The New York Red Bulls are keeping up with their crosstown rivals atop the Eastern Conference.
In a wild game Saturday night at Red Bull Arena, Dax McCarty scored the game-winner and assisted on two other goals to lift the Red Bulls to a thrilling 3-2 win over the Philadelphia Union that propelled them into a tie with New York City FC (51 points). Both New York clubs are battling with Toronto FC (49 points) for the top two spots in the East with the Red Bulls currently in first by virtue of tiebreakers.
Sacha Kljestan added a goal and an assist for the Red Bulls, who extended their club-record unbeaten streak to 14 games. Bradley Wright-Phillips tied NYCFC's David Villa for the MLS Golden Boot lead with his 21st goal to put the Red Bulls in front just after halftime.
Chris Pontius matched a career-high with his 12th goal of the season and also had an assist for the Union, who dropped to fifth place in the East as they look to secure their first playoff berth in five years.
The Union dealt with a big scare in the first half, though, when center back Joshua Yaro suffered an ugly collision and was stretchered off the field.
- RBNY: Dax McCarty getting closer to his best with standout performance vs. Union
- PHI: Injuries, poor marking hurt Philadelphia Union in road loss to Red Bulls
- 15' — PHI — Fabian Herbers (Chris Pontius, Fabinho)
- 44' — NY — Sacha Kljestan (Felipe, Dax McCarty)
- 47 — NY — Bradley Wright-Phillips (Dax McCarty)
- 55 — PHI — Chris Pontius (Fabinho)
- 66 — NY — Dax McCarty (Sacha Kljestan)
- Full box score
- Watch highlights
: The Audi 2016 MLS Cup Playoffs don’t start until later this month but this one certainly had a postseason feel as two rivals jockeying for seeding in the East traded goals and leads throughout. The Red Bulls overcome a 1-0 deficit to score two straight and the Union tied it back up before the Red Bulls took the lead for good thanks to
McCarty’s cool finish
of a Kljestan free kick in the 66th minute. Big players came through with big games with Pontius and Kljestan continuing their huge seasons and Wright-Phillips continuing to pour in the goals – and letting everyone know about it.
They Said It
"Talking to Sacha and Dax coming off the field, that was a real game … That had the look and feel of a playoff game."
—Philadelphia Union head coach Jim Curtin