The New England Revolution tied the New York Red Bulls 2-2 at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, NJ, Saturday night.
The draw was New England’s (11-11-9, 42 pts.) first-ever point at Red Bull Arena, while the league-leading Red Bulls (15-9-8, 53 pts.) became the first team in MLS to clinch a spot in the MLS Cup Playoffs.
In the 15th minute, fireball Fabian Espindola gave the Red Bulls a 1-0 lead with a right-footed shot inside the near post past veteran Matt Reis. New York maintained that lead into the second half, but in the 83rd minute Jamison Olave was sanctioned for a hand-to-ball offense and Lee Nguyen stepped up and buried his penalty to equalize 1-1.
Andy Dorman’s was ejected in the 86th minute - his second red card of the season - for a midfield tackle on Eric Alexander, limiting the Revs to 10 men, but 18 year-old Diego Fagundez stepped up in the first minute of stoppage time and put New England ahead 2-1. It was scored Fagundez's 12th goal of the season and he is now ranked fifth in MLS in goals scored. Diego Fagundez’s 12 goals are the Revolution’s highest single-season total since Taylor Twellman scored 16 in 2007.
But then Referee Fotis Bazakos whistled Farrell off the field for apparent blood on his face, leaving the Revs facing a set-piece situation with only nine men on the field. The Red Bulls Tim Cahill headed in the game-tying goal in the 97th minute for the final 2-2 result.
"I can’t live with you [the referee, Fotis Bazakos] taking our guys off the field on the last play of the game," said head coach Jay Heaps. "Go back and look, show me tape on when in the world when you’ve already got a red card you take another guy off. It’s impossible."
The Revolution returns to action on Saturday, Oct. 12, when the team travels to Quebec to face the Montreal Impact at Stade Saputo. Kickoff is set for 2:30 p.m. ET, and the match will be broadcast live on TV by Comcast SportsNet.
NYRB – Fabian Espindola (unassisted) 15
NE – Lee Nuyen (penalty kick) 85
NE – Diego Fagundez (unassisted) 91+
NYRB – Tim Cahill (unassisted) 97+
New England Revolution: Matt Reis, Chris Tierney, Jose Goncalves ©, A.J. Soares (Dimitry Imbongo 76), Andrew Farrell, Diego Fagundez, Lee Nguyen, Scott Caldwell (Andy Dorman 56), Kelyn Rowe, Saer Sene, Juan Agudelo (Jerry Bengtson 79)
Substitutes Not Used: Bobby Shuttleworth, Chad Barrett, Stephen McCarthy, Kevin Alston
STATS: Shots 15, Shots on Target 7, Corner Kicks 6, Saves 3, Fouls 10, Offsides 1, Passes 374 (79.9%), Possession 50.4%
New York Red Bulls: Luis Robles, David Carney, Jamison Olave, Markus Holgersson, Kosuke Kimura (Andre Akpan 91+), Jonny Steele, Tim Cahill, Dax McCarty, Lloyd Sam (Eric Alexander 71), Fabin Espindola (Peguy Luyindula 78), Thierry Henry ©
Substitutes Not Used: Ryan Meara, Ruben Bover, Brandon Barklage, Ibrahim Sekagya
STATS: Shots 13, Shots on Target 5, Corner Kicks 2, Saves 5, Fouls 17, Offsides 5, Passes 358 (83.0%), Possession 49.6%
NE – A.J. Soares (caution) 19
RBNY – Fabian Espindola (caution) 20
RBNY – Jamison Olave (caution) 59
RBNY – Markus Holgersson (caution) 65
NE – Andy Dorman (ejection) 86
NE – Diego Fagundez (caution) 96+
Referee: Fotis Bazakos
Assistant Referees: George Gansner (AR1), Jonathan Johnson (AR2)
Fourth Official: Robert Sibiga