Major League Soccer

Gerhard Struber pleased with RBNY 'identity' despite failure to beat Atlanta United

Chris Smith
Red Bulls were unable to convert dominance into victory against Atlanta
Red Bulls were unable to convert dominance into victory against Atlanta / Ira L. Black - Corbis/GettyImages

New York Red Bulls head coach Gerhard Struber was left impressed by his team's performance against Atlanta United on Wednesday, despite their failure to turn dominance into three points.

The New Jersey side were in complete control of their key playoff race clash against the Five Stripes, overwhelming the visitors with a ferocious press and delivering a whopping 36 crosses.

But Atlanta stood firm and fended off all Red Bull advances, returning home to Georgia with a share of the spoils. Despite seeing his team faili to capitalize on their dominance, head coach Struber still had plenty of positives to reflect on.

“I have a big compliment for my boys and my coaching team," said Struber, who was forced to watch on from the stands due to a one-game suspension. "We dominate all phases of the game, we show so much discipline in our match plan.”

Struber admits he'd like to see a more clinical streak from his team, but remains happy with the 'identity' he's created.

“We have to be critical with ourselves about our inability to score chances - this is the main point we have to improve," he added. "But our identity, our special style of play helps us so much, it kills any hope and this is what we must do on Sunday.”

The Red Bulls are one place and one point above the Playoff line heading into Sunday's tricky Decision Day clash at Nashville SC, who are unbeaten at home this season.

But midfielder Dru Yearwood is confident his side can pull off a result that will seal their place in the MLS Cup Playoffs for the 12th year in a row - if the Red Bulls can refine their finishing.

“I think if we play the same way we did today, I have all the confidence we’ll get the result (against Nashville)” he said. “From minute one it was pure domination, but there are no excuses for not getting the goal we needed.”

Though Nashville are formidable at home, the Red Bulls can at least take confidence from their 2-0 win over Gary Smith's team earlier this season.