|photo by Matt Kremkau
HARRISON, NJ - The New York Red Bulls, still searching for their first win of the Gerhard Struber era, squared off against the equally winless Chicago Fire on a sun-splashed Saturday afternoon at Red Bull Arena.
Early in the first half, the fans in attendance were treated to less than entertaining soccer as neither side wanted to firmly put the match on their terms. Errant passes in midfield and rough fouls abound made for an unwatchable brand of soccer. The Fire then began to settle down and started to make headway, but couldn't get past the New York defense.
In fact, just about the only two scoring chances the Red Bulls could manage was Fabio's shot went off the post. Tom Barlow also had a chance to score the match's first goal, but his shot went wide right.
But all that would change two minutes in the second half as Fabio held the ball on the right end line, and sent it back to the middle of the box, where there was no one to meet it. Thankfully, Casseres flew into the area and smacked it home for his second goal in as many games.
The Red Red Bulls doubled the lead in the 64th. First, Kyle Duncan caused a turnover deep in the Fire end and got the ball to Sean Davis. A floater in the box was headed back by the gigantic Fabio and landed with Clark. The youngster pierced the net for his second goal of the season.
Cristian Casseres nearly put the Red Bulls up by three, but his deft pass just missed the outstretched feet of Brian White, who was looking to tap home the ball in front of a wide-open net. The Red Bulls would control the ball and the game the rest of the half, cementing their first win of the 2021 season and giving a happy and relieved Gerhard Struber, his first as the Red Bulls' head coach.
Unused Subs: Ryan Meara; John Tolkin, Amro Tarek, Cameron Harper, Tom Edwards
Chicago Fire (4-2-3-1): Bobby Shuttleworth; Boris Sekulić, Jonathan Bornstein, Johan Kappelhof, Francisco Calvo (C), Mauricio Pineda, Luka Stojanovic (Elliot Collier, 61’), Alvaro Medran (Chinoso Offor, 69’), Przemyslaw Frankowski (Brian Gutierrez, 69’), Gaston Gimenez, Robert Berić
Unused Subs: Jhon Espinoza, Wyatt Omsberg, Chris Brady, Andre Reynolds II, Javier Casas, Alex Monis,
47' (New York Red Bulls) Cristian Casseres Jr. (Fabio)
64' (New York Red Bulls) Caden Clark (Fabio)
42' (New York Red Bulls) Sean Davis
44' (Chicago Fire) Boris Sekulić
62' (Chicago Fire) Francisco Calvo