Forward Patrick Mullins was one of the most prolific scorers for New York City FC during its inaugural season a year ago. He finished second on the team with six goals, averaging 0.52 goals per 90 minutes — also second on the team.
The 24-year-old from New Orleans, a two-time Hermann Trophy winner during his college career at Maryland, spoke with amNewYork about soccer and the Big Apple.
What did you think of New York City when you first visited?
I thought, “Wow, what did I get myself into?” It’s a much bigger city than I had ever experienced before, but I was excited because there’s a buzz about it that I can appreciate.
How do you like riding the subway?
The subway is OK. I’m more of a Metro North type of guy. It’s a little more “luxurious,” or at least as luxurious as a train can get. But I don’t mind the subway when I’m in the city.
What do you love and hate most about the city?
I love the activities and all the different things you can try in the city. You never run out of stuff to do. But on the other hand, there’s a lot of people wanting to do those same activities, so sometimes it gets too crowded for me, and I need some space to breathe and think. But I really like the city, overall.
Favorite restaurant in the city?
I really enjoy Saxon + Parole. It’s a nice date spot, and it has really good food. They have a s’mores dessert that they bring out in a little jar with the marshmallow still smoking. Pretty cool.
What is your favorite off-the-pitch memory of the city?
When my family visited. My brother and my parents came out and we got to be tourists for about two days. It was cool to show them where I live and a city that we always had wanted to visit together as a family.
Favorite New York team other than New York City FC?
I’d have to say the Rangers. I watch them the most out of any other New York team. Madison Square Garden is a really exciting place to watch such a high intensity sport like hockey. Plus, they have a really strong group of fans in New York.
Do you have any game-day rituals?
I keep it simple on game days. No voodoo or witchcraft. I just get a good meal and try to keep my mind off anything too stressful.
Who was your childhood soccer hero?
My first childhood hero was Ryan Giggs, who used to play for Manchester United. One of my youth coaches told me we shared a similar style of play, so I picked him out pretty early and followed him throughout his career.
Do you have a hidden talent?
Nothing I’d actually consider a talent. But I am decent at juggling.