New York Red Bulls 2, Toronto FC 0 | 2018 MLS Match Recap
Alejandro Romero "Kaku" Gamarra guided the ball over the goal line in the 70th minute and the New York Red Bulls boosted their Supporters' Shield hopes with a 2-0 victory over a Toronto FC club that desperately needed three points in their last-gasp pursuit of a playoff spot.
Bradley Wright-Phillips helped set up both goals, but picked up a late yellow card that marred the result slightly for the hosts. He will now be suspended for next Sunday's home match against Atlanta United, which began the weekend four points in front of New York in the teams' chase for the Shield.
- THE BIG PICTURE: One of the final nails was driven into Toronto's playoff coffin, and the Reds will surely feel frustrated that again injuries played a role. Sebastian Giovinco did not travel after a leg injury picked up in Wednesday's Campeones Cup loss to Liga MX giants Tigres UANL. And then Jozy Altidore departed three minutes after halftime; he appeared to pick up an injury to his right foot or ankle before the break.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Only two men know exactly what was said, but a late exchange between Wright-Phillips and assistant referee Brian Poeschel was enough to earn the Red Bulls' marksman a costly caution. How much did it matter? Wright-Phillips continued to protest his case to referee Kevin Stott and his crew after the final whistle.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Aside from his caution, this was one of those matches where Wright-Phillips proved to be the game's most crucial offensive player even though his performance didn't include one of his 19 goals. It was his aerial challenge on TFC 'keeper Alex Bono that cleared the way for Kaku's opener, and his gorgeous ball over the top that freed Etienne for his insurance tally.