for this game

Red Bulls blank Toronto FC

Aug 18, 2008 - 12:48 AM By Simon Lewis PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

EAST RUTHERFORD, New Jersey (Ticker) -- The New York Red Bulls survived the second half with a man down to record a second straight league victory by defeating Toronto FC, 2-0, on Sunday at Giants Stadium.

A first-half opening goal from Mike Magee gave the home side a deserved lead but the Red Bulls then saw defender Gabriel Cichero sent off a minute into the second half for serious foul play.

Cichero's clash with Danny Dichio ended the newly introduced Toronto substitute's participation in the game, and the Red Bulls rubbed salt into Canadian wounds with an injury-time goal from New York captain Juan Pablo Angel.

The win sends New York into a tie for fourth place in Major League Soccer's Eastern Conference standings with a 7-6-7 record. Toronto slipped to 7-9-4.

"It was a fantastic result," Red Bulls coach Juan Carlos Osorio said. "I think if you analyze the 90 minutes we truly deserved the three points.

"It was a great effort, some outstanding individual performances and it was great to have a clean sheet and a second consecutive win."

Osorio was delighted with his team's effort after Cichero's dismissal and the contribution of Angel as a lone striker.

"We changed things, with Juan Pietravallo in front of the back four, three midfielders and one up front and I think (Angel) was a handful to all of them," Osorio said. "It was a great effort, like they say, all hands to the pump and I'm very pleased with the team effort and hopefully we will continue like that."

Magee's lead goal had been well deserved, with the home side having made all the running in the opening stages and Angel twice was denied by Toronto goalkeeper Greg Sutton around the 20-minute mark.

The Red Bulls lost defender Jeff Parke to ankle injury in the 22nd minute and, before head coach Juan Carlos Osorio could send on a replacement, Lauren Robert's free kick from deep had found Nana Attakora-Gyan on the right, but his shot was saved at the foot of the post by Jon Conway.

Then Magee struck. The Red Bulls' sweeping counter-attack began inside their own half with Seth Stammler sending a long ball down the middle of the field and Magee breaking from inside his own half, holding off a defender and shooting across Sutton for the only goal of the first half.

There was still time for a couple of yellow cards - the first one going to Toronto captain Jim Brennan, the second to van den Bergh - and the bad temper carried over into the second half.

Dichio, having just come on as a halftime replacement for Abdus Ibrahim, saw his involvement ended a minute after the restart when he and Cichero went up for a high ball and the Venezuelan defender launched his elbow into the Englishman's head.

The foul brought an instant red card from the pocket of referee Terry Vaughn and, with Toronto head coach John Carver having also introduced Johann Smith for Robert at halftime, he was forced to use his third and final sub just four minutes into the second half, replacing a concussed Dichio with Jarrod Smith.

Osorio said he thought a yellow card would have been sufficient punishment, although he added he would like to see a review of the play, but Carver was left to feel he had been dealt a double blow.

"I changed it at half-time because I'm trying to be positive," Carver said. "Then it shoots us in the foot.

"I put Danny Dichio on and he lasts a few minutes and then has to come off with a concussion after some serious foul play. That left me with one substitute," Carver said. "I wanted to get (defender) Marvell Wynne into the action with his serious pace down the right-hand side but I couldn't do that because I needed to stick another striker on, so I put Jarrod Smith on.

"You think it works as an advantage for you but because I tried to be positive with two changes at halftime, it's backfired on me."

Despite the numeric advantage, Toronto rarely threatened the Red Bulls goal, with only Ricketts finding the target and all three efforts saved by Conway.

Their lack of penetration was punished in the dying seconds when Angel struck for his seventh goal of the season, a simple tap-in having been set up by Jorge Rojas and sub Dane Richards.