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James Sands earns his first MLS start

High praise for the NYCFC homegrown talent following the game

MLS: MLS All-Star-Homegrown Game Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

James Sands, New York City FC’s first ever homegrown player received his first ever MLS start last night in their 0-1 loss to the New England Revolution.

Sands signed with NYCFC in 2017 shortly before his 17th birthday and received his first minutes with the club later that year in a substitute appearance. More recently Sands had been with Lousiville City FC on a short term loan. NYCFC brass must have seen something they liked as this was just their second game since Sands returned to the team on September 1.

Apparently manager Dome Torrent was pleased with what he saw in Sands’ inaugural performance as well as he had good things to say in the post game press conference. His statement gave some hint at Sands’ place with the team moving forward, including an indication that he’ll likely get his second start with the team in their game against D.C. United on Saturday (a game that will be available on Univision and Twitter).

First team minutes at an MLS club looking to make Supporters Shield push just two months removed from his 18th birthday is a big step for the youngster. Clearly his development will need to continue but this is an encouraging next step for a player who has been a regular for the Youth National Teams including scoring a goal in the U-19’s Slovakia Cup win over Ukraine in May.