Photo courtesy New York Red Bulls II
HARRISON, N.J. – The New York Red Bulls II romped to a 5-2 victory against the Charleston Battery on Saturday afternoon at Red Bull Arena as four different players found the net for the hosts. New York almost took the lead in the seventh minute on a curling effort by Stephen Echevarria was palmed onto the crossbar by Battery goalkeeper Odisnel Cooper, but the Red Bulls II went ahead a minute before the break from the penalty spot as Brian White shot low into the left corner after Ben Mines had been brought down in the penalty area. New York took a firm grip on the game in the opening five minutes of the second half as the hosts struck twice to take a three-goal lead. The first came in the 47th minute when White cut back a low ball for a late-arriving Andrew Tinari that the midfield fired home off the underside of the crossbar, and then Mines converted with a low shot from a set piece three minutes later. The Battery hit back in the 56th minute when Tah Anunga put home the rebound from Ataulla Guerra’s initial shot, but six minutes later New York notched a fourth when Amando Moreno took advantage of a defensive mix-up to tap home. Anunga put home his second of the game for the Battery with 12 minutes to go as a long ball by Taylor Mueller put the midfielder in behind New York’s defense, but it was too late for a serious comeback as New York earned a decisive victory.
44’ – NY – Brian White (penalty)
47’ – NY – Andrew Tinari (Brian White)
50’ – NY – Ben Mines (Andrew Tinari)
56’ – CHS – Tah Anunga
62’ – NY – Amando Moreno (Brian White)
66’ – NY – Amando Moreno (Ethan Kutler)
78’ – CHS – Tah Anunga (Taylor Mueller)
Three Things That Matter:
1. The Red Bulls II made an emphatic attacking statement to pick up their second win of the season and maintain their now long-held upper hand on the Battery as four different players found the back of the net in a display that showed the side has lost little of its attacking edge despite the team’s offseason moves to Major League Soccer. The interplay in the middle and attacking thirds of the field consistently caught the Battery flat and ended up producing a tidal wave of goals early in the second half.
2. Red Bulls II midfielder Andrew Tinari grew into his role for the club over his rookie season a year ago but now has come into his own as one of the keys to New York’s midfield play. Tinari’s goal on Saturday saw him notch his third goal of the regular season in as many games – more than he notched in 26 appearances in 2017 – but on top of that the drive the former Columbia University with his accurate passing and willingness to challenge opponents is going to make him one to pay close attention to moving forward.
3. The Battery were once again unable to lift the hex the Red Bulls II have held over them since the inception of the all-time series between the clubs and will have plenty to thing about defensively as they continue a four-game road trip next weekend against Bethlehem Steel FC. Charleston put in two solid defensive displays to start the season, continuing what has been a staple for the success the side has had over the past seven seasons, but fell apart regularly on Saturday with a series of misjudgments that cost the side dearly.
USLSoccer.com Man of the Match
Brian White, New York Red Bulls II – White notched the opening goal and then added two second-half assists to lead the Red Bulls II’s attacking onslaught to victory.
New York Red Bulls II at Richmond Kickers – April 7, 5 p.m. ET, City Stadium
Charleston Battery at Bethlehem Steel FC – April 8, 3 p.m. ET, Goodman Stadium