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New York Red Bulls at Kansas City Wizards: Match Night Commentary


The red-hot Kansas City Wizards are home tonight for a New York Red Bulls squad coming off its first win — and first two goals not as a result of an own goal — of the year.

After losing its first two games of the year, the Wizards have reeled off three consecutive victories and currently sit in fourth place in the Eastern Conference, two points behind leaders Chicago. After scoring a brace in the final 12 minutes to forge a 2-2 draw with the Fire, Josh Wolff is the reigning MLS Player of the Week, while the Red Bulls will be led by the scoring tandem of Juan Pablo Angel and Mac Kandji, who combined for both goals in a 2-0 win against Real Salt Lake Saturday night.

It is Jimmy Conrad bobblehead night at CommunityAmerica Ballpark (insert your joke here). I will be providing commentary of the match throughout the night and, as always, we at SBI encourage reader feedback, as well.

Sit back and enjoy.

FINAL — The game is over and Lopez's penalty kick early in the first half holds up for the Wizards, who are now unbeaten in four straight games. While KC gets the three points, the Wizards didn't do themselves any favors with a predictable vanilla attack. The Red Bulls, meanwhile, showed great effort, but were done in by the second red card of Carlos Johnson's young MLS career.

The Red Bulls will return home Sunday to host Eastern Conference rival D.C. United, while the Wizards head to Toronto to take on TFC on Sunday.

Thanks everyone for checking in and making this another successful live commentary. Hope you enjoyed it, even if the game might have left a lot to be desired for you.

90+1 MINUTE — We're in first of two minutes of stoppage time and Hartman comes up with the game-saving stop, robbing Angel, who got a piece of Mbuta's flick in the box.

90TH MINUTE — Sassano with a deep throw, but couldn't find a teammate. Espinoza, on the other end, blows a chance to kill the game, missing the net badly on a spinning attempt.

89TH MINUTE — Desperation time for the Red Bulls. By the way, apparently some of you do not quite get my sarcasm. I'm aware Johnson will be suspended Sunday against D.C. The Open Cup game is Wednesday against San Jose, btw.

86TH MINUTE — Angel lays off a long ball from Stammler. Ubiparipovic steps up to hit the shot, but it is deflected away.

83RD MINUTE — Angel is visible frustrated with Mbuta, who failed on a give-and-go. Red Bulls with a free kick from distance. Angel and Pacheco are over the ball. Angel takes it and fires well over the net from 30 yards out.

81ST MINUTE — Pacheco with solid defending on Kraus and wins a free kick. Mbuta and Richards shank chances on the other end for the Red Bulls. If this scoreline holds up, you've got to think neither team will be happy with the result. Sure, the Wizards will extend an unbeaten streak to four games, but they weren't dangerous enough with the extra man. And the Red Bulls surely will rue the early red card and the inability to take the game when it was up for grabs.

79TH MINUTE — Espinoza tries to connect with Harrington on an overlapping run, but the ball eludes Harrington and KC again loses possession.

76TH MINUTE — Kansas City is just looking to hold possession and kill the game in the final quarter hour. Gomez comes off for Kraus, while Ubiparipovic is on for Mendes.

74TH MINUTE — Richards with a hopeful run down the flank, but the ball deflects off of him and out. On the other end, Wolff takes a touch and fires a shot into Conway from the edge of the 18.

67TH MINUTE — This game is there for the Red Bulls to at least get an equalizer. Espinoza is on for Besler. Conway makes a big save on a Hohlein attempt.

64TH MINUTE — Richards is fouled at the edge of the box. Pacheco takes the free kick and curls it just over the bar.

59TH MINUTE — Dane Richards comes on to bring some pace off the bench, replacing Kandji for the Red Bulls' second change of the game.

55TH MINUTE — Some miscommunication between Conway and Mendes as the defender plays the ball away with Conway calling for it. Dellacamera suggests perhaps Mendes couldn't hear Conway. Really? I think fans in New Brunswick heard him.

52ND MINUTE — Borman does a good job putting pressure on the ball and he is fouled by the left touchline. Pacheco to take. Angel off a deflection rips a shot into Hartman, who punches the Red Bulls' first shot on goal away.

49TH MINUTE — Mbuta takes a long cross off his chest and does a good job to force a corner. Borman takes it far post, but it deflects out and KC is off on a counter. Harrington pings a ball to the far post, but Wolff isn't able to corral the ball and it goes out for a goal kick.

46TH MINUTE — Second half just started and the Red Bulls make one change — Luke Sassano is on for Rojas.

HALFTIME — So I'm reading some of the comments now that it's halftime and I'm intrigued by the comment made by "Someone who has played soccer." Guess what? You're right, I haven't played soccer. Point for you. But I think I know a thing or three about the sport. I know what a keeper is supposed to do on that play, but you clearly think what he did was good? Did he attempt to dive to one side? Make it difficult for the PK taker? He just fell over like he was drunk. And I do know a thing or two about that, too. 

HALFTIME –  The early penalty kick holds up and the Wizards head into the locker room with a 1-0 lead.

45+1 MINUTE — Gomez with a shot from about 22 yards out, but it's punched away by Conway.

44TH MINUTE — First half is winding down. KC still leads, but the Red Bulls have done well to keep themselves in the game.

36TH MINUTE — After being a bit shellshocked in the early moments after Johnson's red card, the Red Bulls have done a good job of late with possession and getting into the attacking third.

34TH MINUTE — Pacheco takes a free kick from distance and hits a low, hard shot, but it well wide to Hartman's left.

32ND MINUTE — Harrington now comes up for Jewsbury for the game's first substitution. Curt Onolfo gave Jewsbury a chance to clear the cobwebs, but saw something he clearly didn't like and made the move.

29TH MINUTE — Rojas slips a great ball through to Kandji on a counter, but Kandji missed the net badly. Conrad gets booked for a harsh tackle on Rojas at the top of the box.

26TH MINUTE — Pacheco with a deep throw, attempted to give Mbuta his first taste of the ball, but he missed the flick header and Angel fouls in the box.

23RD MINUTE — Gomez shot deflects out for a corner, third for the Wizards. Lopez goes far post where Gomez attempts a diving header, but Conway dives to his left to push the ball away.

22ND MINUTE — Wizards again called for offside. Every venture into the attacking third looks like a dangerous one for KC. Congratulations Carlos Johnson, you've been awarded the earliest red card in Red Bulls history.

20TH MINUTE — Jewsbury is up, but appears groggy. Michael Harrington may come on. Lopez takes the free kick from the right edge of the 18-yard box, but puts it right into Conway's chest.

17TH MINUTE — Mendes with a hard foul on Jewsbury, who remains on the grass. This will be a dangerous scoring chance for the Wizards once Jewsbury is carried off. Mendes lunged forward in an attempt to play the ball, but missed and collided with Jewsbury.

15TH MINUTE — Another wasted corner for KC. Wizards, of course, have the better of possession. Wolff gets off a cross and Conway leaps up to grab it with no target man in sight.

12TH MINUTE — Lopez with a great service from the left, forcing Conway to dive off his line to get a paw on the cross but Wolff is offside on the play.

10TH MINUTE — Rojas dances on the ball at the top of the box, but held on to the ball way too long. Wizards get out on a quick counter, but Conway grabs Gomez's attempted cross to Wolff.

EIGHTH MINUTE — I might be going out on a limb here, but I think Jeremy Hall will find his way back in the starting lineup for the Red Bulls against D.C. on Sunday. First corner goes to KC, but Conway grabs Lopez's attempt. And back to the penalty kick, I might be nitpicking here, but Conway needs to do a little better than just falling to one side.

FIFTH MINUTE — Johnson took a poor touch on the ball and it fell right to Gomez. He desperately tried to lunge back and knock the ball away, but clearly got the man and he is sent off for a second time this season. Pacheco has pushed over to the right and Borman has dropped back to fill the void on the left.

THIRD MINUTE — GOAL KANSAS CITY. Claudio Lopez had no problem pushing the ball past goalkeeper Jon Conway, slotting the ball to his right as Conway guessed left. 1-0 KC.

SECOND MINUTE — Penalty kick for the Wizards and a straight red card issued by referee Michael Kennedy as Herculez Gomez is tripped by Carlos Johnson in the box. That's two red cards for the Costa Rican international and changes the entire course of the game.

PREGAME — We've got lineups for you.

Kansas City Wizards






Bench: Pardo, Kraus, Thompson, Morsink, Espinoza, McKenzie, Harrington

New York Red Bulls






BENCH- Cepero, Wolyniec, Sassano, Ubiparipovic, Boyens, Smith, Richards

  • Braden

    You got to love the fact that Angel looks pissed as hell that he lost the match despite playing most of the game with 10 men. It might be a rough season for the Red Bulls, but if they play with the spirit they showed today it will be worth watching.


  • Jacob A.

    Shoulda been a draw if you ask me, now off to wait on the U-17 game to get posted.


  • Trex

    Well, NY played pretty good, especially the D, they are really coming together. Strong performance considering we were down a man all game. Yes it was a red, but the rest of the game, that ref SUCKED! Unreal.

    Clearly we were the better side tonight, a bit unlucky with the early card and not to get a break at the end there. But there should be no question that we will be on top of KC by the end of the season.

    That was extremely frustrating, but overall the team is making very good strides.


  • jamin barnes

    Midfield play was pretty bad overall. I hope both teams improve in that area, so the game could be more enjoyable to watch.


  • JoeW

    Ives–my bad! Don’t know why I thought the DCU-RBNY match was an Open game–obviously it’s not. So my previous post is off-base. Of course Johnson would be suspended for that match.


  • gmen04

    Bulls have definitely made positive strides. Goldie is playing well and Pacheco has settled in nicely, now if the right backs could stop getting reds it would be nice.

    Agree with Trex, Kennedy was underwhelming in his calls as usual. Ref development far behind player development here, hope no one is offended by that


  • Trex

    Yes, Kansas City gave LACKLUSTER PRODUCT. Not NY, most teams would not get that many chances and possession with 10 men.

    That’s why the midfield play looked bad, it was because when you lose a man things get so stretched out. Sassano and Ubi is pretty good I thought after Rojas came out.

    What I would give to see us play a full 90 with the lineup we WANT out there. Not this patchwork, shuffling around stuff. But that’s how it goes.

    So what are the odds Hall gets a red on Sunday?


  • Smith

    30 years ago, we got the Cosmos on tape delay with horrible camera angles.

    I’ll take what ESPN is giving us.


  • someone who has played soccer

    So, here’s a follow up to my comment since now that I read your commentary, Ives, you seem to have picked up on it.

    Conway didn’t fall down as though he were drunk. On a penalty kick the keeper will generally choose one direction and go to that side no matter what, unless the penalty taker badly telegraphs his shot. Once the keeper decides to go to one side and starts moving that way, the momentum will obviously carry him through.

    So, what happened with Conway was not so much that he merely fell down lazily; rather, he decided to dive in the wrong direction. He might have realized the kick would be going to his opposite just as it was being taken, already too late for him to change direction. So, what looked like falling down was a simple case of Conway choosing the wrong side and realizing his error early enough to stop the full out dive but too late to change direction.


  • EssEff

    Eugene, I’m with you. I love the debate, but I’m 40 and got into MLS from the start. I played since I was 5, not a bad player, but definitely don’t know how to analyze a game. Anyway, I totally love the sport. I was there in the days when Sanneh was an up and comer making a great (!) impression on the road in CR in WC qualifying. Anyway, that’s just to tell you where I’m coming from. I’ve been a Direct Kick sub for years, but just dropped this year.

    I want MLS to survive, but tire of it. Of course, when somethings on the line, like Interliga, the passion is ratcheted up 100% and then I love to see our guys go up a level and compete. But, MLS now bores me. Can’t blame the players, there’s not much on the line in the early weeks. The game tonight after NY went down a man, was so slo mo. Bummer. I want to see our league be exciting, but the slow process is excrutiating


  • Supsam

    Really people? really!?! Why do you guys watch MLS in the first place? Why!? Do you expect ronaldo like stepovers, zidane’s roulette, pretty flicks and chips when watching MLS? NO!! So dont go mouthing off how messy it is. Im not saying its not but im not going out of my way telling everyone. Do you tell a girl that they have a hella noticable pimple? No! Cuz im sure they already know and they dont want to hear it. I dont want to hear it and im sure most of us here dont either. I watch MLS because i support US soccer, I support my local community (San Jose), I support the game of soccer. Its a young league and ill be patient.

    To all those all of a sudden MLS bashers, go watch your Bundesliga, your EPL, your Serie A league. Oh wait thats right, its not “yours” its “theirs” You dont need MLS well MLS does not need you. I will be waiting for you guys to come back here on SBI when your English Beckham comes back yea? You guys know im right.


  • Rudy

    O.k., now I’m convinced.If you suck at something, don’t waste time trying. They should just disband MLS now. Why bother?


  • KCB


    And let me just say, the WORST PLAYED 1-nil victory I’ve EVER witnessed from my Wizards. Were we really a man up that entire match? I think NY must have slipped another player on the field cause I didn’t notice.


  • MVK

    Wizards always play like crap a man up, once they started stop trying to pass it around so much in the midfield NYRB didnt get any real chances. I don’t know how Espinoza missed that shot in the end, it was the easiest part of the play and he skuffed it. Oh well, a point is a point. I give RB player of the match two that right winger that has the African name Mbuta or something like that and the man of the match to Dane Richards, but for the Wizards because he made it like playing two men up…


  • MVK

    poor finishing by each team, probably should have been 3-1, Mac Kandji should have finished his chance in the first half and Gomez should have finsihed his diving header in the first half as well. Angel got close in the 2nd but Hartman was quick to come out and Espinoza completely botched a wide open goal after beating his mark on a cross/switched ball.


  • MVK

    Was the “D.A.R.E. To Keep a Goalkeeper Off Drugs” sign visiable on the boardcast?


  • Joamiq

    someone who has played soccer apparently doesn’t know a whole lot about goalkeeping.


  • madmax

    Will Carlos Johnson lead the league in red cards? Harsh call, Johnson is horrible but he wasn’t last defender.

    Imports were the difference, John Pablo is in very poor form, while Lopez is in fine form.

    When will MLS players get that first touch down. The majority of MLS players have a ‘yard touch’, to both bring the ball down and on the dribble. It makes playing the ball on the ground extremely difficult. What’s up coaches?

    Both back fours resorted to banging the ball
    up field in the second half. I couldn’t tell why on TV? Weren’t the mids making themselves available, or was it just lazy play?


  • Joamiq

    MVK, all we saw was the DARE part. Pretty funny even as a Red Bull fan now that I know what the whole thing said, but at the time I thought, “DARE banners at MLS games? Man, KC is lame.”


  • MVK

    Joamiq- i was just wondering if it was shown, i am not a fan of that kinda stuff and i wasnt to pleased about the fan who threw the beer on the field after a bad call as well.

    madmax- http://soccernet.espn.go.com/report?id=262063&cc=5901

    that link has the video replay, Gomez was had an easy goal reguardless if you think the guy was the last defender so its nothign but a red. By the book he prevented an obvious goalscoring opportunity and given this

    “Referees should consider the following circumstances when deciding

    whether to send off a player for denying a goal or an obvious goalscoring


    – the distance between the offence and the goal

    – the likelihood of keeping or gaining control of the ball

    – the direction of the play

    – the location and number of defenders

    – the offence which denies an opponent an obvious goal-scoring”

    its a no brainer call


  • chupacabra

    If you’ve paid attention for a while to the way Gomez plays, you’d know that the phrase “obvious goal scoring opportunity” does not apply to him.


  • Homey Boehme

    Total neutral here, but managed to catch the 2nd half of the game. There really wasn’t a whole lot to get excited about. Not many goal scoring opportunities, very sloppy passing/loss of possession in the midfield.

    One other thing I will say, is that it is very hard to enjoy watching a game when the commentators feel the need to say how awful the game you are watching is. On the other hand they were echoing my exact thoughts, but idk….(trails off into non-conclusive thought pattern)


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