HARRISON, N.J. — A 10-man New York Red Bulls team dug deep in the second half to rescue a point against the Vancouver Whitecaps in a gritty and ugly 1-1 tie at Red Bull Arena on Saturday night.
A powerful and well-placed goal by Davide Chiumiento gave Vancouver the lead in the first half, but second-half sub Juan Agudelo responded for New York — who had right back Jan Gunnar Solli ejected at the end of the first half — midway through the second stanza to seal the draw.
Neither midfield seemed effective at creating any sort of rhythm or flow, with both teams seemingly content to play over the top and settle for long balls. Vancouver, who entered the game tied for the second lowest goals scored record in the league, looked the more dangerous of the two sides in the first half, while New York surged in the second, threatening to flip the score line despite being a man down.
After a sloppy start in the game’s early moments, the Red Bulls nearly got on the board in the eighth minute. From the midfield circle, Dax McCarty played a clever diagonal ball over the top of the Vancouver defense to Dane Richards. The Jamaican international took a heavy first touch but settled and fired a shot directly at Joe Cannon, who made the save but dropped the ball.
The rebound fell to Thierry Henry, who tried a cheeky backheel that hit the side netting.
The Whitecaps took a much deserved lead in the 23rd minute. Cutting into the left side of the Red Bulls penalty area, Camilo maintained his balance despite a challenge from a Red Bulls defender and passed back towards the center of the area. Chiumiento chipped the ball up with his left foot, spun, and then hammered it with his right foot into the corner of the goal for his second tally of the season.
The goal came during a first half where the Whitecaps were clearly the aggressor.
While the visitors held just a 1-0 lead going into halftime, the lead looked a little more certain when, in the 44th minute, New York lost Solli to a straight red card. Attempting to get on the end of a through ball from Eric Hassli, Camilo was dragged down about 35 yards from goal by Solli as he looked set to break free and in alone on the goalkeeper. Referee Terry Vaughn wasted no time in giving the Red Bulls right back an automatic red.
Despite the man advantage, Vancouver never looked likely to put their stamp on the game in the second half as New York pressed for an equalizer, which came in the 68th minute. Controlling the ball down the flank, Rafa Márquez lofted a cross into the penalty area and towards a hard-charging Agudelo, and the US international swooped for a right-footed shot past a helpless Cannon.
For Agudelo, it was his sixth goal in his first full season in MLS.
New York nearly took the lead in the 80th minute when Agudelo again threatened the 'Caps goal. The teenager rose to head a ball towards the target, but Cannon made a sprawling save and then somehow managed to block Richards’ follow-up shot to preserve the point for his team.
With the tie, the Red Bulls (6-6-15) added a point in their bid to make the playoffs, bringing their points total to 33 points. Vancouver (4-13-10) stayed in last place in the Western Conference.
New York next travel to face FC Dallas on Sept. 17, looking for three points to help solidify their hold on a playoff spot. The Whitecaps travel to take on the league-leading LA Galaxy in search of their first road win in franchise history since joining MLS.
VAN -- Davide Chiumiento 2 (Camilo 3) 23
NY -- Juan Agudelo 6 (Rafael Marquez 3) 68
NY -- Rafael Marquez (caution; Reckless Tackle) 31
NY -- Jan Gunnar Solli (ejection; Denied Goal Scoring Opportunity (Foul)) 46+
NY -- Thierry Henry (caution; Dissent) 73
Vancouver Whitecaps -- Joe Cannon, John Thorrington (Jonathan Leathers 78), Jay DeMerit, Alain Rochat, Jordan Harvey (Long Tan 89), Shea Salinas, Camilo, Gershon Koffie, Peter Vagenas, Eric Hassli, Davide Chiumiento (Mustapha Jarju 57).
Substitutes Not Used: Michael Boxall, Jeb Brovsky, Omar Salgado, Jay Nolly.
New York Red Bulls -- Bouna Coundoul, Jan Gunnar Solli, Carlos Mendes, Tim Ream, Chris Albright, Stephane Auvray (Juan Agudelo 61), Dax McCarty (Luke Rodgers 81), Rafael Marquez, Joel Lindpere, Dane Richards, Thierry Henry.
Substitutes Not Used: Mehdi Ballouchy, Matt Kassel, Stephen Keel, Alex Horwath.
Referee: Terry Vaughn
Referee's Assistants: George Gansner; Eric Boria
4th Official: Alex Prus
Time of Game: 1:53
Weather: Cloudy and 76 degrees