The New York Red Bulls did what no MLS team has ever done and swept an opponent in the Concacaf Champions League knockout round.
They followed up on their 2-0 win at Tijuana to beat
Xolos, 3-1, in the second leg on Tuesday night at Red Bull Arena and advance to the semifinals for the first time with a 5-1 aggregate victory, the largest margin an MLS team has ever won by in
the knockout round.
CCL Schedule: SEMIFINALS New York Red Bulls vs. Seattle
Sounders/Guadalajara winner Toronto FC vs. Club America/Tauro winner Dates:April 3-5, April 10-12. FINAL Dates:April 17-19, April 24-26.
Bradley Wright-Phillips, who had both goals in Tijuana,
was the hero in the unusual role of provider, assisting on all three goals scored by Tyler Adams and offseason signings Marc Rzatkowski and Alejandro Romero Gamarra, both
Luis Mendoza had scored for Xolos in the 10th minute to cut the Red Bulls' lead in half and put them behind for the first time in five games in 2018.
Red Bulls coach Jesse Marsch praised the 19-year-old Adams for his fearlessness and composure in settling the game down after Tijuana went ahead.
“It was good
to see guys not crumble," Marsch said. "They stuck together. A couple of guys you could see were grabbing the team by the neck a little bit and saying ‘All right, come on, let’s keep
Adams said beating Tijuana was a coup for the Red Bulls, who had never won a knockout series in the Concacaf Champions League before this year.
“We know we have something special brewing in the locker room," he said, "but we also know we have a lot to improve on.”
March 13 in Harrison,
N.J. NY Red Bulls 3 Tijuana 1. Goals: Adams 28, Rzatkowski 70, Romero Gamarra 76; Mendoza 10. NY Red Bulls -- Robles; Murillo, Collin, Parker, Long,
Lawrence; Royer, Adams, Valot (Romero Gamarra 63), Muyl (Rzatkowski 46); Wright-Phillips (Rivas 79). Tijuana -- Lajud; Mendoza, Aguilar, Perez, Valenzuela (Munoz 43), Rivero (Lucero 61),
Mendoza, Rubin (Malcorra 64), Bolanos, Musto, Garcia. Att.: 6,393