Jack Harrison scored his second professional goal and set up David Villa for his league-leading 12th goal of the season to help lift New York City FC to a 2-0 win over the Red Bulls in the fifth installment of the New York Derby Sunday afternoon at Yankee Stadium.
The victory, NYCFC’s third in a row, gave the Club sole possession of first place in the Eastern Conference, one point in front of the Philadelphia Union. It was also the first time New York City defeated Red Bulls in the growing New York-area rivalry.
Harrison put NYCFC (7-5-6) in front in the eighth minute when he latched onto an Andrea Pirlo, evaded Mike Grella with his second touch and then put a low shot off Luis Robles and in from 14 yards for his second goal of the season.
Villa doubled NYCFC’s lead in the 66th minute with his first goal in five derby matches. Off a quick counter, Frank Lampard sprung Harrison, who raced down the right side. Harrison played a sublime ball across the box to a sprinting Villa, who tapped in from seven yards out.
It was Villa’s league-leading 12th goal of the season.
The Red Bulls (7-9-2) finished the match with 10 men after Chris Duvall received a straight red card for a dangerous tackle on Pirlo in the 79th minute.
Villa had two quality chances to extend NYCFC’s lead before the interval, but Robles did well to dive to his right in the 37th minute and then the captain’s attempt from 20 yards deflected out for a corner one minute before halftime.
Villa nearly had a brace three minutes from full time when he danced around Dax McCarty and into space, but his curling effort was just over the crossbar.
Patrick Vieira post-game thoughts:
Jesse Marsch post-game thoughts: