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Homegrowns vital to NYCFC remaining in playoff hunt

Andres Jasson, James Sands, Tayvon Gray, and Justin Haak have made important contributions to keep NYCFC close to the playoff places.

Andres Jasson has found his goal-scoring form at the exact right time |

New York City FC had an unusually busy summer transfer window, add a number of talented players to a struggling roster that lingered below the qualification line for the MLS Cup Playoffs for much of 2023.

The summer makeover has yielded results, as Mounsef Bakrar, Birk Risa, Andrés Perea, and Julián Fernández have all contributed significantly to NYCFC’s current six-match unbeaten run. 

Those newly-arrived players wouldn’t be in the position of helping NYCFC drag itself back to the MLS postseason if not for the contributions the team has received to date from its four longest-tenured Homegrown players. 

James Sands, Tayvon Gray, Andres Jasson, and Justin Haak are all part of the “first wave” of Homegrowns and have each, to varying degrees, made important contributions throughout the marathon 2023 season to keep NYCFC close enough to the playoff places to make this late-season push for the postseason possible.

NYCFC have fielded one of the youngest teams in MLS this season, leaning on young players from within and imported from abroad to fill roster holes opened up by the overhaul/rebuild the team has experienced since the 2022 season. The club needed to see progression, improvement, and impact from enough young players in order to sniff any form of success this season.

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