It was ugly. It was frustrating. It was another road game without a win for the New York Red Bulls.
Seconds before stealing what would have been their first win at Gillette Stadium since 2002, the Red Bulls surrendered a last-gasp goal to Darrius Barnes that gave the New England Revolution a 1-1 draw and extended New York’s winless run on the road to nine games, a stretch that dates back to May 19.
The frustration on the Red Bulls players’ faces following Barnes’ first MLS goal said it all. Not only had they failed to win in their house of horrors despite taking a late lead courtesy of a 91st-minute goal from Joel Lindpere, but they did so despite playing with a man down after Connor Lade had been sent off in the 74th minute.
“We were one man down and if they score [in the] 80th minute or something then it’s understandable,” said Lindpere, who came off the bench to replace an injured Rafa Marquez in the 35th minute. “But when you score 90th minute and you get this air balloon ball in box and nobody’s taking care of it, then it feels bad.
“In this situation when we know that we haven’t won 10 years here and they give you a gift as a three points then you just don’t use, so it’s like a gift card that you throw away. It’s frustrating. We didn’t lose but it feels like losing.”
That New York, who were playing without the suspended Thierry Henry, could even feel that way after the subpar offensive performance they put forth may be reason enough for some optimism in the coming days. But the Red Bulls made it clear just how disappointed they were following the game that left them with only six points gained from their last five matches.
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“I was thinking ‘we’re going to win this game,” and we were so close,” said Lindpere. “We just as a team couldn’t manage this. That’s a tough situation. We are not strong enough to keep the result as this and there is still time to do our replays and look over what we should do, but we have done it all year and the time is clicking.”
The Red Bulls are still in third place in the Eastern Conference after Saturday night’s result, but both D.C. United and the Houston Dynamo could make things tougher on New York if they win their respective games on Sunday. And that makes the last four games of the season all that more important if the Red Bulls wish to make the postseason in a tight Eastern Conference.
“If we had won today it’s been one more win and we in for sure,” said Lindpere. “But now we make it difficult for ourselves, but we’re a strong team and I think we’re going to definitely reach playoffs.”
Franco Panizo covers the New York Red Bulls for MLSsoccer.com. He can be reached at Franco8813@gmail.com.