ANALYSIS: Home and away, the New York Red Bulls faced the two Eastern Canadian teams this week. They battled to a scoreless draw midweek against Toronto. Back in Harrison, the Red Bulls defeated Montreal 2-1. This is what you need to know.
Red Bull vs Canada: What We Learned
Our Home and Native Land
Toronto FC has not found much success this season, and are languishing at the bottom of the Eastern Conference. A scoreless draw didn’t move the needle, either. But it’s not like the Red Bulls have much room to talk. There but for the grace of good results go New York. The two recent 1-0 wins bolstered confidence. Troy Lesesne is enjoying his ‘new manager bump’… at home. While there were some good chances, the trip north of the border only garnered one point. The undefeated streak lived on for another game as well as collecting another clean sheet for goalkeeper Carlos Coronel.
READ MORE: CF Montreal’s Impressive Form Continues
We See Thee Rise
Any fan can trace the Red Bulls’ woes to their lack of scoring. Pulling out a last-minute leveler was okay at best, but doesn’t work in the long term. Wins matter. So when New York took the lead not once but twice in the first half, it was pleasant surprise.
#RBNY First half MLS goals 2023:
at ORL 0
v NSH 0
at MNU 0
v CLB 0
at CLT 1
at ATL 0
v SJ 0
v HOU 0
at MTL 0
at CHI 0
v PHI 0
v NYC 0
at TFC 0
v MTL 2
— Mark Fishkin (@MarkFishkin) May 21, 2023
The game could have taken a downturn had VAR not overturned the offside call for striker Cory Burke’s goal in the 38-minute. As it was, the forced delay to celebrate the goal diminished the joy. Lesesne, in his post-match press conference, expressed his relief: “we were creating chances, and luckily we got the right call in our favor.”
Stand On Guard
Not so long ago, RBNY were known for losing their grip on close games in the waning minutes of a match. In their first clash this season, Montreal scored a second goal two minutes into stoppage time, despite being down a man. Not only did the home team hold on to their lead to the halftime whistle, but also through the entire second half. Lesesne saw that second half as “almost a completely different match,” as he told Last Word. He gave all the credit to the players: “we were up for it– again, that’s the players saying they they are ready to do anything possible to see out the three points.”
New York, having defeated Montreal, faces FC Cincinnati in the next round of the Open Cup on Tuesday.
READ MORE: RBNY Preview
Photo Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports of a Rudy Camacho Headshot and a Cory Burke Headshot on May 20, 2023.