In a wet and windy evening, two of MLS’s original ten faced off for the 73rd time. The New York Red Bulls search for their second victory over the New England Revolution came up empty.
Despite both sides struggling to create dangerous opportunities, it was the Revs that broke the deadlock, winning on a late goal from Cristian Penilla, 1-0.
Chris Armas’ crew entered the match short-handed. Kaku was unavailable due to the red card he obtained in Kansas City. As a result, he turned to Vincent Bezecourt to fill in for the designated player. In addition to Kaku, Kemar Lawrence also did not make the trip due to illness.
The weather also had an effect on the match as well, raining incessantly since this morning, while playing on an artificial surface, the ball tends to play havoc with the goalkeepers, especially when shot from distance, reducing the “beautiful game” to a tense, physical slog in the first half.
Both teams struggled to create scoring opportunities. Diego Fagundez had an opportunity to put the home side in the lead, but his header from the center of the box drifted harmlessly wide to his left.
The Red Bulls would have an opportunity of their own as Marc Rzatkowski would find himself with the ball, rips a shot off his left foot from the center of the box, but only to be denied by Cody Cropper, who dove to his right to make the save, preserving the scoreless draw.
The second half was more of the same, with the exception of Bradley Wright-Philips and Juan Agudelo receiving yellow cards. The Revs, sensing the game has opened up, began to push numbers forward, with Teal Bunbury finding Diego Fagundez with a cross, only to push his shot over the bar.
The Revs broke through in the 73rd minute. The Revs created a chance on a counterattack. The play developed through Luis Caicedo, and Cristian Penilla blasted a low shot off the wet turf. Luis Robles got a hand on it, but couldn’t keep it out of the net.
What Went Right:
For the Revs, the near-lethal combo of Luis Caicedo with Cristian Penilla. Caiceo’s guile befuddled Vincent Bezecourt with darting runs in the midfield, and when paired with Penilla, who provided the only goal in the match.
What Went Wrong:
Once again, the midfield’s long standing issues remain, players not in the same page tactically, miscommunication in key moments, effectively starving the team offensively where goals are hard to come by. The loss of Kaku, due to his suspension was evident.
Photo by Bill Twomey Photography