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Hudson River Derby slips away from Red Bulls after painful loss

Days after claiming the Atlantic Cup against D.C United, the New York Red Bulls fell short in the Hudson River Derby against New York City FC. The 2-1 defeat closed the club’s long week as they head into the break.

It was a classic Hudson River Derby match with plenty of shots, fouls, and cards. NYCFC wasted no time and got on the board first with a goal in the third minute. Forward Hannes Wolf was given a perfect pass inside the box and found the back of the net.

Head Coach Sandro Schwarz spoke on the result of the match.

“We are very disappointed about the result,” Schwarz said. “The beginning New York City was better. We needed some minutes to get our moments and at our moments and our transitions, we were not clean enough… Very disappointed in the result. The fighting spirit was top and we gave everything but it was not good enough today to change the result.”

NYCFC dominated the rest of the half in possession, but the Red Bulls had no shortage of chances. The club was able to play through balls into the box and create chances but could not find the back of the net until just before the end of the half.

In added time of the 45th minute, Cameron Harper found the ball off of a turnover and rocketed the ball towards the net, which went bar down to level the game. This was Harper's third goal in the Red Bulls' last three matches. Number 17 also started the previous two matches and has improved greatly compared to the start of the season.

“He’s been playing great,” midfielder Daniel Edelman said. “It’s been lovely to see Cam, definitely one of my closest mates and he’s stepped up. He’s been ready for his moment when he’s got the opportunity and he took it again today. He’s a massive piece for us and I’m looking forward to what he keeps bringing the team.”

NYCFC continued to play better ball in the second half, keeping most of the possession and winning more of the 50/50 battles. The Red Bulls started to get a little foul-happy, committing 14 fouls, including five yellow cards and even a red, which was given to defender Sean Nealis (double yellow).

NYCFC scored their second goal and the winner in the 64th minute after Mounsef Bakrar was fed a pass directly in front of Carlos Coronel for an easy tap-in.

This was the 28th Hudson River Derby and Scwharz’s first derby. While NYCFC typically plays at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, NY, the match was played at Citi Field in Queens, NY, as the club promoted their new arena that will open up next to the baseball stadium.

“It’s good to have a derby here with both teams very close,” Schwarz said. “It’s a special atmosphere, to be honest, it’s my first experience to play in a baseball stadium but it was good to have these emotions and this derby.”

After playing in three matches over the past seven days, the Red Bulls go into a break with no matches scheduled until May 29th, which will be back home against Charlotte FC. The club looks to take advantage of this break to rest and regroup following the loss. Earning six out of a possible nine points across the three matches is something any team would take at any point in the season.

“I think it’s important to have these days off and to come down and not only to relax but to get fresh legs,” Schwarz said.”

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