The day couldn't have started any better for NYC FC as it hosted the cross-river rival Red Bulls at Yankee Stadium. But an early goal and an electric sellout crowd of 48,047 weren't enough for the home side Sunday as the Red Bulls won, 3-1.
"We did a nice job at the start of the game," NYC FC coach Jason Kreis said. "We came out for the first 25, 30 minutes and played really good. And after that it was real poor."
Though there was a sea of rowdy, red-clad supporters packed into 10 sections on the first-base side of the upper deck, the rest of the capacity crowd cheered on the home team.
That crowd erupted as Thomas McNamara put NYC FC ahead in the sixth minute after corralling a cross from Mix Diskerud that was headed down by Andrew Jacobson.
NYC FC controlled possession for most of the first half, but the tide began to turn as the clock ticked toward halftime.
Red Bulls defender Chris Duvall, who scored in the second half, pushed down the right side and had a great chance in the 28th minute. Three minutes later, Felipe Martins sent a shot just over the crossbar and Bradley Wright-Phillips, who tied an MLS record with 27 goals last season, missed on a point-blank chance in added time.
NYC FC almost took a 2-0 lead earlier in the half but David Villa's shot was stopped by keeper Luis Robles.
"If that goes in, then the game opens completely up for us," defender Shay Facey said. "They would have had to come chase the game and gaps would start opening for us."
NYC FC couldn't contain Wright-Phillips for the entire game as the dynamic forward knocked in a left-footed volley off a cross from Sacha Kljestan in the 47th minute. Duvall scored his goal five minutes later and the Red Bulls added the dagger when Matt Miazga put in a cross that came from a Kljestan free kick.
"After we scored our goal, they controlled more of the game," Diskerud said. "We became more defensive-minded, but we had some opportunities and let them in the game, but they deserved to win."
NYC FC (4-8-5) had its winning streak snapped at three games. "It was an effort that was really disappointing," Kreis said. "From my point of view, I feel like it was the first time we didn't get a real honest effort out of all of our players."