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Red Bulls' Defense Ices CF Montreal, 1-0

photo by Matt Kremkau


Lewis Morgan's lone goal was all the Red Bulls needed to stop a red-hot CF Montreal side, 1-0 at Stade Saputo Wednesday night.

Newly acquired winger Eliad Manoel formerly of Brazilian side Gremio, made his debut after Patryk Klimala picked up a knock during training before the match. With Kyle Duncan and John Tolkin serving suspensions, the Red Bulls had to deal with a makeshift backline consisting of Dylan and Sean Nealis, and Andres Reyes, completing a 3-4-2-1 formation as kickoff began.

Montréal nearly got on the scoreboard just two minutes in the match when Djordje Mihailovic took a great pass from Victor Wanyama, but his shot, taken from 35 yards outside the box, drifted wide to his left. Red Bulls responded three minutes later, as Lewis Morgan had an opportunity to put his team in the lead, taking a pass from Manoel, but his shot skipped wide to his left.

But the Red Bulls being the better team throughout the first half, broke through the stalemate in the 43rd minute. Lewis Morgan took a great pass from Cristian Casseres Jr. and chipped the ball past Montreal goalkeeper James Pantemis for his 13th goal of the season, stunning the Stade Saputo crowd into relative silence.

Montreal nearly had a chance to level the match in the 75th minute. Romell Quioto delivered a quick pass over to Mason Toye, who was inserted into the match and pushed the ball wide to his right, allowing the traveling supporters to breathe a sigh of relief.

The home side had one last chance to equalize three minutes into stoppage time as Romell Quioto headed the ball high and over the net during a set piece, which inured the home team would suffer their first loss after eight matches, giving the Red Bulls a joyous ride back home with their buoyant supporters as they get ready for a massive match against the Philadelphia Union Saturday evening at Red Bull Arena.

THE BIG PICTURE:

As far as road matches go, this was an instant classic for the Red Bulls, facing a team that has always given them nothing but headaches in this beautiful Canadian city until tonight. With two of his best defensive player sidelined with disciplinary issues, Gerhard Struber and his understudies put on a defensive clinic stifling CF Montreal's offensive stalwarts Romell Quioto and Djordje Mihailovic and kept them both scoreless and ineffective throughout the match.

The victory allowed the Red Bulls to set a club record with the most road wins and points, topping the 2018 team that won the Supporters Shield that season. Still, it came with a cost, as midfielder Christian Casses Jr. picked up a yellow card in the second half. Thus, he will be ineligible to play against Philadelphia on Saturday. Even without some of their players sidelined with such nagging disciplinary issues, they remain a force to be reckoned with on the road. 

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