Saturday's friendly between Manchester City and Chelsea at Yankee Stadium was an entertaining preview to more soccer in New York's future.
NYC FC, unveiled as the league's 20th team Tuesday, will begin play in 2015 as the second team in the market with the Red Bulls, who call Harrison, N.J. home.
While the expansion team has but employee -- former U.S. National Team captain Claudio Reyna is the director of football -- highlights from Tuesday's press conference were shown on the scoreboard before Manchester City players entered the field wearing NYC FC warm-up t-shirts over their jerseys before 39,462 spectators, mostly a pro-Chelsea crowd, on a chilly night.
The stadium would have to be at the top of the list as potential temporary sites as NYC FC looks for a permanent home in the five boroughs. Citi Field and Columbia University football stadium also have been mentioned as short-term measures. MLS has pushed for a permanent, $340-million, soccer-specific stadium at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in Queens, but it has received stiff opposition by residents and community groups.
"The ownership wants to make sure that they go somewhere where they feel wanted more than anything," Reyna said.
In less than a year, soccer has gone from famime to feast at the stadium. For the first time in 36 years last summer, the ballpark hosted soccer games when Chelsea and Paris St-Germain, and Real Madrid and A.C. Milan played friendlies. World Cup champion and two-time European champs Spain will play Ireland here on June 11.
Fans had the option of getting treated to two games for the price of one as they were allowed into the stadium prior to the game to watch Bayern Munich record a 2-1 victory over fellow German side Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League final in London.
In the main event, City continued where it left off when it scored the final four goals in its 4-3 win over Chelsea in St. Louis Thursday.
Manchester took advantage of Oscar's poor backpass that Gareth Barry converted into a third-minute goal. Samir Nasri chipped goalkeeper Henrique Hilario from 12 yards before Chelsea answered on Ramires' goal off a long ball 35 seconds into the second half.
A pair of second-half substitutes helped restore City's two-goal advantage as James Milner tallied off Edin Dzeko's feed in the 55th minute. Chelsea struck back in the 69th minute as Ramires converted Fernando Torres' right-wing feed for his second goal.
City extended its lead to 4-2 in the 74th minute as Nasri struck for his second, converting past keeper Petr Cech. Again the Blues closed the gap as Juan Mata fired a 25-yard free kick off the crossbar and into the net in the 82nd minute. Dzeko scored Manchester City's final goal.