Frank Lampard scored a hat-trick as New York City FC consolidated top spot in the Eastern Conference with a resounding 5-1 victory over 10-man Colorado Rapids.
The treble was the first scored by a City player in MLS and took the former England international’s tally to eight goals in his last eight games.
Tony Taylor and Steven Mendoza also found the net as Patrick Vieira’s men bounced back in style from last weekend’s disappointing derby defeat at the hands of New York Red Bulls.
The Rapids had come into the game having lost only once in their last 17 outings, but were already trailing to Lampard’s opener when Micheal Azira saw red eight minutes before half-time.
Pablo Mastroeni’s men never looked capable of forcing their way back into the contest after the defender’s premature departure, although Shkelzen Gashi did at least claim a consolation goal when he curled home a free-kick deep into stoppage time.
Lampard, meanwhile, had already seen two shots saved by visiting goalkeeper Tim Howard before firing home from close range on 28 minutes.
Taylor then doubled the hosts’ advantage as half-time approached, linking up neatly with Thomas McNamara and finding the net from just inside the box to claim his second goal of the campaign.
McNamara and Lampard both went close to increasing City’s lead before substitute Mendoza finally did so, beating Howard with a well-struck low shot 15 minutes from time.
Jack Harrison then teed up Lampard for his second following a swift break and the 38-year-old veteran secured the match ball six minutes from time by firing home from the spot after Harrison had been brought down in the box by Dominique Badji.
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