. Tayvon is well on his way to developing into a great defender, and making the Bronx proud.

What to expect in 2023:

Tayvon signed a new contract with NYCFC through 2025 with an option for 2026, so you can expect him to be on the field. With the departure Anton Tinnerholm, Tayvon should expect to start at right back, with the 18-year-old right-back Mitja Ilenič adding much-needed depth for the long season. With Callens now playing for Girona FC, and the NYCFC Senior Team adding several players from the NYCFC II squad, the 20-year-old Tayvon will find himself to be one of the team’s more seasoned defenders. Watch to see how he models for the newcomers and how he shines.

2023 NYCFC Player Previews

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• Malte Amundsen
• Luis Barraza
• Maxime Chanot
• Maximo Carrizo
• Matt Freese
• Justin Haak
• Kevin O’Toole
• Samuel “Kwaku” Owusu
• Keaton Parks
• Matías Pellegrini
• Gabriel Pereira
• Talles Magno
• Thiago
• Thiago Martins