Nov 6, 2016; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Gonzalo Veron (30) and New York Red Bulls midfielder Dax McCarty (11) celebrate after being awarded a penalty kick during the first half \A| at Red Bull Arena. Montreal won, 3-1. (Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports)
Nov 6, 2016; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Gonzalo Veron (30) and New York Red Bulls midfielder Dax McCarty (11) celebrate after being awarded a penalty kick during the first half \A| at Red Bull Arena. Montreal won, 3-1. (Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports)

In this edition of Penalty Shots, Once a Metro managing editor Austin Fido joins us for a discussion about the upcoming MLS offseason, RBNY's goals for 2017, and the Gonzalo Veron question.

Aaron Bauer: There are only two MLS Games left in 2016. Immediately after that, we enter the wacky, totally ridiculous part of MLS -- the offseason. There are three drafts this year, two of which could see the Red Bulls lose players. Of those two, the most important is obviously the expansion draft. MLS is seeing Atlanta and Minnesota United join this year, and each team will have the opportunity to pick 5 players from various MLS franchises. Teams will be able to protect all homegrown players and 11 players under contract. In theory there should be some MLS starters available for each team to stock up on. Now, the question begs: will the Red Bulls protect designated player Gonzalo Veron?

Veron joined the team midway through the 2015 season and has seen his ups and downs. When he is on the field he has shown his talent, but rarely does he get that opportunity. The "should Veron start," question has been debated at length, but is there a real risk that he could be taken by Atlanta or Minnesota? Both teams have open Designated Player spots, and Atlanta has an Argentinian manager in Tata Martino. Austin, should the Red Bulls protect Veron at the expense of other players?

Austin Fido: I think they should not. Over a season and a half, all I have seen is evidence that the team can't figure out where Veron fits in the lineup. It wanted to start 2016 with him at the center of a remodeled formation, but he got hurt and the team got into difficulties - and by the time he got fit again, there was a settled lineup that was more or less delivering the required results. It happens. There isn't room in the side for every player, even very good ones.

Looking ahead, the roster has Daniel Royer lined up as a senior attacking player who looks capable of playing either flank. It would be weird if the coaching staff backed away from Alex Muyl - whatever you or I might think of him, he's done what was asked of him and he's got a lot of room to grow as a player if he keeps getting opportunities. And the team also has Derrick Etienne and Junior Flemmings coming through, as well as incumbent starter Mike Grella.

So, for me, it's time to cut losses, admit it hasn't worked out with Gonzalo, and move on. Hang Veron out there in the Expansion Draft and see if anyone picks him up.

But that's what I think they should do. What I think they will do is protect him.

Aaron: I am of two minds. Part of me thinks that there is already a handshake deal with Atlanta over Chris Duvall, a Georgia native, so this whole exercise is moot. I would hope that deal, which is pure speculation, is Atlanta takes a player from another MLS franchise and we trade Duvall for that player. With that Atlanta doesn't take any players from the Red Bulls to consummate that deal. I think Minnesota has too much to assemble before adding a player like Veron as a complementary piece to their attack.

That being said, Tata Martino is the wild card here. Veron fits his plans for the Atlanta franchise, and he is a relatively cheap Designated Player. If the Red Bulls leave him unprotected, I think he's the second pick by Atlanta, after a starting goalkeeper. The fit makes too much sense.

There is also the question of Austria here. The Red Bulls paid a transfer fee to get Veron, they probably don't want to lose him for nothing. I could understand MLS roster mechanisms forcing their hand if they just want to cut ties, but paying a few million for a player only to see an expansion team claim him does not seem like something Austria wants. I want to see Veron work with this team, but you're right. Life will move on without him.

Austin: I sort of expect Duvall to be protected precisely because he's too good for Atlanta to pass up if he's in the Draft - assuming ATL doesn't already have a back line figured out. A deal to render the whole expansion grab-bag exercise (mostly) moot makes a lot of sense, and wouldn't be a surprise at all.

But if the Red Bulls arrive in the Expansion Draft with nothing already worked out, I just can't find a way to protect Veron without risking someone (Duvall, Grella, one of our CBs) who is of greater value to Jesse Marsch and who would leave a bigger hole to fill. Personally, I think Marsch's greatest failing is not finding room in his team for Veron to date. But that's me. I've never won a Shield and back-to-back Eastern Conference titles.

If they protect Veron, the front office is getting very close to telling Jesse to put him in the team next year, which seems to run against the general RalfBall philosophy. Ralf himself has spent significant money on players that didn't work out - he sent us one this season: Omer Damari.

But you raise a good point: letting Veron go, or even leaving him unprotected, will be admitting failure. And maybe the front office doesn't want to admit it made some poor choices with regard to signing a player the head coach didn't really know how to work with - and that is indeed why I expect them to protect him. But they should let him go. He's a good player. Let him go play for a team that wants what he has to give.

Aaron: For your last point, living in Atlanta, it would be nice to see Veron get consistent playing time for 17 games in person. I think he and Tata Martino could take over MLS, which some of our friends thought he would do with Jesse Marsch. If there is no handshake deal, Atlanta is all but certain to take Veron. I don't want to lose him for nothing. I hope they protect him.

This offseason is a mystery to me. Last year, the goal was to keep the team the same. They did, and well the results were predictably the same. I wonder if there is a worry of stagnation, and we could see Grella left unprotected to shake things up. I could see him being very useful in Minnesota, and I thank him for his two solid years of service for us. I'd like to see Royer get more playing time, and we have a quadruple burden this year. We are going to need some serious depth, Grella is replaceable, Veron is not, let's find out about Royer.

Speaking of which, I am still upset that we are doing this Desert Diamond Cup right during the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals. I don't know if this is a ploy to get NYRB II playing high-level preseason competition, or a sign that we are not taking the CCL as seriously as the quotes are to be believed. Frankly, I need to see what kind of players we sign this offseason to have any idea the direction this season is going to go. What is the goal? Besides winning two playoff series of course.

Austin: Quick point of information, just to get it into the discussion - if Veron has a no-trade clause in his contract, he's protected. And that's that. And maybe all the RBNY talk of sticking with him is precisely because they know he can't be traded on a whim and. ... well, he's not been given the chance to make himself attractive to other clubs anyway.

To your last question: I think the goal should always be to win a trophy. Yes, you want to win THE trophy. RBNY is in MLS. MLS teams try to win MLS Cup. Those are the rules that define the club's existence. But the every-season ambition has to be to win a trophy: Open Cup, MLS Cup, Supporters' Shield, or CCL. More than one, ideally. One at minimum.  

I'd be surprised if they plug it quite as ham-fistedly as they did last year, but I'm sure the broader strategic goal is more "sophistication." There is a lot more the team can be doing tactically, and I'm guessing they'll come up with a new plan for trying to add the variation they need to succeed. Over in Leipzig, Ralph Hasenhuttl has said his team has the ability to adapt tactically to almost any opponent. It is possible to play RalfBall and play intelligent, flexible soccer. Indeed, that is sort of the stated goal of the RB Soccer brains trust. So I think RBNY will work hard on developing greater fluidity and flexibility - they just might not say that's what they are doing quite so stridently this time around.


Apr 21, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls defender Michael Amir Murillo (62) fights for a header against Chicago Fire midfielder Aleksandar Katai (10) during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Apr 21, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls defender Michael Amir Murillo (62) fights for a header against Chicago Fire midfielder Aleksandar Katai (10) during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

HARRISON, N.J. (AP) Aleksandar Katai and Nemanja Nikolic scored and Richard Sanchez had a career-high nine saves to help the Chicago Fire beat the New York Red Bulls 2-1 on Saturday.

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Apr 14, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls defender Michael Murillo (62) celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal against Montreal Impact during second half at Red Bull Arena. New York Red Bulls defeated Montreal Impact 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Apr 14, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls defender Michael Murillo (62) celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal against Montreal Impact during second half at Red Bull Arena. New York Red Bulls defeated Montreal Impact 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

With or without fans in the stands, the New York Red Bulls are enjoying some home cooking at Red Bull Arena this year.

Traditionally, the club has been tough to beat in Harrison, N.J., where they are 84-20-30 since the building opened in 2010.

This season, though, they've amped up the intensity at home.

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Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) plays the ball against Montreal's Victor Cabrera during the first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) plays the ball against Montreal's Victor Cabrera during the first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Alejandro Romero-Gamarra scored in the 57th minute to break a tie and Michael Mrrillo added an insurance goal 19 minutes later as the New York Red Bulls defeated Montreal 2-1 in an MLS match Saturday at Red Bull Arena.

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Apr 10, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Aaron Long (33) chases the ball against Guadalajara during the first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Apr 10, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Aaron Long (33) chases the ball against Guadalajara during the first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

HARRISON, N.J. (AP) Chivas of Guadalajara advanced to the CONCACAF Champions League final, playing to a 0-0 tie at the New York Red Bulls on Tuesday night for a 1-0 aggregate victory.

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Mar 24, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Derrick Etienne (7) controls the ball against Minnesota United midfielder Ibson (7) during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Mar 24, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Derrick Etienne (7) controls the ball against Minnesota United midfielder Ibson (7) during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The bye week means different things for different Major League Soccer teams. For some, it's an unwanted break from a good rhythm.

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(AP)
(AP)

The New York Red Bulls lost to Chivas, 1-0, on Wednesday night in Estadio Akron in the first leg of their CONCACAF Champions League semifinal.

Chivas' Isaac Brizuela scored the match's lone goal in the 26th minute off an assist from Rodolfo Pizarro. Red Bulls goalie Luis Robles made two saves on the evening.

The Red Bulls were down to 10 men down the stretch after Aurelien Collin received his second yellow card in the 73rd minute. Collin and Alex Muyl each picked up a yellow card in the first half. 

The second leg between the Red Bulls and Chivas will be April 10 in Harrison, N.J.

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Mar 17, 2018; Sandy, UT, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Marc Rzatkowski (90) plays the ball against Real Salt Lake midfielder Demar Phillips (17) during the first half at Rio Tinto Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Gray-USA TODAY Sports (Rob Gray)
Mar 17, 2018; Sandy, UT, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Marc Rzatkowski (90) plays the ball against Real Salt Lake midfielder Demar Phillips (17) during the first half at Rio Tinto Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Gray-USA TODAY Sports (Rob Gray)

Saddled with a winless streak that dates back to last season, Orlando City SC is eager to come away with its first win of the year, and Sacha Kljestan wants to be a part of it.

Kljestan and the Lions play host to the New York Red Bulls on Saturday afternoon.

Orlando City (0-2-1) returns to the pitch for the first time since a 2-0 loss to New York City FC on March 17. The Lions are ninth in the Eastern Conference, ahead of only the Chicago Fire and defending MLS Cup champion and Supporters' Shield winner Toronto FC.

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Mar 24, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Derrick Etienne (7) controls the ball against Minnesota United midfielder Ibson (7) during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Mar 24, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Derrick Etienne (7) controls the ball against Minnesota United midfielder Ibson (7) during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

HARRISON, N.J. (AP) Bradley Wright-Phillips had two goals and Alex Muyl added another to help the New York Red Bulls beat Minnesota United 3-0 on Saturday night.

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Mar 10, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Ben Mines (17) controls the ball against Portland Timbers midfielder Diego Valeri (8) during the first half against the Portland Timbers at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Mar 10, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Ben Mines (17) controls the ball against Portland Timbers midfielder Diego Valeri (8) during the first half against the Portland Timbers at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

The start of the 2018 season for the New York Red Bulls has been practically perfect.

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Mar 17, 2018; Sandy, UT, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Marc Rzatkowski (90) plays the ball against Real Salt Lake midfielder Demar Phillips (17) during the first half at Rio Tinto Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Gray-USA TODAY Sports (Rob Gray)
Mar 17, 2018; Sandy, UT, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Marc Rzatkowski (90) plays the ball against Real Salt Lake midfielder Demar Phillips (17) during the first half at Rio Tinto Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Gray-USA TODAY Sports (Rob Gray)

SANDY, Utah (AP) Albert Rusnak scored on a penalty kick in the opening minutes and Nick Rimando had his MLS-leading 138th career shutout to help Real Salt Lake beat the New York Red Bulls 1-0 on Saturday night in the snow.

 

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Mar 1, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) battles Club Deportivo Olimpia midfielder Gerson Rodas (16) for the ball during first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Mar 1, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) battles Club Deportivo Olimpia midfielder Gerson Rodas (16) for the ball during first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Just two games into the season, Real Salt Lake is already scrambling to keep things from spiraling out of control on defense.

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Mar 10, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Ben Mines (17) controls the ball against Portland Timbers midfielder Diego Valeri (8) during the first half against the Portland Timbers at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Mar 10, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Ben Mines (17) controls the ball against Portland Timbers midfielder Diego Valeri (8) during the first half against the Portland Timbers at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

HARRISON, N.J. (AP) Carlos Rivas scored two goals and the New York Red Bulls opened their MLS season with a 4-0 win over the Portland Timbers on Saturday night.

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Mar 1, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Tyler Adams (4) and Club Deportivo Olimpia forward Carlos Costly (13) battle for the ball during second 
		 half at Red Bull Arena. 
		Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Mar 1, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Tyler Adams (4) and Club Deportivo Olimpia forward Carlos Costly (13) battle for the ball during second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

The 2018 Major League Soccer opener for Luis Robles feels a little strange.

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Mar 1, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) battles Club Deportivo Olimpia midfielder Gerson Rodas (16) for the ball during first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Mar 1, 2018; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) battles Club Deportivo Olimpia midfielder Gerson Rodas (16) for the ball during first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

The New York Red Bulls beat Olimpia 2-0 on Thursday night in Red Bull Arena to advance, 3-1, on aggregate in the CONCACAF Champions League.

Bradley Wright-Phillips scored the opening goal in the 54th minute and Sean Davis made it 2-0 for the Red Bulls 10 minutes later.

The Red Bulls will face Tijuana in the quarterfinals, with the first leg on March 6.

They open their MLS season at home against the Portland Timbers on March 10.

Tags: Bradley Wright Phillips, Sean Davis
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New York Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles throws the ball into play during first half play against Toronto in the Eastern Conference semifinal at BMO Field. (Dan Hamilton/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles throws the ball into play during first half play against Toronto in the Eastern Conference semifinal at BMO Field. (Dan Hamilton/USA TODAY Sports)

Toronto FC lost 1-0 to the New York Red Bulls in an abrasive game Sunday and still advanced to the MLS Eastern Conference final on away goals after the two-leg series ended tied 2-2 on goals aggregate.

It was a feisty affair that saw Toronto striker Jozy Altidore and Red Bulls captain Sacha Kljestan sent off after a tunnel melee at halftime.

League-leading Toronto will be without star striker Sebastian Giovinco for the next game after his second yellow in two games. TFC will play the Columbus Crew SC or New York City FC in the Conference final.

Tags: Bradley Wright Phillips, Toronto FC
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Oct 30, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls defender Kemar Lawrence (92) defends against Toronto FC forward Sebastian Giovinco (10) during second half in the Eastern Conference semifinal at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Oct 30, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls defender Kemar Lawrence (92) defends against Toronto FC forward Sebastian Giovinco (10) during second half in the Eastern Conference semifinal at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Toronto FC enters the second leg of its Eastern Conference semifinal trying not to take a spot in the finals for granted after a 2-1 away win in the first leg.

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Toronto FC midfielder Michael Bradley defends New York Red Bulls midfielder Daniel Royer in the Eastern Conference semifinal at Red Bull Arena. (Noah K. Murray/USA TODAY Sports)
Toronto FC midfielder Michael Bradley defends New York Red Bulls midfielder Daniel Royer in the Eastern Conference semifinal at Red Bull Arena. (Noah K. Murray/USA TODAY Sports)

Victor Vazquez and Sebastian Giovinco scored to help Toronto FC beat the New York Red Bulls 2-1 on Monday night in the opener of their Eastern Conference semifinal.

Giovinco drew a foul conceded by Felipe Martins just outside the box and then bent the free kick over a four-man wall to make it 2-1 in the 72nd minute.

The second of the two-game aggregate series is Sunday in Toronto. >> Read more

Copyright 2017 by The Associated Press

Tags: Toronto FC
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The New York Red Bulls huddle after their victory after an Eastern Conference knockout round soccer game against the Chicago Fire at Toyota Park. (Patrick Gorski/USA TODAY Sports)
The New York Red Bulls huddle after their victory after an Eastern Conference knockout round soccer game against the Chicago Fire at Toyota Park. (Patrick Gorski/USA TODAY Sports)

Toronto FC begins the MLS Cup playoffs as one of the favorites after a season in which it set a league record with 69 points.

In the Eastern Conference semifinals, Toronto face a New York Red Bulls team that knows how precarious that position can be.

The Red Bulls came into the playoffs as the top team in the East in 2015 and 2016, only to fail to reach the MLS Cup final in both seasons. >> Read more

Copyright 2017 by The Associated Press

Tags: Toronto FC
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New York Red Bulls midfielder Sacha Kljestan (16) reacts after scoring a goal against the Chicago Fire during the first half at Toyota Park. (Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Red Bulls midfielder Sacha Kljestan (16) reacts after scoring a goal against the Chicago Fire during the first half at Toyota Park. (Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports)

BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. (AP) Bradley Wright-Phillips and Sacha Kljestan scored four minutes apart early in the first half, and the New York Red Bulls cruised by the Chicago Fire 4-0 on Wednesday night in a knockout-round game.

New York (15-12-8), in its eighth straight playoffs, advanced to the Eastern Conference semifinals against Supporters Shield winner Toronto FC.

Tags: Chicago Fire
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New York Red Bulls midfielder Alex Muyl controls the ball as D.C. United forward Paul Arriola looks on during the first half at Robert F. Kennedy Memorial. (Brad Mills/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Red Bulls midfielder Alex Muyl controls the ball as D.C. United forward Paul Arriola looks on during the first half at Robert F. Kennedy Memorial. (Brad Mills/USA TODAY Sports)

Gonzalo Veron and Michael Murillo scored minutes apart and the New York Red Bulls beat rival D.C. United 2-1 on Sunday for the Atlantic Cup in the final MLS game at RFK Stadium.

United is set to play home games next season at the new Audi Field, located three miles southwest of RFK.

New York (14-12-8), which last won at RFK in 2013, will be the No. 6 seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs and play at third-seeded Chicago in the Knockout round. >> Read more

Copyright 2017 by The Associated Press

Tags: D.C. United
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Sep 23, 2017; Washington, DC, USA; View of sign showing one game left at RFK stadium for the D.C. United during the second half at Robert F. Kennedy Memorial. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Mills)
Sep 23, 2017; Washington, DC, USA; View of sign showing one game left at RFK stadium for the D.C. United during the second half at Robert F. Kennedy Memorial. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Mills)

D.C. United bids farewell to the focal point of a world of soccer memories in the United States as it plays at RFK Stadium for the final time against the New York Red Bulls on Sunday.

 

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Atlanta United goalkeeper Brad Guzan and defender Leandro Gonzalez defend against a direct kick by the New York Red Bulls during first half at Red Bull Arena. (Noah K. Murray/USA Today Sports Images)
Atlanta United goalkeeper Brad Guzan and defender Leandro Gonzalez defend against a direct kick by the New York Red Bulls during first half at Red Bull Arena. (Noah K. Murray/USA Today Sports Images)

Brad Guzan and Luis Robles each made three saves, and Atlanta United and the New York Red Bulls, both playoff bound, battled to a 3-3 draw on Sunday. >> Read more

Copyright 2017 by The Associated Press

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Sep 17, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Tyler Adams (4) races for the ball against Philadelphia Union forward C.J. Sapong (17) during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Sep 17, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Tyler Adams (4) races for the ball against Philadelphia Union forward C.J. Sapong (17) during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

Atlanta United take aim at the No. 2 overall seed in the Eastern Conference when the surprising expansion franchise hits the road to take on the New York Red Bulls, who also are headed to the MLS Cup Playoffs.

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Oct 7, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Daniel Royer (77) celebrates his goal against the Vancouver Whitecaps with forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) during the first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Oct 7, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Daniel Royer (77) celebrates his goal against the Vancouver Whitecaps with forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) during the first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

HARRISON, N.J. (AP) Daniel Royer, Bradley Wright-Phillips and Felipe scored and the New York Red Bulls clinched the final Eastern Conference playoff spot with a 3-0 victory over the Vancouver Whitecaps on Saturday night.

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New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) yells at a teammate during the at half at an MLS game against the Toronto FC at BMO Field. (Kevin Sousa-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) yells at a teammate during the at half at an MLS game against the Toronto FC at BMO Field. (Kevin Sousa-USA TODAY Sports)

The Vancouver Whitecaps hope they can become the next Canadian team to make history with help from the New York Red Bulls.

The Whitecaps (15-10-6) aim to clinch the top spot in Major League Soccer's Western Conference for the first time on Saturday as they visit the Red Bulls (12-12-7), who are fighting for a playoff berth.

Tags: Vancouver Whitecaps FC
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Sep 30, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto FC midfielder Michael Bradley (4) battles for the ball against New York Red Bulls midfielder Daniel Royer (77) during the second half at BMO Field. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Sousa-USA TODAY Sports (Kevin Sousa)
Sep 30, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto FC midfielder Michael Bradley (4) battles for the ball against New York Red Bulls midfielder Daniel Royer (77) during the second half at BMO Field. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Sousa-USA TODAY Sports (Kevin Sousa)

ORONTO (AP) -- Victor Vazquez broke a tie in the 80th minute on a penalty kick and Toronto FC became the first Canadian team to win the Supporters' Shield as the MLS regular-season champion, beating the New York Red Bulls 4-2 on Saturday night.

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Sep 17, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Tyler Adams (4) races for the ball against Philadelphia Union forward C.J. Sapong (17) during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Sep 17, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Tyler Adams (4) races for the ball against Philadelphia Union forward C.J. Sapong (17) during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

Despite suffering consecutive losses for the first time this season, Toronto FC can wrap the Supporters' Shield and the top seed in the Eastern Conference playoff bracket on Saturday with a home win against the struggling New York Red Bulls.

Toronto has enjoyed the full week to regroup from losses to New England and Montreal, the two teams chasing the Red Bulls for the conference's sixth and final playoff spot. 

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Sep 27, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Tyler Adams (4) reacts after scoring a goal against D.C. United during first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Sep 27, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Tyler Adams (4) reacts after scoring a goal against D.C. United during first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

HARRISON, N.J. (AP) Fidel Escobar's own goal in second-half stoppage time lifted last-place D.C. United to a 3-3 draw with the New York Red Bulls on Wednesday night.

United (9-17-5) avoided elimination from playoff contention. New York (12-11-7) had its winless streak extended to seven games.

New York took a 3-2 lead in the 78th after scoring twice in a four-minute span. Tyler Adams sent a loose ball through the legs of two players into the net and Gonzalo Veron scored on a penalty kick.

Tags: D.C. United
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New York Red Bulls midfielder Sacha Kljestan (16) passes the ball during the match against Sporting Kansas City at Children's Mercy Park. (Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Red Bulls midfielder Sacha Kljestan (16) passes the ball during the match against Sporting Kansas City at Children's Mercy Park. (Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports)

As big as the New York Red Bulls' long-running rivalry with D.C. United may be, they would take any win against any team right now just to get back on the path to the postseason.

New York (12-11-6, 42 points) has not won in its last six matches (two losses, four draws), falling from fourth place to sixth in the process. Slide any further down the Eastern Conference standings and the Red Bulls would be beneath the playoff line and in danger of a first season without a postseason berth since 2009.

Tags: D.C. United
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Sep 23, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; Columbus Crew SC forward Federico Higuain (10) and New York Red Bulls defender Fidel Escobar (29) battle for the ball at MAPFRE Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports (Greg Bartram)
Sep 23, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; Columbus Crew SC forward Federico Higuain (10) and New York Red Bulls defender Fidel Escobar (29) battle for the ball at MAPFRE Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports (Greg Bartram)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) Federico Higuain had three assists and the Columbus Crew extended their unbeaten streak to seven games with a 3-2 win over the New York Red Bulls on Saturday night.

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 (Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports)
(Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports)

The Red Bulls' U.S. Open Cup title chances slipped away as Sporting KC walked away with a 2-1 victory in the final game on Wednesday night.

Off a pass from Graham ZusiLatif Blessing netted Sporting KC's first goal in the middle of the box in the 25th minute of the contest. KC added a second goal in the 75th minute off the foot of Dániel Sallói.

Tags: Sporting Kansas City
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Sep 17, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Tyler Adams (4) races for the ball against Philadelphia Union forward C.J. Sapong (17) during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Sep 17, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Tyler Adams (4) races for the ball against Philadelphia Union forward C.J. Sapong (17) during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

HARRISON, N.J. (AP) Andre Blake made eight saves for Philadelphia and the Union and the New York Red Bulls played to a scoreless draw Sunday.

Philadelphia (8-12-9) and New York (12-10-6) are both winless in five straight games.

 

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Sep 9, 2017; Chicago, IL, USA; New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) kicks the ball away from the goal against the Chicago Fire during the second half at Toyota Park. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports (Mike Dinovo)
Sep 9, 2017; Chicago, IL, USA; New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) kicks the ball away from the goal against the Chicago Fire during the second half at Toyota Park. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports (Mike Dinovo)

The New York Red Bulls will look to build momentum for their approaching U.S. Open Cup Final when they host the Philadelphia Union on Sunday afternoon.

After winning four times in the league in July, coach Jesse Marsch's Red Bulls (12-10-5, 41 points) have only one victory in their last six matches. They entered the weekend still in sixth place, five points ahead of Montreal and above the playoff line after three consecutive draws.

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Jul 13, 2017; Boston, MA, USA; New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) plays the ball in front of New England Revolution defender Antonio Delamea Mlinar (19) during the second half of the New York Red Bulls 1-0 win over the New England Revolution at Jordan Field. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports (Winslow Townson)
Jul 13, 2017; Boston, MA, USA; New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) plays the ball in front of New England Revolution defender Antonio Delamea Mlinar (19) during the second half of the New York Red Bulls 1-0 win over the New England Revolution at Jordan Field. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports (Winslow Townson)

Nemanja Nikolic tied it in the 66th minute and the Chicago Fire held on for a 1-1 draw with the New York Red Bulls on Saturday.

Michael de Leeuw squared Johan Kappelhof's deep ball with a flick pass across the top of the 6-yard box and Nikolic connected with a header down into the middle of the net for the Fire (13-9-6).

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Sep 2, 2017; Dallas, TX, USA; FC Dallas defender Walker Zimmerman (25) battles for the ball with New York Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles (31) during the second half at Toyota Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports  (Kevin Jairaj)
Sep 2, 2017; Dallas, TX, USA; FC Dallas defender Walker Zimmerman (25) battles for the ball with New York Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles (31) during the second half at Toyota Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports (Kevin Jairaj)

FRISCO, Texas (AP) Mauro Diaz scored on a penalty kick in the 75th minute and 10-man FC Dallas salvaged a 2-2 draw with the New York Red Bulls on Saturday night.

Luis Robles guessed the right direction, but Diaz powered it past with enough height to stay out of the goalkeeper's reach.

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 (Winslow Townson)
(Winslow Townson)

The Red Bulls couldn't secure a victory as they played New York City FC to a draw in the NY Derby, 1-1, at Red Bull Arena Friday night. 

The visiting NYCFC got on the scoreboard first as David Villa found Maxi Moralez in the box to score in the 56th minute. It was Moralez's fourth goal of the year. 

However, the Red Bulls would tie things up after Sacha Kljestan earned a penalty kick in the 70th minute. Gonzalo Veron would convert the shot to tie the game up. 

Tags: Gonzalo Veron
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Aug 12, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Sean Davis (27) celebrates with teammates as Orlando City SC midfielder Kaka (10) looks away during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Aug 12, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Sean Davis (27) celebrates with teammates as Orlando City SC midfielder Kaka (10) looks away during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

HARRISON, N.J. (AP) Sean Davis assisted on the go-ahead goal and added an insurance goal in the 80th minute to lift the New York Red Bulls to a contentious 3-1 win over Orlando City on Saturday night.

There were four yellow cards and Orlando's Kaka was given a red card in the seventh minute of stoppage time.

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General view of Red Bull Arena prior to the match between the New York Red Bulls and the Orlando City FC. (Vincent Carchietta)
General view of Red Bull Arena prior to the match between the New York Red Bulls and the Orlando City FC. (Vincent Carchietta)

The New York Red Bulls will attempt to bounce back from a deflating loss to their rivals on Saturday when they host new-look Orlando City SC at Red Bull Arena.

New York rallied from a 1-0 deficit with two goals to take the lead over New York City FC on Sunday, only to give up a pair of goals to David Villa and leave Yankee Stadium empty handed. The 3-2 loss snapped the four-game winning streak of the Red Bulls (11-9-2).

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New York Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles secures the ball against the New York City FC during the first half at Yankee Stadium. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles secures the ball against the New York City FC during the first half at Yankee Stadium. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)

David Villa had his first MLS hat trick to help New York City FC beat the New York Red Bulls 3-2 on Sunday night.

Villa's third goal gave New York City (12-7-4) the lead for good in the 75th minute. He drew a foul in the area when Sal Zizzo was shown a yellow card for a high boot and then converted from the spot.

Villa opened the scoring in the 28th, beating a charging Luis Robles 1-on-1 and tapping a left-footer into the open net.

Bradley Wright-Phillips took a pass Sean Davis cut left and scored from top of the box in 41st minute and rolled in a perfectly placed cross from Tyler Adams from just outside the 6-yard box to give the Red Bulls (11-9-2) a 2-1 lead in the 64th.

Tags: Bradley Wright Phillips, David Villa, Luis Robles
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Jun 24, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York City FC midfielder Jack Harrison (11) plays the ball against New York Red Bulls midfielder Daniel Royer (77) during the first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (USA Today)
Jun 24, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York City FC midfielder Jack Harrison (11) plays the ball against New York Red Bulls midfielder Daniel Royer (77) during the first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (USA Today)

The last time New York City FC faced its closest rivals, coach Patrick Vieira said his squad delivered a near-perfect performance in a 2-0 road win over the New York Red Bulls on June 24.

NYCFC (11-7-4) may need a repeat performance Sunday if it is to slow down the streaking Red Bulls.

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Jul 29, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Derrick Etienne (7) celebrates after his goal against the Montreal Impact during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Jul 29, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Derrick Etienne (7) celebrates after his goal against the Montreal Impact during the second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

HARRISON, N.J. (AP) Daniel Royer had two goals, Michael Murillo had his first MLS goal and the New York Red Bulls beat the Montreal Impact 4-0 on Saturday night.

Royer has six goals in his last four games.

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Jul 22, 2017; Minneapolis, MN, USA; New York Red Bulls celebrates after the game against the Minnesota United at TCF Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Rempel)
Jul 22, 2017; Minneapolis, MN, USA; New York Red Bulls celebrates after the game against the Minnesota United at TCF Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Rempel)

The New York Red Bulls struggled out of the gate this season, but seemed to have found their stride in July.

The Red Bulls have won three straight MLS matches and five consecutive games overall. They'll look to keep the momentum going when the struggling Montreal Impact visit Red Bull Arena on Saturday night.

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Jul 22, 2017; Minneapolis, MN, USA; New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) shoots in the second half against the Minnesota United midfielder Ibson (7) at TCF Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Rempel)
Jul 22, 2017; Minneapolis, MN, USA; New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) shoots in the second half against the Minnesota United midfielder Ibson (7) at TCF Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Rempel)

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Daniel Royer had a goal and an assist and the New York Red Bulls beat Minnesota United 3-0 on Saturday.

New York (10-8-2) has won three consecutive road matches for the first time since 2013 and three in a row overall.

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Jul 19, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Sacha Kljestan (16) celebrates with midfielder Gonzalo Veron (30) and midfielder Sean Davis (27) after scoring a goal against San Jose Earthquakes goalkeeper David Bingham (1) during second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Jul 19, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Sacha Kljestan (16) celebrates with midfielder Gonzalo Veron (30) and midfielder Sean Davis (27) after scoring a goal against San Jose Earthquakes goalkeeper David Bingham (1) during second half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

HARRISON, N.J. (AP) Daniel Royer scored twice in a minute span late in the New York Red Bulls' 5-1 victory over the San Jose Earthquakes on Wednesday night.

Royer scored in the 90th and 91st minutes. He has seven goals this season.

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Jul 13, 2017; Boston, MA, USA; New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) plays the ball in front of New England Revolution defender Antonio Delamea Mlinar (19) during the second half of the New York Red Bulls 1-0 win over the New England Revolution at Jordan Field. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports (Winslow Townson)
Jul 13, 2017; Boston, MA, USA; New York Red Bulls forward Bradley Wright-Phillips (99) plays the ball in front of New England Revolution defender Antonio Delamea Mlinar (19) during the second half of the New York Red Bulls 1-0 win over the New England Revolution at Jordan Field. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports (Winslow Townson)

Two original MLS teams clash when the San Jose Earthquakes visit the New York Red Bulls in Harrison, N.J., on Wednesday.

The two sides were part of the 10 original MLS clubs from the league's inaugural 1996 season when they were called the San Jose Clash and New York/New Jersey MetroStars.

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New York Red Bulls midfielder Gonzalo Veron (30) celebrates his winning goal during the second half of their 3-2 win over the New England Revolution at Gillette Stadium. (Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Red Bulls midfielder Gonzalo Veron (30) celebrates his winning goal during the second half of their 3-2 win over the New England Revolution at Gillette Stadium. (Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports)

Gonzalo Veron scored in the 90th minute to give the New York Red Bulls a 3-2 victory over the New England Revolution on Wednesday night in the I-95 rivalry.

New York (8-8-2) is the first away team in the series to win since June 8, 2014. New England (5-9-5) lost its fourth consecutive game.

Tags: New England Revolution
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Jun 28, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Salvatore Zizzo (15) reacts after making a penalty kick against Philadelphia Union at Red Bull Arena. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)
Jun 28, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York Red Bulls midfielder Salvatore Zizzo (15) reacts after making a penalty kick against Philadelphia Union at Red Bull Arena. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)

If the New England Revolution are going to make a move out of 10th place in the Eastern Conference standings, now is the time.

The Revolution, who have lost three consecutive MLS games, play three straight at home, beginning Wednesday when the New York Red Bulls visit Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass.

Tags: New England Revolution
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Jun 24, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York City FC midfielder Jack Harrison (11) plays the ball against New York Red Bulls midfielder Daniel Royer (77) during the first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (USA Today)
Jun 24, 2017; Harrison, NJ, USA; New York City FC midfielder Jack Harrison (11) plays the ball against New York Red Bulls midfielder Daniel Royer (77) during the first half at Red Bull Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (USA Today)

NYCFC won for the first-time ever at Red Bull Arena in a 2-0 victory over the Red Bulls in the first edition of the Hudson River Derby of 2017.

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Bradley Wright-Phillips scored in the 87th minute against the Philadelphia Union on Sunday.  (Julio Cortez/AP)
Bradley Wright-Phillips scored in the 87th minute against the Philadelphia Union on Sunday. (Julio Cortez/AP)

Bradley Wright-Phillips scored twice in the final minutes against the Philadelphia Union on Sunday, giving the Red Bulls a 2-0 win.

Elsewhere, Jacob deGrom homers, the Yankees drop their sixth straight, Eric Decker is now a Titan and the Rangers, Islanders and Devils announce their protected players list ahead of the NHL Expansion Draft. 

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