The New York Red Bulls earned a 2-0 road win in the first leg of the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals against Club Tijuana.
Here’s what we learned from leg one:
Luis Robles is a G.O.A.T.
A career-high 13 saves for Luis Robles highlighted the Red Bulls’ victory, keeping a clean sheet in a hostile environment.
“Luis made save after save after save,” head coach Jesse Marsch said. “The poise that he set the tone for our team to not panic. Luis was fantastic.”
Bradley Wright-Phillips continued his scoring ways, tallying both away goals in New York’s opening leg win.
BWP has now scored a goal in back-to-back Champions League matches, and tallied a point in his last four matches, dating back to last season.
“They wanted to start fast, so [Bradley Wright-Phillips] getting the goal right off the bat helped neutralize their threat, it put them on their back foot, which helped us a lot,” Robles said.
New York Made MLS History
The Red Bulls’ 2-0 win over Tijuana was just the third time in CONCACAF Champions League history that an MLS team has won a game in Mexico, breaking a 21-match winless streak.
MLS teams are 3-38-8 when playing competitive matches in Mexico.
It is the first time an MLS team has won in a knockout situation, and the first time an MLS team has won by multiple goals.
The other MLS wins in Mexico were both 1-0 wins in the group stage of the competition.
Tim Parker is Ready
New York’s latest acquisition Tim Parker started and played the full 90 minutes in his Red Bulls debut, helping the Red Bulls to a clean sheet on the road.
He was also a target on set pieces, taking two shots in the match.
“When we came down here, we knew it was going to take a big effort,” Marsch said. “We had to hang on. We needed our defenders to empty the tank and give everything they had…it’s a wonderful result for us.”
New York in Driver’s Seat Heading into Leg Two
With the victory and an advantage with away goals, the Red Bulls have put themselves in position to advance to the CONCACAF Champions League semifinals with another strong performance at Red Bull Arena.
New York has never advanced beyond the quarterfinal stage in Champions League.
The Red Bulls can advance with a win or draw. A loss of 0-1, 1-2, 2-3, 3-4 and so on would also see them through.
“It’s only halftime,” Marsch said. “This is far from over. We know that going back to Red Bull Arena we’re going to have a very tough match again.”
New York Red Bulls vs. Club Tijuana Leg Two will take place at Red Bull Arena on Tuesday, March 13 at 8 p.m. ET. Tickets are available now.