The New York Red Bulls snapped a four-match winless streak and got interim coach Bradley Carnell his first victory with Aaron Long and Daniel Royer scoring a goal in each half in a 2-0 victory over rival D.C. United Saturday night at Audi Field.
A D.C. United team that failed to take a shot in a 0-0 draw against New York City FC, took a more offensive tact Saturday night. New signing Gelmin Rivas took the club’s first shot in the 24th minute and strike partner Ola Kamara had D.C.’s first shot on frame in two games, easily saved by Ryan Meara in the 32nd minute.
Meara was truly tested a few minutes later, but made a pair of stunning saves to deny Julian Gressel and Rivas in quick succession. However the veteran, who has patiently waited for his chance to again become the team’s No. 1 goalkeeper left the match in the 62nd minute with an apparent right knee injury.
Two minutes earlier, Royer doubled the lead on the hour mark with a left-footed volley from 11 yards out off a cross from Jason Pendant. It was his first goal since scoring in a Week 1 win over FC Cincinnati March 1.
- THE BIG PICTURE: The Red Bulls desperately needed a win after losing three of their last four, including back-to-back defeats to D.C. United and the Philadelphia Union by a combined 4-0. D.C. showed a more attacking tact than in their last two games, but this time the result wasn’t there and Ben Olsen’s squad now has just one win in their last nine regular season games.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Meara came up with a pair of huge saves late in the first half, including this one that denied Rivas the equalizer. That goal goes in, who knows how it changes the course of the match.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Kaku was the influential playmaker we all knew he could be, and has shown in flashes. The Red Bulls No. 10 assisted on both goals and probably should have had a third helper if Royer hadn’t thrashed this attempt off the mark.