New York City 3 Minnesota United 1: Villa scores solo stunner as hosts rally

David Villa was on target with a stunning solo goal as New York City came from behind to beat Minnesota United 3-1 in MLS.

New York fell behind to a ninth-minute opener from Christian Ramirez but the hosts hit back thanks to Alexander Callens, Jack Harrison and Villa at Yankee Stadium on Thursday.

Villa put the result beyond doubt just past the hour-mark, receiving the ball on the touchline, nutmegging his opponent before driving into the penalty area and curling his effort into the net as New York claimed a fourth consecutive league win to improve their grip on third position in the Eastern Conference - two points adrift of leaders Toronto FC.

With one victory in five league matches, Minnesota are ninth in the Western Conference and four points outside the play-off places.

Without a win in eight away matches since joining MLS this season, the odds were against Minnesota but they made a bright start thanks to Ramirez.

Ramirez was on hand to slam home a rebound for his 10th goal of the campaign after Erik Johansen spilled Miguel Ibarra's long-range shot, but Callens equalised in the 38th minute to ensure scores were level at half-time.

And it was one-way traffic from that point as Harrison put New York ahead seven minutes into the second half before Villa - singlehandedly - sealed the three points in the Big Apple.

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