Mistakes, miscues sink Red Bulls vs. D.C. United


WASHINGTON, D.C. – Wasting opportunities on the road is a cardinal sin in the soccer world, particularly on the road, and the Red Bulls were surely ready for repentance after yet another frustrating showing against D.C. United.

Mistakes cost New York the game on both sides of the ball as D.C. sunk the Red Bulls 2-0, temporarily pushing them out of the final Eastern Conference playoff spot.

“I mean, they took their two opportunities that we pretty much gave them,” Red Bulls boss Mike Petke said after the match. “And we had a number of opportunities to put the ball in the back of the net.”

D.C. continues their remarkable comeback season, going from worst to first, in control of the Eastern Conference (14-8-4, 46 pts.) by four points over perennial power Sporting K.C. (12-8-6, 42 pts.). With the loss, New York fall out of playoff contention, slipping to an unsightly 7-8-10 record (32 pts.) following their Supporters’ Shield winning season.

The Red Bulls created several chances throughout the night, starting with a Bradley Wright-Phillips roller off of an Henry feed that skipped wide of Hamid’s net. Minutes after, D.C. offered a challenge of their own as Silva and former Red Bull Fabian Espindola pushed the ball past the Red Bull defenders, but Silva’s shot was well covered by red-hot keeper Luis Robles.

New York continued a back and forth first half with another Wright-Phillips chance on net, this time a header. Hamid stretched out to cover the opportunity and bat the ball away from danger. Minutes from closing the half, Tim Cahill sent a shot ringing off of the left post in an otherwise quiet night for the Australian talisman.

Luis Silva broke the match open in the 57th minute, reading an Espindola flick-on past defender Ibrahim Sekagya. Silva read a miscommunication between the Ugandan center back and Robles, slotting the ball calmly past his marker for the opening goal.

Late-game substitute Eddie Johnson capped off the victory with stunning run, beating the Red Bulls trap and chipping Luis Robles for the final goal.

“We just weren’t able to do anything,” Petke lamented. “In the first half, we hit the post. Two open headers in the six. Two shots from inside the eighteen right to the goalie.

“I mean the first half, every through ball Espindola was offside, 90 percent of them. The line was perfect in the first half. Second half, we gave the goal up, it’s a matter of a dry field, and that’s a matter of perhaps not realizing that. The ball isn’t going to skip to the goalkeeper, it holds up and miscommunication and it’s a goal. You know, I was happy with the line for a lot of the game tonight. At the end of the day, it is lost opportunity, missed chances.”

New York have a rare break in action as they host Eastern Conference power Sporting K.C. at Red Bull Arena Saturday evening.

New York Red Bulls 0, D.C. United 2
August 31, 2014
MLS Regular Season
RFK Stadium – Washington D.C. 

Scoring Summary:

DC: Luis Silva 8 (Fabian Espindola 9, Bill Hamid 1) 57′

DC: Eddie Johnson 5 (Perry Kitchen 4) 91’+

Disciplinary Summary:



New York Red Bulls (7-8-10, 31 pts.): Luis Robles, Chris Duvall, Ibrahim Sekagya (Saer Sene 81′), Jamison Olave, Roy Miller, Lloyd Sam, Dax McCarty, Tim Cahill (Peguy Luyindula 90′), Ambroise Oyongo (Eric Alexander 63′) Thierry Henry, Bradley Wright-Phillips

Substitutes not used: Ryan Meara, Eric Stevenson, Armando, Richard Eckersley
D.C. United (14-8-4, 46 pts.): Bill Hamid, Sean Franklin, Bobby Boswell, Steve Birnbaum, Taylor Kemp, Chris Rolfe, Perry Kitchen, Davy Arnaud, Nick DeLeon (Alex Caskey 87′), Luis Silva (Eddie Johnson 66′), Fabian Espindola (Jared Jeffrey 85′)
Substitutes not used: Joe Willis, Lewis Neal, Nana Attakora, Kofi Opare


Referee: Jair Marrufo

Referee’s Assistants: Claudio Badea, Danny Thornberry

4th Official: Jose Carlos Rivero

Attendance: 19,453


  • Ugly mistakes cost us the game.
    What’s up with a 3pm game in August?

    • I’ll check to see if Chris Heck is in the MLS offices now.