Red Bulls Inch Up East Table With Win Over Philadelphia

Red Bulls, New York Red Bulls
Tom Barlow celebrates his goal against the Philadelphia Union. Photo: Brad Penner-USA Today Sports

The New York Red Bulls moved a step closer to possibly hosting an opening-round playoff game with a 2-0 home win over the Philadelphia Union Sunday night.

With two matches remaining in the regular season, the Red Bulls (14-13-5, 47 points) sit in fifth place one point behind D.C. United. The top four teams in each conference are guaranteed to host at least one playoff game. New York and D.C. United will meet on Sunday at Red Bull Arena. Kickoff is set for 5 p.m.

New York tallied back-to-back league clean sheets for the first time since May 25-June 1 against FC Cincinnati, 1-0 and Real Salt Lake, 4-0. On Wednesday, New York defeated the Portland Timbers 2-0 at Providence Park.

The Red Bulls opened the scoring in the 32nd minute when Josh Sims sent a pass across the Philadelphia goal. Union keeper Andre Blake missed on his attempt to break up the pass with a diving stop and Tom Barlow got on the end of the pass and finished just inside the near post.

In the 60 minutes that followed the goal, quality scoring chances were few and far between. Six minutes into stoppage time, New York sealed the victory when Daniel Royer scored an insurance goal off of a feed from Bradley Wright-Phillips. The tally was Royer’s 11th of the season.

Luis Robles recorded two saves for his eighth league clean sheet of the season and 71st career league shutout overall.