Red Bulls stumble for first time in 2010

New York lose in tight encounter versus Chivas

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Over the course of
a long and often grueling MLS season, there are bound to be days when
things don’t click. Consider the Red Bulls’ 2-0 loss to Chivas USA on
Saturday the first time this season the Red Bulls know the feeling.

“We
just didn’t put it together," said midfielder Sinisa Ubiparipovic after
the match. "Our passing wasn’t good enough to break them down."

Watch: Full match highlights

Almost
immediately after kickoff of the second half, the Red Bulls found
themselves on their heels and trailing. A 46th-minute strike by Jesús
Padilla from just outside the box deflected off rookie defender Tim
Ream, catching Red Bulls goalkeeper Bouna Coundoul flat-footed. The
shot struck the post and bounced to Coundoul, who lunged at the ball
and pushed it across the line and into the back of the net. It was the
first goal New York conceded and the first time the team trailed all
season.

The Red Bulls pressured and pushed for an equalizer
throughout much of the second half, but their attack sputtered. Despite
the second-half insertion of Salou Ibrahim – the freshly inked forward
from Belgium – into the match, New York rarely looked dangerous.
Striker Juan Pablo Ángel struggled for a second straight game but came
close twice in the 63rd and 66th minutes, with both of his headers
failing to land on frame. For much of the game, New York struggled to
muster anything offensively.

New York’s best chance of the half
and the match came in the 73rd minute when Mac Kandji settled a ball on
the left side of Chivas USA’s box and sent a cross to Ibrahim, who was
open from eight yards out. Unmarked, the second-half sub awkwardly
settled and floated a shot across the goal and wide.

Chivas USA
iced the game during extra time off the foot of Padilla, who outraced
Jeremy Hall for a through ball from midfield and beat a diving Coundoul
for his second goal of the game, capping off a solid performance by the
hosts.

“He said he didn’t think we played our best,”
Ubiparipovic said of coach Hans Backe. “But we’ll be back, this is our
first loss this year, including preseason. We will do better.”