Ryan Meara made a huge save on Fafa Picault and all five New York players scored in a shootout as the Red Bulls advanced in penalties, 5-3. Felipe buried the game-winning penalty kick after the game was deadlocked at 1-1 through regulation and extra time Wednesday night in the USOC Round of 16.
The Red Bulls — who were knocked out of the Open Cup in each of the last two seasons by Philly, including a 2015 shootout at Red Bull Arena — were coasting toward a win when Roland Alberg scored a dramatic 86th-minute equalizer, collecting a long pass from Jack Elliott behind the backline and firing one past Meara.
Meara and McCarthy had both made huge saves before that to keep the game deadlocked and kept things level in extra time to send the rivalry showdown into penalties.
The Red Bulls, who have now beaten the Union twice in the last 10 days, move on to face the New England Revolution, a 2-1 winner over D.C. United, in the quarterfinals.
- 42’ — NY — Sacha Kljestan
- 86' — PHI — Roland Alberg
PENALTY PERFECTION: The Union looked to have all the momentum after Alberg’s late equalizer, threatening to score the winner on a few different occasions in extra time. But the Red Bulls were able to regroup for the shootout as Sal Zizzo, Gonzalo Veron, Daniel Royer, Kljestan and Felipe all beat McCarthy with well-placed penalties. The Union were also solid from the spot with Alberg, Chris Pontius and Marcus Epps scoring — but all it took was one Meara save on Picault to keep the Red Bulls alive in their quest for their first Open Cup crown.
RUNNING OUT OF MAGIC: The Union have enjoyed a lot of success in the Open Cup under head coach Jim Curtin, who guided them to the finals in 2014 and 2015. And they’ve won several USOC games in extra time or in penalties, thanks in large part to McCarthy, their backup goalkeeper who had been 6-0 in the Open Cup before Wednesday. But on Wednesday, it was another backup ’keeper in Meara who was the man of the match, finishing with seven saves, including a monster double one on Picault early in the match, before his shootout heroics.
SACHA DELIVERS: It hasn’t been the most productive season for Kljestan, who's yet to score through 16 MLS games. But he came through with a big goal in the first half, thanks to some good teamwork with Wright-Phillips, and again in the shootout. The Red Bulls can only hope another one of their key veterans — Aurélien Collin — won’t miss any time after exiting with an injury in the 23rd minute. The same can be said for the Union, who saw both Derrick Jones and CJ Sapong also leave the game after going down.
Philadelphia Union lineup (4-2-3-1, left to right): #23 John McCarthy (GK) — #33 Fabinho, #3 Jack Elliott, #15 Josh Yaro, #12 Keegan Rosenberry — #6 Haris Medunjanin, #21 Derrick Jones — #22 Fafa Picault, #10 Roland Alberg, #17 CJ Sapong — #27 Jay Simpson
Substitutes: #29 Jake McGuire (GK), #28 Ray Gaddis, #5 Oguchi Onyewu, #4 Ken Tribbett, #20 Marcus Epps, #13 Chris Pontius, #24 Adam Najem
New York Red Bulls lineup (4-2-3-1, left to right): #18 Ryan Meara (GK) — #92 Kemar Lawrence, #78 Aurelien Colin, #55 Damien Perrinelle, #33 Aaron Long — #4 Tyler Adams, #8 Felipe — #27 Sean Davis, #16 Sacha Kljestan, #15 Sal Zisso — #99 Bradley Wright-Phillips
Substitutes: #31 Luis Robles (GK), #21 Brandon Allen, #6 Dan Metzger, #7 Derrick Etienne Jr., #5 Connor Lade, #77 Daniel Royer, #30 Gonzalo Veron