NEW YORK — Both New York City FC and the New York Red Bulls came into the latest Hudson River Derby needing a win against their biggest rival to give their ever-fleeting playoff hopes a shot in the arm, but it turned out that all both teams did was get in each other’s way on the path to salvation.
The rivals played out an uninspired, scoreless draw inside Yankee Stadium on Saturday afternoon, as both remain just a hair out of the ninth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. While the Cityzens picked up their fourth point in their last two games to move within two points of ninth-place D.C. United with five games left, the Red Bulls saw their winless streak move to four games (0-1-3) as it moves to three behind ninth-place with six games remaining.
In a game devoid of gilt-edged scoring chances from either side, the best opportunity to score came in the 74th minute, when Bronx-born Omir Fernandez, whose had a knack of scoring against NYCFC, latched onto a Kyle Duncan cross in the middle of the box and one-timed a shot toward goal. NYCFC goalkeeper Matt Freese stopped his momentum after going to his right to track the cross, then leaned left to make a left-hand parry of Fernandez’s shot for his best save of the contest.
*Editor’s note: Above the byline is the photo gallery from Saturday afternoon’s contest, with photos taken by ALOST photo editor Robert Cole. After clicking on the first photo to enlarge the picture, make sure to press the left and right arrow buttons to scroll through the rest of the pictures. There are 15 pictures in total.