HARRISON, N.J. (August 2, 2014) – The New York Red Bulls U-23s are the 2014 National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) Champions after defeating Chattanooga FC, 3-1, at Red Bull Arena on Saturday night. The victory capped off a fantastic season in which the Baby Bulls finished undefeated with a 16-0-0 record.
"It was a magical night," said New York Red Bulls U-23s head coach Simon Nee, "It was such a wonderful experience for the boys. It really wraps up a great season. We had a great group, a lot of quality and a lot of returning guys. It was thoroughly earned; the boys worked really hard."
Chattanooga’s Luke Winter opened up the scoring in the 15th minute with a volleyed rebound after Luis Trude’s curling effort rattled the upper right crossbar. It was just the second time all year that the U-23s have trailed an opponent. The Red Bulls equalizer came in the 23rd minute when left back Scott Thomsen was fed into the box by Dan Bedoya before finishing low under Chattanooga keeper Greg Hartley. The U-23s were lively throughout the entire half and finished with 11 shots.
“At the beginning of the game I saw them pass with such confidence. What a wonderful experience, really, just to do it here in front of the home fans. Hopefully they come away thinking that we’ve got quality guys in there and one day they may break through to the first-team, which is what it’s all about.”
The second half was a more even affair that grew steadily tenser. Red Bulls central defender Joe Farrell found himself unmarked in the box but his header sailed just wide in the 72nd minute. Less than 60 seconds later, the team’s leading scorer this season, Victor Manosalves, nearly put his team ahead from the top of the box but his curled effort narrowly missed the post. Substitute Sammy Adjei also was unmarked for a diving header that was sent over the bar from six yards out just three minutes later. In the 81st minute, Chattanooga had their best chance of the second half when Thibault Charmey’s bullet free-kick from 35 yards out was sent directly at Red Bulls keeper Mike Lansing.
The Red Bulls made their breakthrough in the 84th minute when Sean Davis headed a cleared ball back into the box following a corner kick directly to Farrell who spun around and lashed a half-volleyed shot into the near corner. Adjei added an insurance goal in the 90th minute when he was played in on goal and slotted in the rebound after his first shot was saved by Hartley.
“It’s unbelieveable. It was a nervy second half. I thought we created a lot of good chances. Credit to Joe [Farrell]. Sammy [Adjei] at the end, [he’s] so dangerous when he gets on the last player. I thought everybody did fantastic.”
“I was just doing my job,” added Farrell after the match, “It was amazing. Thanks to all the Red Bulls fans. Thanks to all the family and friends and everyone we have here. It meant so much.”
New York Red Bulls U-23s 3, Chattanooga FC 1
August 2, 2014
NPSL National Championship
Red Bull Arena – Harrison, NJ
- CHAT: Luke Winter (Luis Trude) 15’
- NY: Scott Thomsen (Dan Bedoya) 23’
- NY: Joe Farrell (Sean Davis) 84’
- NY: Sammy Adjei (unassisted) 90’
- CHAT: Jordan Dunstan (caution) 32’
- NY: Mike Innocenzi (caution) 37’
New York Red Bulls U23s: Mike Lansing; Oniel Fisher, Joe Farrell, Antonio Matarazzo, Scott Thomsen; Sean Sheridan ©, Franklin Castellanos, Sean Davis (Mael Corboz 85’), Victor Manosalves; Mike Innocenzi (Sammy Adjei 63’), Dan Bedoya (Chris Thorshiem 72’)
Substitutes not used: Julien Petrello, Rhys Williams, Chris Lema, Clifford Lyle
Chattanooga FC: Greg Hartley; Wil Linder, Chris Lavie, Jordan Dunstan, James Moore; Thibault Charmey, John Carrier (Jose Ferraz 24’), Nial McCabe, Luis Trude; Luke Winter (Michael Brooks 59’), Stas Reyneke (Chrispin O’Chieng 38’)
Substitutes not used: Tom Halsa II, Adam Reakes, Mohammed Aden, John Davidson
Referee: Mark Gonak
Referee’s Assistants: David Bork and Michael Piercey
4th Official: Ryan Dos Reis