A superb performance from goalkeeper Luis Robles allowed an early conversion by the New York Red Bulls to stand up in a 1-0 win over host Toronto FC at BMO Field on Sunday.
Four minutes into the game, Red Bulls defender Kemar Lawrence capitalized on a mistake from Toronto goalkeeper Alex Bono. A New York corner attempt bounced to Lawrence outside the box, and his 20-yard shot rolled along the ground and past Bono, whose view of the ball may have been blocked by other players.
The early strike continued the Red Bulls’ penchant for strong starts, as New York (10-4-2) now has nine goals in the first 15 minutes of games this season. By contrast, Toronto’s eight goals allowed in the opening 15 minutes is the worst of any team in the league.
Toronto FC’s attempts to equalize were continually denied by Robles, as the keeper made eight saves to keep the clean sheet.
Robles was particularly sharp in the midst of an aggressive Toronto attack at the start of the second half, stopping both Michael Bradley and Marco Delgado on close-range chances from inside the box.
Robles stood tallest in the 78th minute, stopping a penalty kick from Sebastian Giovinco. The Toronto FC striker has converted just one of four penalty attempts this season.
Toronto (4-9-3) was awarded the kick after a referee’s video review charged Red Bulls defender Tim Parker with a handball in the box.
Robles now has five shutouts in 13 games played this season. The keeper hasn’t allowed a goal in his last 183 minutes of league play.”
The Red Bulls took 15 shots but only two were on target. Toronto took 13 shots.
Victor Vazquez was out of Toronto’s lineup due to a knee injury, after missing some training sessions during the week due to the problem. Vazquez’s playmaking was missed by Toronto FC on Sunday, and a prolonged absence would be another blow to a roster that has been hampered by injuries all season, and is still without Jozy Altidore and Drew Moor.
—Field Level Media