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Red Bulls Advance, Crown Charlotte FC 3-1

photo by Matt Kremkau

MONTCLAIR, NJ - Patryk Klimala's early goal powered the New York Red Bulls into the quarterfinals of the U.S. Open Cup by knocking off Charlotte FC, 3-1, at MSU Soccer Park Wednesday night.

After swiftly dispatching their bitter rivals, D.C, United in Washington, the team was looking to reach the quarterfinals for the tenth time in their history. For Gerhard Struber and his crew, the match was yet another test to see if they are worthy of being called one of the elite squads in MLS. 

The Red Bulls didn't take very long to get on the scoreboard. Just two minutes in off a set-piece, the ball bounced around free in the box, but Patryk Klimala could pounce on it, and just like that, the hosts had the lead.

Just as things began to settle down and the fans started to catch their collective breath, the visitors struck back just six minutes later. Daniel Rios took a long ball pass from Andre Shinyashiki, got around the New York defense, and slotted home the equalizer. 

The match's pace was breathtaking as both teams went for it on every play, with hard tackles exhibited by both teams looking to establish a position on every deep ball. 

New York took the lead in the 64th minute when Klimala dribbled past the Charlotte backline and played a ball across their goal box, which found the incoming Dylan Nealis, who tapped the ball in the back of the net.

For Patryk Klimala, it was a rare and unique evening, and he added his first career Open Cup assist and his fourth across all competitions this season.

The Red Bulls added a third goal in the 92nd minute after Luquinhas dribbled into Charlotte's box and played it right across to Tom Barlow, who tapped it in as the supporters exploded in sheer delight.


Still stinging after their loss against Inter Miami, the Red Bulls responded with a colossal win taking them one step further in this competition, advancing to the quarterfinals for the tenth time in its history.

Klimala's goal in the second minute was the quickest U.S. Open Cup goal scored by a Red Bulls player in franchise history.

The only black (and blue) mark in the match was Gerhard Struber complaining that his star midfielder, Luquinhas, was constantly fouled all evening, to the point where he feared for his safety. Nearly every infraction was ignored by referee Constantine, who referred to his reasons for doing so as "crazy."

Nevertheless, the team once again moves on, where this time they face their bitter local rivals, New York City Football Club, for a derby match that will surely be the highlight of the competition.


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