NYC FC Can’t Solve Red Bulls In Front of Record Crowd at Yankee Stadium
Red Bulls struck three times in second half.
It was more promising when the skies were dark and NYCFC came out cracking. Playing their best overall half of the season they went into halftime up 1-0 at the expense of their rival, The Red Bulls. In the second half, the skies cleared and brightness covered Yankee Stadium. NYCFC paid the bill as the New York Red Bulls (6-5-5, 23 points) came out quick and struck three times for a 3-1 win and now are two for two against their expansion team rival.
The mood in the New York City Football Club (4-8-5, 17 points) locker room was one of silence as collectively they had no words to describe the disappoint of what could have been. What if Chris Wingert, who collided with a Red Bull player, didn’t have to leave 24 minutes into the game.
What if Frank Lampard and Andrea Pirlo were dressed in NYC blue instead of sitting in the stands? Its the topic NYCFC refuses to answer.
What if David Villa can focus on putting away opportunities instead of demanding answers from Red Bull Goalie Luis Robles which weren’t going to change the double yellows that incurred.
It started so well, as Dix Misterud caught a pass and lifted it over to Thomas McNamara who chested it down and swept it to right foot and an early score six minutes in. In the audience, LL Cool J was enjoying the show with his NYC cap and all seemed good.
“We came out well. Its how you want to start games,” McNamara spoke afterwards. “When they came out at halftime and scored, momentum was with them and we fought to get it back.”
They nearly got another, with Dix, Wingert, and Villa getting opportunities. “If we had scored that second goal I think we would have had a very different game,” NYCFC Head Coach Jason Kreis said.
Josh Saunders came out and punched balls out, cut off crosses, and kept his net trim and neat.
The second half was a testament to the Red Bulls strength and pedigree in the attack three. Wright-Phillips, denied again and again, finally broke the imaginary wall tying it at 1-1 three minutes in when he captured a cross from Sacha Kljestanand and lasered a left-footed drive pass Saunders for his team leading sixth.
Six minutes later, a crowded box was navigated by a short pass and header by Anatole Abang and Chris Duvall rocketed it in for his first MLS goal and suddenly it was 2-1 Red Bulls. NYCFC tried long balls in counter attempts that were way to far to snare for NYC forwards. In the 63rd minute, David Villa was hit over the top by RB goalie Robles. If it was the NBA it woukd have been a foul and free throws. Here, all Villa would get is the satisfaction of a conversation of Villa venting.
It was nine minutes later when Matt Miazga flew over a dense crowd to head in the third also set up by Sacha Kljestan second assist. It was Miazga first goal in MLS as well. NYC Defender Shay Facey, who has been a great addition on the back four explained what happened, “They were alot stronger than us in midfield. They won second balls and drove at the heart.” Shay pointed out, “We sort of got tired but the best team won.”
The Red Bulls were denied further scores due to an improved defense often led by Shay, who picked off his fair share and Josh Saunders, who continued to play at an elite level. NYC tried here and there to close the gap but never were able to. “Obviously in a game like this, there are a lot of things that could be improved.” Mix Diskerud recalled.
Overall, a nearly filled Yankee Stadium (48,047, a record for NYCFC) and another competitive derby match has if nothing else established that this series can only get hotter. For the Red Bulls, its two in a row and now over .500. The NYCFC leave knowing they did their best but are probably two stars away from getting better. “He’s a legendary player (Lampard) and he will add a lot to the Club.” Diskerud summarized.
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