The Red Bulls lost to Santos Laguna, 4-2, in Leg 2 of the Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League Quarterfinals on Tuesday at Estadio Corona. Santos advanced to the SCCL Semifinals on aggregate, 6-2.
The Red Bulls lost the first leg at home, 2-0, on March 5, and it took them just four minutes to get one of them back.
Kaku connected with Daniel Royer, who found Omir Fernandez at the near post to finish in the fourth minute. This was Fernandez’s first professional goal in just 109 minutes of action this season.
Then, in the ninth minute, Bradley Wright-Phillips fed a pass across the face of the net for Royer to finish with a low-liner to double the lead in the ninth minute.
This was Royer’s third goal of SCCL tournament and fourth SCCL goal of his career. The Austrian winger finished the tournament with three goals and one assist.
This meant the aggregate was tied at 2, with each team holding two road goals, and it stayed that way until late in the second half.
Santos sealed the win with four goals in nine minutes, starting in the 72nd minute when Jose Abella got Santos on the board. Four minutes later, he set up Brian Lozano for another one. In the 79th minute, Diego Valdes scored on a feed from Deiner Quinones, and in the 81st, Lozano got an unassisted goal, his second of the night.
At this point, Santos Laguna held a 4-2 lead on the night and a commanding 6-2 lead on aggregate.
Wright-Phillips and Kaku both finished the match with an assist.
Recently acquired 18-year-old Danish striker Mathias Jørgensen made his New York debut in the 65th minute as he subbed on for Florian Valot.
The Red Bulls lost back-to-back matches for the first time since March 31-April 4, 2018, nearly a year ago, when they dropped a road match to Orlando City SC then at Chivas four days later.
The Red Bulls will host its MLS home opener against the San Jose Earthquakes on Saturday at Red Bull Arena. Kickoff is slated for 3:30 p.m. ET with coverage on Univision.