Red Bulls Shut Out Again As Tough Start Continues

(Kansas City’s Benny Feilhaber runs past the net after scoring a goal, with Red Bulls goalie Luis Robles looking on – Photo by Mike Lawrence – Sportsday Wire)

The New York Red Bulls were shut out by Sporting Kansas City, 2-0, on Saturday night, dropping their record to 1-4 on the season.

The Red Bulls have been shut out in all four of their losses, a big letdown for an offense that was one of the most potent last season, in which they won the Supporters’ Shield for best record.

Kansas City got goals from Benny Feilhaber in the 17th minute and Dom Dwyer in the 60th minute.

The Red Bulls didn’t score, but it wasn’t for lack of effort, as they powered in 22 shots, with six on goal. Their best scoring chance came late, when Sacha Kljestan set up Sean Davis with a big chance, and he banged it off the post.

Anatole Abang of the Red Bulls bringing a ball down with Sporting KC's, Ike Opara on him. Photo by Mike Lawrence.
Anatole Abang of the Red Bulls bringing a ball down with Sporting KC’s, Ike Opara on him. Photo by Mike Lawrence.

Red Bulls Head Coach Jesse Marsch said of the offensive struggles, “To be honest with you, I’m not sure how to explain it, right. I mean, I know when I’m watching the team play that it’s a good team and that we’re in many ways, we’re executing game plans the right way, and in a lot of these games I think we came out in many ways as the better team on the day but walk away with not enough goals and giving up too many. So, obviously, that is a recipe for losses.

“So, the one thing that I will say is that my belief in our team being a good team hasn’t wavered at all. It’s just a funny thing to see how things have materialized in these early parts of the season. I mean, you could almost draw a lot of little cliches and metaphors for what happened tonight as what’s been happening in our season.

“So we can’t feel sorry for ourselves. The breaks will come eventually as long as we stick together and keep playing hard and keep playing well,” said Marsch.

Alex Muyl of the Red Bulls battling for position with Sporting KC's Amadou Dia. Photo by Mike Lawrence.
Alex Muyl of the Red Bulls battling for position with Sporting KC’s Amadou Dia. Photo by Mike Lawrence.

Marsch said of the Red Bulls’ production in the final third of the field, or offensive zone, “Certainly, the goalkeeper (Tim Melia) had a great night. Made some huge saves. I mean, you have to credit Kansas City in general to come here and get a shutout against what I consider is a good team. We’re a good team, and we’re a good attacking team. For them to get a shutout in our place, that’s a good accomplishment for them. Certainly on the day, their goalkeeper was their star.”

Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips said of not being able to convert his chances into goals, “I remember last season missing two penalties in a game, so it’s frustrating obviously as a striker when you’re getting the chances you want to put them away, but again, it just wasn’t the day. The keeper made some decent saves, and I’m disappointed in the penalty. The chances I am hitting the target, but the penalty, I’ve got to be scoring that one. It was a chance to get back in the game, and I messed up.”

Marsch said of the goals conceded in this one, “Yeah, the first play is a little bit of a breakdown and we allow a couple of plays to get away from us, and then they’ve created a three-on-one basically. So that’s partly tactical and partly not dealing with a couple of plays coming at them. Then the second one, Chris (Duvall), gets a little too tight on Dwyer and he’s strong and clever and slips away, and all of a sudden he’s right there on the goal. So, hard to explain that. Hard to explain that. Hard to explain how we can create so many things and be so dangerous an they don’t create much but wind up walking away with two (goals).”

Marsch said of Chris Duvall’s play, “For the most part very good. Then he let the goal slip away from him, and that’s often the difference between what it’s like to play outside back and center back. Center back, you almost have to be 100 percent on the day with plays, so he let one slip and it cost us a goal. But overall for a guy who is filling in for us, who is trying to do the job the best level that he can and committing to it and not afraid of competing, he’s going to be hard on himself. I saw his head down. I was trying to say to him don’t worry about it. He filled in great for the team tonight. It’s just unlucky that now he lets one slip away.”



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