Five Points | Point Gained 


New York City Football Club recorded a point against Red Bulls on Saturday.

The two teams played out a goalless draw at Yankee Stadium. 

Here are Five Points from the game...

Point Gained 

There was understandably a tone of frustration when the final whistle echoed around Yankee Stadium on Saturday afternoon, and it was a testament to the fact NYCFC felt a game was there to be won.

NYCFC pushed hard for the goal and dictated the game running until the last whistle in the baking heat that covered the Bronx. While the goal of Saturday was always to win, it was just as important that the Boys in Blue did not lose. As well as being rivals, the Red Bulls are also in the running for a playoff spot, and sit just below NYCFC in the table. 

Saturday's result maintained that gap, and that was the minimum the team aimed to deliver. 

Big Save

Matt Freese has a simple job – keep the ball out of the net.

There are games in which he is asked to do that more often than not, and in those high-pressure moments, when chances are few and far between, a goalkeeper can earn the admiration of fans and teammates alike with a big save. 

Freese did just that in the Hudson River Derby. His first major intervention came just minutes in when Elias Manoel wriggled free to find some space in the penalty area – the shot-stopper standing tall to deny him at his near post. 

Then in the second half, Omir Fernandez was handed a bouncing ball from close range. His point-blank effort was expertly tipped up and over by Freese. Big moments call for big players, and the shot-stopper was undeniably that.

Fast Start 

Nick Cushing said in the build-up to the game that the team which was able to impose their style on the game would gain an upper hand.

Both teams opened the contest with speed and intensity and that made it difficult for the game to establish a rhythm or flow, and at times forced NYCFC to be more direct in their attacking approach.

It was important that NYCFC settled the contest after that so they could begin to establish their style and in flashes they did that.

A derby fixture thrives on its unpredictability, and with Cushing’s pre-game prediction, it was no surprise that NYCFC grew into the game and finished the stronger of the two sides.

Keep On Running 

Mounsef Bakrar may not have ended the day with a goal, but his industry and hard work were on show throughout his entire performance.

Bakrar has a striker’s mindset and it shows in the positions he takes up. His willingness to make constant runs beyond the defensive line – regardless of whether he benefits – is a major asset to NYCFC as it allows to create space on the field in different ways.

His tireless performance kept Red Bulls on their toes and meant they could not push their defensive line as high as they might have liked.


NYCFC were unable to gain the victory they desired they did add to their unbeaten streak in MLS – stretching it to three games in a row.

The nature of the run-in makes it difficult to know which results will be most impactful, but the point taken today could play a significant bearing on the final standings come the end of the regular season.

They will now take that into the game against Orlando City and hope to improve upon it with a three-point return.

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