The Red Bulls had a game plan to try and gain an advantage on the road in the Semi-Finals of the CONCACAF Champions League. But sadly they concede a goal, but surprisingly they came out well after the opening ninety minutes as they lose their first match in Champions League play.
The lone goal came in the 26th minute when Tyler Adams tried to create a pass and put the ball back towards the area of Guadalajara, but sadly made a mental error. He tracked back as Chivas had a two on one attack, but he got spun around and then Issac Brizuela converted past Luis Robles for the only goal of the match.
Kemar Lawrence tried to help out Adams, but sadly he couldn’t do much as he looked helpless tracking back on the defensive end of the situation. But after that goal, Chivas got no other goals as the Red Bulls looked strong defensively and held on to a one goal deficit.
The only chance to level the match and tried to earn an away goal was in the 79th minute when Bradley Wright-Phillips got a great ball and tried to get his shot off, but you could tell he took to much time with the ball and Rodolfo Cota came out and smothered the ball for the big save of the night.
But while they were playing strong defensively, you have to say that they had a lot of difficult moments trying to string some passes together and Guadalajara did a great job stopping their attacks, but at the same time there were a lot of unforced errors.
Both Alex Muyl and Aurelien Collin got a yellow card in this match and both are suspended for the second leg, but Collin got a second yellow in the 73rd minute which automatically went red so if the Red Bulls do find a way to defeat Chivas in the second leg, he maybe suspended for the 1st leg in the final.
But speaking about cards and calls, referee John Pitti Hernandez missed two major calls that should’ve gone the Red Bulls way. In the 60th minute he either saw and ignored it or totally missed a hand ball by the Chivas defender in the area.
An easy call where the defender had his left arm stretched out, away from his body and handled the ball. An easy penalty call that should’ve been in favor for the Red Bulls. Then an altercation that involved Rodolfo Pizarro as he tried to get Tyler Adams in trouble in the 83rd minute.
But while he was thrown to the ground by Adams, the referee already saw the earlier grabbing of Adams right arm and booked him for the initial foul and took Tyler off the hook, but Sean Davis wasn’t so lucky.
Jair Pereira grabbed Davis by the throat during that altercation and got away scot free. No bookings or a sending off which would’ve put Guadalajara down to ten men, yet Hernandez wasn’t interested in that situation.
While Chivas was a solid side and looked good, you knew when the nasty challenges and the gamesmanship was beginning, they were trying desperately to get players who were on yellow card warnings to be booked and missing the second leg. Thankfully outside of Muyl and Collin no one else fell for that type of play.
“I think we got what we thought we would, which is combative. Pressing, counter pressing and making it difficult on us when we had the ball. We choose to play direct often, try to bypass their pressure.” said Jesse Marsch.
“We could’ve been a bit opportunistic and a little bit sharper making some plays in the final third, but facing a good Chivas team in a tough place to play I think only being down by one goal is a good result for us and we will go back to Red Bull Arena and push the game there.”
So the Red Bulls are going to have to mix it up with the starting eleven when they get back to Red Bull Arena and possible throw in Kaku and possibly Rzatkowski into the attack, but they will be down a central defender in Aurelien Collin.
It is only halftime here, but it’s time to show the goats what a little home cooking can do as they try and get the advantage at home.