MLS Soccer Sunday: Red Bulls Draw In Atlanta; NYCFC Loses At Home

(NYCFC battling Portland at Yankee Stadium Sunday night – Photo by Jason Schott)

On Sunday, the Red Bulls earned a 3-3 draw on the road against Atlanta United, while New York City Football Club lost a tough one, 2-1, to the Portland Timbers, at Yankee Stadium.

The Red Bulls are now 8-4-7, with 28 points, in sixth place in the Eastern Conference, just one point behind NYCFC, who have 29 points and fell to 7-8-2.

Red Bulls 3, Atlanta 3:

Atlanta got on the board just 10 minutes in when Justin Meram beat Kyle Duncan one-on-one and finished to the far post.

The Red Bulls tied it in the 37th minute when Alex Muyl forced a turnover, swung his pass across the top of the 18-yard box for Marc Rzatkowski. Rzatkowski swung his pass to the left for Daniel Royer, who curled his shot past Brad Guzan to the far post. It was Royer’s fifth goal of the season and Rzatkowski and Muyl earned assists on the play.

In the second half, the Red Bulls took the lead in the 61st when they created another turnover and saw a tic-tac-toe of passes until Brian White finished to the near post for his sixth goal of the season. Royer and Muyl earned assists on the play.

Atlanta came back with a bang late when Josef Martinez scored a pair of goals, the first on a penalty kick in the 79th and another in the 91st. He now has 12 on the season.

The Red Bulls were not finished, as Bradley Wright-Phillipstied it in the 93rd minute.  It was his second goal of 2019 and first since March 16.

BWP now has 108 career MLS goals to move into a tie for seventh all-time with Jason Kreis .

Portland 1, NYCFC 0:

The lone goal of this one came in the 14th minute when Portland had a free kick, which was curled in by Diego Valeri and finished off by Sebastian Blanco after NYC failed to clear from their zone.

NYCFC had plenty of chances the rest of the way, especially in the second half.

In the 67th minute, Maxi Moralez had a blast in the box which was deflected by a sliding Portland defender, Marco Farfan, which left NYCFC pleading for a handball to be called, but to no avail.

In the 76th minute, Portland nearly doubled their lead when Jeremy Ebobisse came in on the right side and fired one of the post.

Two minutes later, NYCFC had a big chance when Jesus Medina received a volley in the box, but shot it over the bar.

In the 91st, NYCFC had control in the Portland end when Anton Tinnerholm had a big chance down the right side, and Portland goalkeeper Steve Clark made a big save.

In the 94th, NYCFC was given a free kick near midfield, which was taken by Alex Ring, and he sent it into the box, where Ebenezer Ofori had an opening in traffic, but headed it over the bar.

That was their last chance, and NYCFC’s 12-game unbeaten streak was over. This was also the end of their three-game homestand, in which they won the first two games, over Philadelphia, 4-2, on Saturday, June 29, and Seattle, last Wednesday, 3-0.

NYCFC Head Coach Domenec Torrent said of the game, “I think the team deserved more. I am very proud of them. It is not easy to play so many games without rest. We are missing some players but is not an excuse, it is a reality, but I am very proud of them. They deserved more. In the first half we made one mistake and when you make a mistake in soccer it punishes you. But we have to keep working…I am very proud of them. They played very well, especially the second half we deserved at least one goal, but sometimes that happens in soccer you are just unable to score a goal.”

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