Red Bulls midfielder Cristian Casseres Jr, left, celebrates with teammates,...

Red Bulls midfielder Cristian Casseres Jr, left, celebrates with teammates, including defender John Tolkin (47) and forward Fabio (9), after scoring a goal against Orlando City during the first half of an MLS soccer match, Saturday, July 3, 2021, in Orlando, Fla.  Credit: AP/John Raoux

Credit this one to the new guys.

A trio of first-year Red Bulls played pivotal roles in the club’s 2-1 road victory over second-place Orlando City SC on Saturday at Exploria Stadium in Orlando. Striker Fábio scored the game-winning goal in the 79th minute on a pass by Patryk Klimala, the second assist of the match for the Polish forward, while goalkeeper Carlos Coronel made a key penalty save among his five stops.

The Red Bulls improved to 5-1-5 (16 points) with their first road victory of the season, sweeping the season series with Orlando City by frustrating the home side all over the pitch to create chances in transition and keep Orlando's attack at bay.

"It's a big win, we knew it would be big before the game," Klimala said. "They don't like our style of playing and I think we did our job, we did everything for the culture expected from us and it's good, we won the game."

Cristián Casseres Jr. wasted little time in his return from international duty with Venezuela at Copa América, putting the Red Bulls up in the sixth minute. Klimala fed Casseres on the right near the top of the box, and Casseres took just two touches before curling one off his left foot past the far post.

Orlando had a chance to tie after a foul called on Tom Edwards in the box gave Mauricio Pereyra an opportunity from the spot. Coronel had other ideas, going full stretch to his left and making the diving stop to preserve the lead.

The home side eventually leveled on a 59th minute goal by Chris Mueller, capitalizing on a strip by Daryl Dike of Sean Nealis. But RBNY was able to steal back all three points in the 79th minute, when Dru Yearwood made a long run into the middle, finding Klimala for up a feed to Fábio, who corralled the ball and coolly finished.

The Red Bulls’ backline, with an average age of 21.75, mostly came up large against an attack featuring veteran Nani and promising U.S. national teamer Dike. LI’s Nealis made his 11th consecutive start to begin the season at centerback, paring with Edwards. Kyle Duncan had his way up and down the right side and 18-year-old John Tolkin didn’t show his age at fullback.

While the newcomers had starring roles, head coach Gerhard Struber was pleased with the total effort across the roster.

"This is the reason we bring players in our team, they can take a big responsibility in the end that can win games," Struber said. "But I think the whole team did a brilliant job and for me that's the most important thing, when the team is in a good way."

More soccer news

ONE-DAYSALE5¢ a week for 5 6 months

Get Unlimited Access

Cancel anytime