The New York Red Bulls advanced to the CONCACAF Champions League Quarterfinals with a 2-0 win against CD Olimpia, 3-1 on aggregate.
Here are five things we learned from the victory.
Bradley Wright-Phillips Picked Up Where He Left Off
Entering his sixth season with the Red Bulls, Bradley Wright-Phillips showed no signs of slowing down.
New York’s forward buried career goal No. 101 in the 54th minute to pad their advantage and lead them to victory.
“It’s pretty remarkable that he continues to, in a way, live above his hype,” Luis Robles said. “For him in a big moment, in a big situation, to give us that goal not only took a lot of pressure off our back, but allowed us to come into the game and really believe that we could see ourselves through this.”
Sean Davis & Homegrowns Step Up in Elimination Match
Homegrown Players Sean Davis, Alex Muyl and Tyler Adams started and made a major impact in the Red Bulls’ win against Olimpia.
Adams assisted Davis’ goal in the 64th minute to seal the match, while Muyl posted a team-high four shots in his 65-minute shift.
“Sean Davis was getting in a lot of good spots today,” Adams said. “He can create and score those kinds of goals, we’ve seen it day in and day out in practice.”
During the match, New York displayed their tactical flexibility by changing formations mid-match.
Head Coach Jesse Marsch says he knows his team is “comfortable” with formational changes, adding it’s a “good sophistication” to have heading into the season.
“At 1-0, we made the shift to put five in the back,” Marsch said. “We got the goal actually almost right away when we changed the formation…at the end of the game, we switched to a 5-4-1 late.
“We know that this group is more comfortable now with playing different formations and that’s a good sophistication to have within the group that we can manage moments within individual matches.”
Kaku’s First Test
Alejandro “Kaku” Romero Gamarra made his Red Bull Arena debut as a substitute in the 65th minute.
In his first stint which lasted 25 minutes, New York’s Young Designated Player took two shots, including one shot on goal and another pushed just wide of the far post.
Red Bulls Will Take on Tijuana in Quarterfinals
With the 3-1 aggregate win over CD Olimpia, New York is set to face Club Tijuana from Mexico in the CONCACAF Champions League Quarterfinals.
Club Tijuana defeated Honduras’ FC Motagua 2-1 on aggregate to reach the Quarterfinal stage.
The first leg will take place in Mexico on Tuesday, March 6, followed by the home leg at Red Bull Arena on Tuesday, March 13.