Q it Up Sports
1:01 AM EDT, April 4, 2010
Macoumba Kandji left-footed a shot past Seattle
goalkeeper Kasey Keller in the 21st minute, and the New York Red
Bulls snapped their 27-match MLS regular-season road winless streak
with a 1-0 win over the Sounders on Saturday night.
Kandji slipped his left foot around a Seattle defender as the ball pinballed around the penalty box off a corner kick. The shot deflected off the underside of the crossbar and past a helpless Keller.
New York goalkeeper Bouna Coundoul made the goal stand up with five saves, none bigger than pushing aside Steve Zakuani's chance from about 15 yards out in the 69th minute.
The Red Bulls had not won a regular season road match since winning at the Los Angeles Galaxy on May 10, 2008.
New York also won without coach Hans Backe on the bench Saturday night. The team said Backe had stomach pains Saturday morning and went to a hospital for treatment. Medical personnel recommended Backe remain at the team hotel rather than be at the stadium.
He missed the Red Bulls' first road win away from New Jersey in almost two calendar years. And with Columbus and Kansas City idle this weekend, the Red Bulls find themselves in first place in the Eastern Conference, already 40 percent of the way to their win total of a year ago when they finished 5-19-6.
During their winless stretch, the Red Bulls managed seven ties, but still lost 20 matches. They had three competitive road victories during the stretch, but none in MLS regular season play: a U.S. Open Cup win at San Jose (2-1 last April 29) and two league playoff wins (3-0 at Houston on Nov. 9, 2008, and 1-0 at Salt Lake on Nov. 15, 2008).
While Kandji got his first goal of the season, Coundoul was largely responsible for this victory, again highlighting Seattle's biggest issue from its first season: finishing chances.
Zakuani's opportunity was the best for Seattle, but Freddie Ljungberg and Tyrone Marshall both missed possible headers in the second half. Coundoul smothered scoring chances from Brad Evans and Osvaldo Alonso in the first half.
Seattle, which won its opener 2-0 over expansion Philadelphia, had its four-match regular season win streak dating to last season snapped. Keller made three saves for Seattle, including a point-blank stop of New York striker Juan Pablo Angel early in the second half to keep the Sounders within one goal.
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