New York City FC traveled to New Jersey to take on the Red Bulls in the first leg of the 2019 Hudson River Derby series.
As the team looked to bring the three points home to the Big Apple, Dome Torrent made a few changes to the XI. Torrent welcomed back his starters from international duty with Sean Johnson back in net and Alex Callens back in the defensive line.
Keaton Parks, Anton Tinnerholm, and Taty Castellanos also made their returns to the starters group after coming off the bench in the U.S. Open Cup shootout defeat at Orlando on Wednesday.
Although in enemy territory, the Boys in Blue made their presence felt early as their offensive efforts helped City secure the lead in the 7th minute.
Maxi Moralez received it from Keaton Parks, before connecting with Tinnerholm who produced a brilliant first-time cross to Héber who found the underside of the crossbar and the back of the net.
Meanwhile, on the other end of the pitch, Johnson’s long-awaited return to net yielded the same results we’ve come to expect. The Red Bulls got a header off Brian White, but the big man cleared it on a huge left-handed save.
City regained their dominance at Red Bull Arena, as Moralez found Parks in the box to double the lead, but unfortunately, Luis Robles was able to make the save from Keaton.
Dome Torrent's men had enjoyed the best of the first half but before the halftime whistle blew, the Red Bulls were awarded a penalty kick after White went down in the box on a foul from Chanot.
With no VAR called for, Daniel Royer scored the penalty, tying the game up 1-1.
It became 2-1 in the 60th minute as Royer benefited from a controversial moment in the match to score his second goal of the encounter.
The goal came directly from a quickly-taken throw-in after the assistant referee had appeared to signal for a corner kick.
Chasing the equalizer, Gary Mackay-Steven made his debut in City blue and it was the Scot who created NYC's best chance of an equalizer.
Mackay-Steven found Héber on the edge of the box and the Brazilian tried to curl the ball into the net, but his attempt was just over the top.
Unfortunately, the equalizer never came and NYCFC fell to the Red Bulls 2-1, in their first meeting this season.
Bring on August 24.
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