Harrison, N.J. (May 19, 2019)- In an Eastern Conference final rematch, the New York Red Bulls hosted Atlanta United. The Red Bulls have never allowed Atlanta United to score at Red Bull Arena. While Atlanta has found their footing with their new manager Frank de Boer, RBNY has had an inconsistent form of late.
A Chippy Start
Both sides attempted to take hold of the game from the opening whistle. Just three minutes into the first half, Marc Rzatkowski’s shot hit the crossbar. High physicality marked the first fifteen minutes. A shot from Andreas Ivan went straight to Atlanta goalkeeper Brad Guzan. Atlanta United captain Michael Parkhurst made a low shot at the top of the 18-yard box. Luis Robles, who did not go out against FC Dallas, grabbed the ball. From then on, the pace settled, but the fouls continued for a total of thirteen in the first half alone. Atlanta striker Josef Martinez made a breakaway run in the 28th minute, but defender Amro Tarek stopped the attack.
First Half Sendoff
When Martinez made another run on goal, he was brought down by defender Tim Parker. The defender was sent off in the 36th minute of the match for denial of a goal scoring opportunity. Until then, Parker had led the RBNY defense without his usual counterpart, Aaron Long. Rookie Sean Nealis replaced an injured Andreas Ivan to shore up the defense. The sides were able to hold on for the remainder of the first half.
Barlow’s First MLS Goal
In the second half, RBNY manager Chris Armas went for fresh legs in the attack, bringing in Tom Barlow for Brian White. Overall, New York reined in their attack, allowing their high press style to do the work. This created the chance for the newest first-team forward Tom Barlow to open his MLS account in the 65th minute. His header from Daniel Royer’s cross bounded past Guzan and into the lower corner of the net. This is the first score on Atlanta in six MLS matches. RBNY held on for the rest of the match to eke out a win and defend their fortress.
The Red Bulls remain at home to welcome the Vancouver Whitecaps, while Atlanta United travel to face Real Salt Lake.
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