New York Red Bulls Edge Toronto FC in Defensive Battle

By Mike McCaw
Mike McCaw
Mike McCaw
August 11, 2010 Updated: October 1, 2015
Julian de Guzman (R) of Toronto FC and Seth Stammler (L) of the New York Red Bulls battle at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey. (Stan Honda/AFP/Getty Images)
Julian de Guzman (R) of Toronto FC and Seth Stammler (L) of the New York Red Bulls battle at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey. (Stan Honda/AFP/Getty Images)
The New York Red Bulls edged Toronto FC 1–0 at Red Bull Arena Wednesday night, to solidify their second-place standing in the Eastern Conference.

In the opening 10 minutes, Toronto FC came out very strong creating quality chances and maintaining possession. In the third minute Toronto was able to put a solid shot on goal that challenged goalie Greg Sutton.

Sutton played in place of starting goalie Bouna Coundoul. Coundoul and two other Red Bulls (Rafael Marquez and Dane Richards) were out on international duty. “A little bit frustrating,” coach Hans Backe put it when asked about their time away.

As the Red Bulls gained more organization, the play slowly evened out. In the 21st minute Thierry Henry was on a break and had Toronto goalie Stefan Frei beat, but was tripped up by the keeper.

Henry maintained composure after not getting the call from the referee, and seconds later his patience paid off as he assisted Joel Lindpere on the only goal of the night. The goal’s primary creator, though, was midfielder Seth Stammler with a short flick inside the box.

The defenses played well on both sides of the field. “They look very strong defensively [Toronto]. They have players that can make a difference,” said Backe before the game about his opponents.

Defender Carlos Mendes had a strong showing shutting down Toronto superstar Dwayne De Rosario. On one play in the 40th minute, it looked as though De Rosario had a clean shot on goal with no one around until Mendes slid in for the block. At the end of the game De Rosario shoved Mendes repeatedly out of frustration.

The Red Bulls were able to walk away victorious in Thierry Henry’s MLS home debut and solidify their second place standing in the Eastern Conference, putting them five points ahead of Toronto.

Henry now has three assists in three games for the Red Bulls. When the Red Bulls lead after the first half they go on to win; they are now 5–0 when going into the second half on top.

The Red Bulls are happy to put a win under their belts having draws in four out of the last five games. They now lead the all time record with Toronto 5–4–1.

Next up for the Red Bulls is the L.A. Galaxy led by the United States national team top all-time scorer Landon Donovan. This game is sold out and will take place in Harrison, New Jersey, at Red Bull Arena on Saturday night.

Mike McCaw