The New York Red Bulls defeated Orlando City 3-0 at Exploria Stadium to become the third-ever Major League Soccer team to win their first four away matches of the season, and the first since 1998.
Goals from Luquinhas, Lewis Morgan and Cristan Casseres Jr. earned the New York Red Bulls the three points and second place on the Eastern Conference table.
Luquinhas found the back of the net in the 26th minute after a strong run from the Red Bulls on the right. Defender Sean Nealis kicked off the sequence, connecting with Lewis Morgan and Omir Fernandez before the Brazilian took possession just outside the box to complete the right footed shot into the lower left corner.
The Red Bulls then doubled the score seconds into the second half as Frankie Amaya found Cristian Casseres Jr. in the final third after a fast break. Goalkeeper Pedro Gallese blocked the venezuelan midfielder’s initial shot, but Casseres found the rebound and buried it into the center of the goal.
Orlando attempted to retaliate, but players could not find their footing on the attack.
Just when both sides thought the game was over, defender Rodrigo Schlegel conceded a penalty with a handball inside the box. Lewis Morgan stepped up to the spot and buried the left footed shot into the center of the goal. Goalkeeper Pedro Gallese made the dive to the left, miscalculating Morgan’s direction.
Second on the Eastern Conference table, the NY Red Bulls now boasts 14 points in eight games and a record of 4-2-2, trumping Orlando City, who sits in third.
Orlando City player ratings
1. Orlando City (4-2-3-1)
GK: Pedro Gallese - 6/10 - Cannot be blamed for the first goal, but sloppy coverage in the second goal.
RB: Ruan Gregório Teixeira - 6/10 - Two clearances but otherwise disappeared.
CB: Rodrigo Schlegel - 7/10 - Big shoes to fill as Antonio Carlos' replacement, but found his way as the game progressed. Managed the best chance of the second half with a header that narrowly missed the goal before conceding a penalty with a hand ball inside the box.
CB: Robin Jansson - 7.5/10 - The strongest figure in the backline, attentive to provide the necessary all-around coverage.
LB: João Moutinho - 7/10 - Did the job.
RW: Alexandre Pato - 6.5/10 - Disappointing, has the ability to be an influential figure but felt slow and inconsistent against the Red Bulls. Fell back and blended in.
CM: Júnior Urso - 7/10 - Took on a defensive role early on when Orlando City needed players to push forward and equalize. Lacked urgency.
CAM: Mauricio Pereyra - 6.5/10 - Zero shots throughout the game. Opted for a defensive role after the Red Bulls took the lead, but could have pushed forward instead of admitting the defeat.
CM: César Araújo - 6.5/10 - Tried to initiate opportunities from the midfield, but could not connect with teammates to create something inside the Red Bulls' box. But very loose defending that led to the first goal.
LW: Facundo Torres - 7/10 - Moments of intensity while weaving through the midfield but must be better when reaching the final third.
F: Ercan Kara - 6/10 - Lacked intensity and did not create nearly enough to be the lone striker. One shot off target in over 80 minutes of play.
SUB: Benji Michel (for Pato, '45)- 6/10 - Just as disappointing as Pato, did not create.
SUB: Thomas Williams (for Urso, '45) - 6/10 - Minimal involvement.
SUB: Sebas Méndez (for Araujo, '82) - N/A
SUB: Silvester van der Water (for Torres, '82) - N/A
SUB: Jack Lynn (for Schlegel, '89) - N/A
New York Red Bulls player ratings
2. New York Red Bulls (4-2-3-1)
GK: Carlos Coronel - 8/10 - Excellent save to Kara's strike in the second half before knowing it was offside, otherwise covered well.
RB: Tom Edwards - 8/10 - Did the job well.
CB: Sean Nealis - 8/10 - Well rounded player, strong defender while creating opportunities from the back.
CB: Aaron Long - 8/10 - A solid figure at the back, four important clearances and two necessary interceptions.
LB: John Tolkin - 7.5/10 - Eager. Must be sharper on the ball when pushing forward but constantly involved.
RW: Omir Guadalupe Fernandez Mosso - 7.5/10 - A great figure in the midfield, can drop to defense and inspire when pushing forward. Assisted the first goal.
CM: Frankie Amaya - 8/10 - Solid figure in the midfield, constantly pushing forward to create opportunities. Assisted the second goal.
CAM: Luquinhas - 9/10 - Scored the first goal, and otherwise involved in the most offensive opportunities.
CM: Cristian Casseres - 9/10 - Goal in the second half. Constantly pushed forward and tested Orlando City's midfield and backline.
LW: Lewis Morgan - 8.5/10 - Great when on the ball, but otherwise easily blended in. But scored the penalty to make it 3-0.
F: Ashley Fletcher - 7/10 - Managed two shots on target in the first half but energy dwindled as the game progressed, does not work as a lone striker.
SUB: Dru Yearwood (for Luquinhas, '45) - 7/10 - Involved in the game from a defensive perspective.
SUB: Patryk Klimala (for Fletcher, '59) - 7.5/10 - Involved from the moment he came off the bench, easily adjusted. Scored before it was ruled offside.
SUB: Dylan Nealis (for Morgan, '89) - N/A