The Red Bulls suffered their worst loss of the year at home on Friday night when they lost to Orlando City FC 5-2 on Friday night.
Cyle Larin had a hat trick for Orlando City, and their superstar Kaka had two assists.
New York is now 14-9-6 on the season, and remain in first place in the Eastern Conference entering the weekend. The Red Bulls are also tied on points with Vancouver atop the Supporter’s Shield standings.
It is just the third loss of the season for New York at Red Bull Arena. New York had won its previous six at home dating back to a victory over Real Salt Lake on June 24.
The Red Bulls found the woodwork twice in first half stoppage time, both on headers. Damien Perrinelle put a chance squarely off the crossbar, and Bradley Wright-Phillips also hit the far post after redirecting a cross from the left wing.
The goal was Sam’s eighth of the season, good for second on the team behind Bradley Wright-Phillips. It was the first MLS assist for Veron, who now has a goal and an assist in eight appearances, including one start, after signing with New York as a Designated Player from San Lorenzo in his native Argentina.
The second Red Bulls’ goal came just one minute after referee Jorge Gonzalez ejected New York head coach Jesse Marsch from the match.
Orlando responded with another counter-attack goal three minutes later, with Rivas finding a streaking Larin, who completed the hat trick with a rocket just under the crossbar. Bryan Rochez, who replaced Larin in the second half, completed the scoring just before the final whistle, playing a quick give-and-go with Kaka and finishing with a shot just inside the right post.
New York Red Bulls center back Matt Miazga was ejected after being shown a second yellow card in the 79th minute.
New York Red Bulls Head Coach Jesse Marsch
On Orlando’s ability to counterattack:
The answer to that is yes, they did well to get out of tight spots at different moments. Credit to them – I thought Orlando played very well tonight. We were a little bit late on our shifting and sliding in dealing with things and they’re good on the ball, and then we lose some balls in bad spots and maybe we over-commit and then all of a sudden we’re on our heels. Combined with that, it’s a night where you feel like everything that can go wrong does. You have nights like this; we’re not immune to it. I feel strongly that we’re a good team but there’s going to be nights where everything seems to go against you. That’s what tonight was. I promise you this: this team won’t be phased by this. It’s a hard one to take, it’s a kick in the teeth, but we will find a way to regroup and we’ll be ready to go again next weekend.
On conceding the first goal in a few recent games:
That’s a good point. I mean, if you want the statistics in the league, if you give up the first goal your chances aren’t good. So yeah, I actually thought that we had a really good start to the game. We were pushing the game really well, then they get a set piece and get a goal, we get one back and they lose a center back, move a left-back to center-back and now you feel like ‘alright, the game’s there for us.’ But they put together some good plays. That second goal was a good goal, and the ball that Rivas plays to Larin is a good ball and it’s a good finish. You know, Larin is a big threat on the night, so we don’t do well enough there. It’s a desperate team that absolutely needs points. Was our mentality not right? Were we a little on cruise control? I don’t think so. But we’ll have to look at it a little more carefully and then identify exactly how the three goals came on these counters and where we became susceptible.
On Matt Miazga’s ejection:
I don’t want to comment on that. I don’t want to comment on that.
On the defense bouncing back:
Well, that’s the first part. [Ronald] Zubar will become very important. Four games without Matt [Miazga] – first of all, the first yellow card that Matt gets isn’t even a foul. I don’t know what the referee sees on that to not only call foul but to give a yellow, I don’t see that. So it’s not a foul, and then Matt gets himself in trouble on the second one. Losing Matt for four games will be tough, you know, but we’ve been resilient all year and Ronald’s fully healthy so it’s time for him to show everything that he’s about. It hasn’t been an easy year for him but now we need him and we’ll need him to step in and do this job and I’m very, very confident that he will. Very confident that he’s going to show his teammates and everyone what kind of player he is. I’m actually excited for him to get this run of games. Yeah, the back line got exposed tonight, and it was weird because even when it was 2-1 the game felt like it was still there. And then even when it was 3-1 I felt like the game was still there and then it was 3-2 and the game was certainly there, and it was just that they were good on the counter, they were – Kaka helped on some plays, Larin was very dangerous in between the center backs and we got punished for it. So, a little bit late on rotations, and then putting guys on their heels a little bit and going down early is a recipe for a disastrous night.
On whether the team lost some fight after clinching a playoff spot last weekend:
Well I think the game in Portland was a big win in a lot of different ways and on a lot of different levels. I felt that our team was focused coming into this, and we knew what an important game this was, and we knew that there was still a long way to go in the season. There are – there are so many twists and turns left in this. Everyone started talking about us with the Supporters’ Shield and all this crap, but I don’t care about the Supporters’ Shield. I just want us to continue to move along and tonight was a step backwards for us, but that’s okay. That’s okay, you know, we’re gonna learn from it, we’re gonna become stronger for it. The guys will have the weekend off, they’ll have some time to get away, and we’ll get back Monday and get right back after it again so we won’t be phased.
New York Red Bulls Midfielder Dax McCarty:
On this game being more poor Red Bulls play or better OCSC play:
I think it was a combination of a few things. We knew they were a good team and we knew they would come in here and try to win, so we were prepared for a tough game. We were pretty poor on the night, defensively, all over the field. I think our pressure was a little off. We weren’t winning the ball high up the field like we usually do, but then again, when you let a team score every time they come down the field into your defensive half, it’s going to be a long night.
On there being a hangover from the last match:
I don’t think [we had a hangover from last match]. I think we’re a mature enough team. I think we realize just because we made the playoffs, just because we were coming off a good performance in Portland, doesn’t mean that we were automatically to be gifted a win at home. Orlando has been a pretty good team for the most part this year. They’ve dealt with a lot of injuries, we knew that they were close to full strength and that they’d be dangerous.
On if the team’s play style changed after getting back in the game:
No I don’t think so. We play the way that we play and it’s been effective for us all season. I just think on the night, our pressure wasn’t quite right. I think that our front six didn’t do a good enough job winning the ball up the field, and I don’t think they were too dangerous from their possession, but then again, when they won the ball from us and they counter-attacked us, they just scored, it felt like every time they attacked so that’s something we need to sort out.
On Matt Miazga’s absence:
It’s a blessing in disguise probably to get Ronald [Zubar] back, and get him a couple games. He’s had a tough season with injuries so I think he’s been itching for a couple games so I think this is a great opportunity for him and I think it’s going to be good to have that depth going into the post-season.
New York Red Bulls Midfielder Lloyd Sam
On the match:
I wasn’t even really aware of who scored, it just seemed like the same goal over and over so we’re going to have to watch it and see what happened, but it appeared they got us on the counter over and over again.
On being concerned about giving up early goals:
It’s not just [letting up the early goal]. They get that one, we get one right back. They get another one, we come out of halftime they get another, so there are a lot of concerns in that game we just played right now, but we’ll have to address that.
On how difficult of a defeat that was:
We’ve been doing amazing, especially in this building, and that was the first game we lost here in months so we’re not going to take that too much to heart, but [games like that] can always happen, and that happened today. It was a bad day, we put that past us and go at it again.
On Jesse getting sent off:
It didn’t really affect us on the field much, what affected more was [us continuing] to concede goals. It’s more than that. When we get back to 3-2 and we got 30 minutes left in the game, and then we concede another to go up to 4, it’s difficult after things like that. It’s those bigger moments in the game, rather than [Jesse getting sent off].
New York Red Bulls Midfielder Sacha Kljestan:
On his thoughts of the match:
We had a lot of things go wrong, and not a lot of things go right tonight, so maybe on another night, we put a goal away before them and it would be a different game, but tonight, disappointing.
On falling behind early:
I thought we could have scored first. We started the game on the right foot, we give up a goal, but we get one right back so we showed a good mentality, but unfortunately we gave up three goals in almost the exact same way tonight, and when you do that, it’s tough to win.