Home MLS Montreal Impact 10-man Red Bulls hand Impact its first MLS loss at home

10-man Red Bulls hand Impact its first MLS loss at home

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The last time the Impact and Red Bulls met, the outcome was a 5-2 New York victory that was a lot closer than the score might have indicated. Saturday’s match also ended with a Red Bulls victory, this time a 2-1 triumph that had some of the 20,373 vocally registering their displeasure at the Impact’s inability to get the desired result, even after seeing the New York side play with 10 men for the final half hour of the game.

“It’s an incredibly disappointing and frustrating game because we just let this one slip away but in a lot of ways our ideas and our attempts were not bad,” said coach Jesse Marsch. “Part of it is maybe it’s a night when it’s just not our night. Part of it is still not understanding how to handle a lead, how to deal with that game and how to have a bit more urgency when we get a lead. It’s just incredibly disappointing.”

Uneventful except for a goal a side, both coming off penalty kicks, the opening 45 minutes were controlled by the Impact who held possession longer, made more and better passes and won the majority of the battles for the ball.

Montreal got its chances early in the game. Midfielder Felipe shot wide to the right of the New York net defended by Ryan Meara in the ninth minute. Sanna Nyassi had two opportunities but only one led to a scoring chance. The speedy Impact forward forced the Meara to go airborne to deflect his drive off the net in the 14th and was unable to get a foot on a Davy Arnaud ball served through the box in the 19th.

The Impact’s goal, off the foot of Bernardo Corradi, came in the 22nd minute after Markus Holgersson was called for a hand ball in the penalty area.

Fifteen minutes later, the Red Bulls got the goal back, also on a penalty kick, this one the result of a Tyson Wahl hand ball in the costly part of the pitch. Kenny Cooper, expertly marked by the Montreal central defenders throughout the match, took the lead among Red Bull scorers and pulled to within one goal of the league leader, Chris Wondolowski, with his 10th of the present campaign, propelling the ball to the left of Donovan Ricketts.

Miguel Montano, starting his first game of the year for Montreal, had multiple chances in the second half, stripping a visitor of the ball in the 54th minute and rolling his shot by the left post and, in the 62nd, heading the ball to the other side of Meara’s net.

The young forward’s performance was noted by his coach in his post-game comments. “He brings some soccer and some quality around the goal. He’s a little clever and he was close to making a couple plays tonight. In training recently he’s shown that those kinds of plays go in for him,” said Marsch. “That’s why he was on the field. It didn’t go in for him tonight but I think he’ll find more chances this season and get some goals. I think he did pretty well.”

New York midfielder Victor Palsson, shown a yellow card a mere four minutes after the start of play, reoffended in the 58th ,leaving his team a man down for the balance of the game.

Montreal came on immediately with Felipe putting it to the wrong side of the left post in the 63rd, Corradi having his try blocked by Meara a minute later and Nelson Rivas sending a free kick wide and to the left in the 66th.

Forward Dane Richards found the ball at his feet in the 67th minute and gave his side the go-ahead goal, bouncing the ball off the underside of the crossbar as it found the mesh behind Ricketts.

New York had other chances to stretch its lead, but was not able to capitalize on a 79th-minute Joel Lindpere shot.

Montreal’s Nyassi had the last chance of the game, his low, closing minute shot handled by Meara.

Impact captain Arnaud pronounced himself dissatisfied with the evening’s result, if not with his teammates’ efforts. “It’s very disappointing for us. When they went down a man I think we did well. We got a few chances, actually hit the post and had a couple other good looks,” he said. “You can’t really put your finger on it. They get one break and they score and a goal didn’t come for us. We know that at the end of the game we should come out with a win, especially in this situation, and definitely not lose the game.

“We’ve said all year that it’s important to be good at home and be picking up points at home. You certainly don’t ever want to lose at home,” he continued. “We’ll regroup. These things are going to happen every once in a while but our response has to be good.”

THROW-INS – Montreal midfielder Sinisa Ubiparipovic made 69 appearances in New York colors between 2007 and 2010, scoring twice and assisting on five other goals in that time.

• Goalkeeper Greg Sutton began the 2011 season on the Red Bulls roster, posting a 3-2-5 record before coming to Montreal at around mid-season.

• The Impact and Red Bulls began this evening’s competition even in the goals allowed column with both sides having allowed 16 goals in the 11 games they have played thus far.

• Montreal’s next home game, June 16 against the Seattle Sounders, will be presented at the newly expanded Saputo Stadium which has increased its capacity from 13,034 to 20,340 spectators.

• Impact keeper Donovan Ricketts and midfielder Felipe are the only Montreal players to have spent all 1,080 minutes the team has played on the pitch. On the Red Bull side of things, goalkeeper Ryan Meara has yet to watch from the sidelines this season.

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