HARRISON, N.J. — It was a performance that left Patrick Vieira wishing the rules of the game were different.
In the most lopsided NY Derby match since the New York Red Bulls’ infamous 7-0 drubbing at Yankee Stadium two years ago, New York City FC fell into a two-goal hole after four minutes and never recovered from what their coach called an “unacceptable” display in a 4-0 defeat.
“If I had the chance to change all the 10 players on the field, I was going to do it at halftime,” Vieira said. “I wasn’t really happy with every single player on the field.”
The Red Bulls came into the match hungry and played with the necessary passion and desire expected in a rivalry match. NYCFC had no response. They were second to every ball, wilted under the Red Bulls’ high press and suffocating pressure in midfield, resulting in little to no service for David Villa.
Villa had just 34 touches — the fewest of any NYCFC starter — and had just one chance created, failing to register a shot before being subbed off in the 66th minute for Rodney Wallace.
“I don't want to talk about a single player,” Vieira said. “I think it was tough for David. He didn't have the support that he normally had. We didn't play as well as we could from the back. I think it was more a collective nightmare than just an individual.”
That reflected the mentality in the visitors locker room at Red Bull Arena, with Alex Ring summing up the harsh reality on the day.
“We have to be honest with ourselves and take responsibility for today,” he said. “Look in the mirror and we know the truth. This was a [expletive] game from us and we deserve to lose.”
For NYCFC to come with such a poor performance in a game that should mean so much made it even harder to swallow.
“We’ve got no excuses today,” Tinnerholm said. “They are the better team and more aggressive. They put the pressure high on and we did the mistakes in the wrong part of the field. They punished us very hard. The performance today was not acceptable.”