SEATTLE, Wash. – Chad Barrett scored the first stoppage goal against the New York Red Bulls this season as the host Sounders earned a 2-1 comeback victory Sunday afternoon at CenturyLink Field.
New York dropped its first game of the season when scoring first and with the lead at halftime as the Sounders scored two goals in the second half for the win.
With the win, the Western Conference leading Sounders moved to 8-3-2 while New York dropped to 4-3-5. It marked the first time in 2015 the Red Bulls have lost consecutive games.
New York got the game’s first goal in the 36th minute as Lloyd Sam tallied his fourth goal of the season. Sam’s header came after Bradley Wright-Phillips’ shot from the top of the circle was deflected and Sam was first to react from five yards out to score the goal.
It was the first goal conceded by Seattle in the final 15 minutes of the first half this season and just the second goal for New York scored in the final 15 minutes of the first half.
Seattle had a terrific opportunity to score the game’s first goal in the game’s 12th minute as Cristian Roldan’s header from the center of the box off a free kick was on target, but Luis Robles made a terrific diving save to his left.
New York held a 6-3 advantage in shots in the game’s first 45 minutes, including a 3-1 advantage in shots on goal.
The Red Bulls almost held a 2-0 advantage in the 61st after Mike Grella’s curler from distance. But Stefan Frei came up with a big save of his own, laying out to keep the game 1-0.
The save would prove to be a big one, as the Sounders would equalize just minutes later. Pappa collected an Obafemi Martins ball in the left side of the box and made a terrific individual effort as he unloaded a laser shot into the top right corner to tie the game at one in the 69th minute.
The game looked to end in a draw for both sides before Seattle earned the game-winner in stoppage time. Seattle found the win in the 91st, with Tyrone Mears lifting a cross in from the right wing that Clint Dempsey latched onto at the back post. Dempsey hit the ball across the face of goal, with Barrett tapping it home into an empty net from close range.
New York looks to get back on track Friday, June 5 at Houston. Kickoff is set for 9 p.m. on Univision.
NEW YORK RED BULLS HEAD COACH JESSE MARSCH
On the game: “It’s gut-wrenching right now because we put a lot of good things together on the day and it’s another game where we feel like there’s a lot of good moments, but we don’t make them add up enough to good chances and then to goals. Then we let little plays slip away so it’s a really tough one to swallow right now, but we can’t hang our heads. We just have to dig in and now our backs are against the wall then figure out a way to get better.”
On losing the early lead then conceding a late goal: “Yeah, we were a little bit on our heels at the end of the second half, but at the same time, we had chances to make plays going on the counter on the other end. You knew when it was 1-1 that the game was still up for grabs a little bit. We tried to push and in the end, Clint Dempsey makes a really tough play. And that’s what you need – you need your big players in big moments to make big plays. We’re going to continue to push and we’re going to get there, but now we’re struggling to put full performances together.”
On the play of goalkeeper Luis Robles: “Luis, in the first half, made a very good save. He was very solid overall on crosses. He played like a man. You know, it’s a tough place to come in and play. It’s important that, when you come here, that you have a group that’s ready to dig in for every moment. On a lot of levels, we did, but we let two plays get away from us and we just couldn’t make them pay for a lot of little advantages that we had on the day.”
On Lloyd Sam’s first-half goal: “It was just being alert and ready for any loose balls and that was a good play. We needed a little bit of an effort. That’s where we are right now – we have some good things happening on the field, but we need the individual efforts to now continue to figure out ways to get goals. We’ll keep pushing.”
On the short week going to Houston and the difficult schedule ahead: “I feel like our backs are against the wall. We have a long flight back to New York, need to recover physically then have to figure out a way to get ready for a really tough game in Houston. Before we have a little break, I think we want to make sure that we finish strong so this is a really important week for our team.”
NEW YORK RED BULLS GOALKEEPER LUIS ROBLES
On the result: “Seattle’s a good team. We knew going into the second half that we were going to have maintain possession, we were going to have to create chances. We made a couple mistakes towards the end and because they are a good team they made us pay for it. It just continues to show the quality and class that they have in this organization.”
On his first-half save on Cristian Roldan’s header: “I’m not sure who hit it. I saw it late so I think even when I saved it the ball was behind me. It was just one of those moments that kept us in it in the first half and we were able to get a goal coming into halftime 1-0 in a good position. I felt with this team and the quality we had, that was a favorable position to be in to finish the last 45.”
On getting back on track after consecutive losses: “We’ve got to remember that it’s a long season and there’s going to be heartbreak but there’s also going to be jubilation. We have to continue to improve defensively; we’ve been getting punished for our mistakes. There hasn’t been any sort of grace there but we have not only the personnel but the management to work this out. We know that 12 games in, we’re not going to be perfect. There’s some things that continue to pop up; I know that we’ll address it and we’ll improve…Houston is going to be difficult because of the weather. They’ve had some strange weather over there but nonetheless it’s going to be a good matchup. Another opportunity for us to show against the Western Conference that the Eastern Conference is no joke, but more than anything it’s going to be a good chance for us to get back on track.”
NEW YORK RED BULLS MIDFIELDER SACHA KLJESTAN
On the result: “We’re obviously disappointed. This game’s a tough one to swallow. We put a lot effort into this game. Guys emptied their tanks, and it sucks but we need to be better closing out games. We talked about early in the season being a team that doesn’t give up a goal late in a game. So we’ve got ourselves to balme, we’ve got to look ourselves in the mirror and get ready again for next week.”
On the keys for the short week: “I think it’s important we’re taking the red-eye back tonight so that’ll be nice to be back home in the morning, have a good day off and then get back to work. We’ve got a couple of days of training and then go down to probably a hot and difficult game in Houston and it’s going to be another very difficult game, but it’s a big chance for us to step up and kind of get us back on the right foot.”
On not finding a second goal: “We got a couple of good opportunities, but maybe we lacked that killer instinct or maybe we just got a little bit unlucky. [Mike] Grella put one in the top corner that the goalie made a great save on. Other than that, we’ve got to just clean it up a little bit and make sure we’re not giving up chances. I think we gave up two pretty easy chances at the end of the game and they punished us for it.”