(photo from FC Cincinnati)
With only a single point needed to send the New York Red Bulls into the knockout rounds of the MLS is Back tournament, FC Cincinnati's head coach Jaap Stam's strategy was simple: Sit back, absorb the pressure employed by the Red Bulls and wait for the moment to strike, and make the most of them.
The result was a somewhat sleepy first half where there were just two shots on goal which one of them belonged to Frankie Almaya, which was easily saved by David Jensen.
Snakebitten by Mistakes - AgainIn 43rd minute, Jason Pendant was out-hustled by Andrew Gutman who brought the ball up the sideline. Yuya Kubo intercepted a clearance by Amro Tarek and completed the play with a finish to put FC Cincinnati ahead, 1-0.
In the second half, disaster struck in the 56th minute. Off a corner kick, Haris Medunjanin sends a blistering shot toward the corner of the net, only to be deflected off the head of Florian Valot and the hands of David Jensen to put FC Cincinnati up 2-0. FC Cincinnati's defense did the rest, simply sitting back while the Red Bulls threw cross after cross only to be denied until the final whistle.
Three Points:For the second straight match, right from kickoff, there was a lot of possession, but no urgency, and a lack of execution.The urgency only showed up late in the match, when New York was trailing.
FC Cincinnati played their game, just like what they did with Atlanta United. They sat back and waited for their opportunity and when it came, they exploited it. Although they had chances, the Red Bulls could not take advantage. As such, the New York Red Bulls were sent home and out of the MLS is Back tournament.
Author: Garry Redman