Alex Muyl celebrates his first-half goal. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)
By Michael Lewis
HARRISON, N.J. — With four players on international duty, including three starters, the Red Bulls produced a workmanlike 3-0 win over Minnesota United at Red Bull Arena Saturday night.
Bradley Wright-Phillips scored twice and Alex Muyl once to boost the Red Bulls to 2-1 this MLS season while the second-year-old Minnesota side fell to 2-2.
The Red Bulls were missing starting defenders Kemar Lawrence (Jamaica) and Michael Amir Murillo (Panama) and midfielder Tyler Adams (U.S.), plus defender Fidel Escobar (Panama).
Head coach Jesse Marsch deployed rookie Kyle Duncan and Connor Lade at the right and left fullback slots, respectively.
Goalkeeper Luis Robles, who made several key saves, registered his second shutout, both at home, in three matches.
After a slow start, the Red Bulls struck twice to grab a two-goal halftime advantage before a slim crowd of 14,768.
First, Muhl faked out a defender on the right side, entered the penalty area before firing a 16-yard shot past goalkeeper Matthew Lampson in the 15th minute.
The Red Bulls’ second goal was a thing of beauty. Sean Davis started the scoring sequence off a 45-yard free kick that center back Tim Parker headed toward the net. Lampson had his hands and was ready to catch the ball, but BWP redirected the ball with his right foot for his second goal this season and a 2-0 lead in the 42nd minute.
Wright-Phillips made it a brace in the 78th minute. Muyl feed him a long pass on the right flank. Minnesota defender Wyatt Omsberg misplayed the ball and the English striker had a perfect angle to beat Lampson from 16 yards to the far left post and a 3-0 lead.
BWP has three MLS goals this season.
NY – Alex Muyl 1 (Kyle Duncan) 15′
NY – Bradley Wright-Phillips 2 (Tim Parker, Sean Davis) 42′
NY – Bradley Wright-Phillips 3 (Alex Muyl) 78′
NY – Marc Rzatkowski (caution, not retreating) 38′
MIN – Collen Warner (caution, unsporting behavior) 39′
MIN – Ibson (caution, unsporting behavior) 75′
Red Bulls: Luis Robles ©; Connor Lade, Tim Parker, Aaron Long, Kyle Duncan, Marc Rzatkowski, Sean Davis, Daniel Royer (Stefano Bonomo, 89′), Alex Muyl, Florian Valot (Carlos Rivas, 84′), Bradley Wright-Phillips (Derrick Etienne, Jr., 80′)
TOTAL SHOTS: 21; SHOTS ON GOAL: 9; FOULS: 12; OFFSIDE: 0; CORNER KICKS: 6; SAVES: 4
Minnesota United FC: Matthew Lampson; Brent Kallman ©, Carter Manley, Marc Burch, Wyatt Omsberg, Collen Warner, Ethan Finlay, Ibson, Miguel Ibarra (Franck Pangop, 72′), Sam Nicholson (Mason Toye, 71′), Christian Ramirez (Abu Danladi, 63′)
TOTAL SHOTS: 10; SHOTS ON GOAL: 4; FOULS: 14; OFFSIDE: 4; CORNER KICKS: 5; SAVES: 6
Referee: Hilario Grajeda
Assistant Referees: Craig Lowry, Jonathan Johnson
4th Official: Jose Carlos Rivero
VAR: Jorge Gonzalez